When the Burke Learning Agility Inventory®(Burke LAI®) was introduced almost two years ago, Dave Smith, President and CEO of EASI•Consult®, Warner Burke, professor and researcher at Teachers College Columbia University, and I all assumed that the U.S. would be the market for the test.
Longer-term, we hoped there might be enough interest – and eventually, sufficient demand – to translate the test into Spanish and Mandarin Chinese.
The last two years have brought a couple of surprises:
- Global interest in the tools was present almost from the product’s introduction.
- While there have been inquiries about translating the test into Spanish and French Canadian, it has not been a requirement for those wanting to utilize the Burke LAI.
The first international request came from the United Kingdom in late 2015. The interesting part – this U.K. business has a Japanese parent company.
EASI•Consult then began to market the Burke products through informational showcase sessions, both online and in person. We also introduced an online certification session that attracted attendees from Canada and the U.K.
Next came a request from Australia. I happened to be vacationing there and conducted a showcase session. The input I received at that meeting led to us revising the certification making it a two-day, in-person process. From this initial interest, a group of people in Australia were certified earlier this year. And a couple of our U.S. customers with operations in Australia led to additional business there.
Another country where we have received a number of inquiries is India and we have had conversations with several Indian firms. In April, we identified the right partner, and she will start growing that business in September.
Our relationship with Hogan Assessments’ leadership led to them introducing us to one of their clients who was looking for a learning agility product. The company, French-headquartered Air Liquide, approached us about working with a group of its high-potential people throughout Asia. We are working with them in five different countries, and the 360° Burke LAS assessments were all conducted in English.
For our international partners and clients seeking certification, we’ve developed flexible solutions to make that happen. We recently prepared a consultant working with a non-profit who has since delivered Burke LAI results to 25 mid-level bankers throughout Southeast Asia. He has submitted proposals to work with other financial services in Asia as well. His two-part certification involved both virtual and in-person components.
There is a woman in Romania who owns a very successful consulting business. She will be coming to the U.S. for certification.
A couple of weeks ago, we held a virtual certification session for a global search firm that will be incorporating the Burke LAI into its work with a European grocery store client.
So, why has the interest for the Burke LAI been so strong, so quickly outside the United States? My belief is that the VUCA (Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous) world is felt more prevalently outside the U.S., or at least people outside the U.S. are looking for a potential competitive advantage.
Figuring things out in the face of uncertainty is what learning agility is all about. Whatever the reason, the immediate acceptance of the Burke around the globe has made very interesting work even more interesting.
Learning agility dimensions like Feedback Seeking have to be recast in Asia so they are in line with those cultures. For example, you don’t ask for feedback about your “own” performance; you ask how the project (that you happen to have led) went. Interpersonal Risk Taking, which is difficult for many people, takes on other considerations, depending on the culture in which it is occurring.
From time to time we will continue to update you on our global learning agility journey.
David Hoff is the chief operation officer and executive vice president for leadership development at EASI•Consult®. EASI•Consult works with Fortune 500 companies, government agencies, and mid-sized corporations to provide customized Talent Management solutions. EASI•Consult specialties include individual assessment, online employment testing, survey research, competency modeling, leadership development, executive coaching, 360-degree feedback, online structured interviews, and EEO hiring compliance. The company is a leader in the field of providing accurate information about people through professional assessment. To learn more about EASI•Consult, visitwww.easiconsult.com, email ContactUs@easiconsult.comor call 800.922.EASI.