ISSN: 1391 - 0531
Sunday May 4, 2008
Vol. 42 - No 49
Financial Times  

Strategy development workshop by the European Chamber

The European Chamber of Commerce of Sri Lanka (ECCSL) this week conducted a workshop for Sri Lankan managers on developing corporate strategies. The workshop titled “Towards purpose and direction: Let’s strategise today for tomorrow” was conducted by experts from the Dutch based training and consultancy organisation, MDF South Asia.

The workshop targeted Chairman, CEO’s, COO’s, CFO’s, Directors, General Managers, and senior level managers from industries, multinationals and small medium entrepreneurs, that are involved in organisational growth and development. In addition the workshop was open to line managers, human resource development and training managers and other quality professionals, that are part of developing strategic plans of an organisation.

The ECCSL said that the workshop was considered timely for Sri Lankan companies because of the rapid pace of change in today’s corporate environment. “The exponential growth in technology and the information superhighway has only decreased the relevance of time and distance, resulting in the importance of combining planning with strategy,” said a statement from the ECCSL.

“This ever changing environment has today necessitated heads of any organisation; multi nationals or small medium based, to develop a scheme for positive and proactive acclimatisation through forward thinking and anticipating and precipitating change. Viewed by many as an overwhelming and time consuming task, a comprehensive and high quality strategic plan would provide a company purpose and direction and would serve to balance initiatives of revenue and productivity,” said the ECCSL.

The workshop used a "hands-on," activity-based approach through case illustrations and experiential exercises. Through this process participants were exposed to the latest tools and techniques in developing strategic plans and were provided with the tools to evaluate and improve their current strategic plans within their own organisations.

The workshop was conducted by two experienced consultants, whose experience in management consultancy spans over 10 years. The lead consultant, Mike Zuijderduijn has 14 years experience working for a wide range of organisations, primarily in Africa and Asia. He specialises in the area of institutional development and organisation strengthening. His clientele include organisations such as World Bank, the European Union, the Asian Development Bank and the UNDP.

The assisting expert, Roshanga Wickremesinhe, is an innovative and energetic trainer and a skilled communicator. With a strong background in the private sector, Wickremesinhe changed his work area to the development sector and has a practical view that is sensitised to the specifics of non-profit operations. During his time with MDF South Asia he has developed expertise in (participatory) project monitoring and evaluation and institutional and organisational strengthening. In all these fields he has delivered training courses in Sri Lanka and the region, and has acted as consultant process facilitator. (DS)


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