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Developing Leaders for the Energy Industry

A large number of people at energy organizations are engineers by profession and acquire the management and leadership position with career progression. No doubt, technical competence should be an entry token for the technical leadership position. Despite the significance of the technical skills for the managerial and leadership role, the importance of management skills at these positions cannot be ignored. Moving forward in the career, proficiency in technical skills is not only sufficient but an engineer should also have a broader understanding of the context to manage and control the situations as a manager and leader. A manager and leader should well comprehend all the organizational functions including operations, finance, marketing, and human resource. Against such backdrop, organizations need to develop their engineering workforce as effective managers and leaders in the energy sector. The knowledge, skill, and ability of middle management people need to be strengthened to enable them for management functions. In fact, placing engineers to management and leadership positions without enabling them with sufficient management skills could be a risk.

Along these lines, it is suggested that the intervention should be planned strategically with the well-defined objective at the career intersection of an engineer (i.e., before moving to the middle management level). The intervention should aim to develop the executives thoroughly from developing fundamental competencies to big-picture subjects. For this, the intervention may integrate both on the job and off the job methods. At one side, off the job, the programme will help engineers to learn the management fundamentals and their appropriate use at the job whereas on the job methods help engineers to transfer their learning at the workplace. The intervention objective should be properly aligned with an organizational objective. Further, it is also notable that energy sector is quite different from other sectors in many domains. Following such realization, it is argued that a generic management training or development programme may not bring the desired result. Hence, it is emphasized that the programme should be customized and designed specifically for energy sector as per the demand of the industry and target participants. The programme curriculum should be unique and designed especially for training and development of the energy industry people. Accordingly, the content, material and cases should be from energy sector only. The curriculum of management programme needs to be developed in consultation with important stakeholders from the sector including academicians, practitioners and policy makers. Based on the objective, content, target participants; the programme duration could be from one week to a year. NTPC School of Business is looking to contribute the energy sector through knowledge creation and dissemination, accordingly NSB is involved in offering of various short term (MDPs and in company programmes) and long term (one year PGDM executive and two PGDM energy management programme) programmes to develop human capital in the energy sector.

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