「華人戴明學院」是戴明哲學的學習共同體 ,致力於淵博型智識系統的研究、推廣和運用。 The purpose of this blog is to advance the ideas and ideals of W. Edwards Deming.

2010年11月15日 星期一

IBM reinvents voluntary work

ibm 公司今年贏得哥倫比亞大學商學院戴明中心的Deming Cup
值得 多記一下這家公司的作為

IBM reinvents voluntary work
Corporate volunteering Big-hearted Blue

"IT WAS like going back to graduate-student days. We all had nicknames and were hanging out together," says Guruduth Banavar, a senior executive at IBM. He recently spent time volunteering in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, as part of a six-person team put together by the IBM Corporate Service Corps, working pro bono with the city government to help develop new strategies in areas ranging from public transport and water supply to food safety and innovation.

Launched in 2007 as a "corporate version of the Peace corps", the programme is now being scaled up to 500 IBMers a year. Although many companies encourage their employees to do voluntary work, and some (such as Pfizer, a drugs firm) send them overseas to work with local community organisations, the IBM Corps reinvents the idea in several important ways, not least in its scale and its overt goal of doing well by doing good.

The idea was a result of trying to implement the vision of Sam Palmisano, IBM's chief executive, to turn the company into a "globally integrated enterprise". Needing to develop leaders capable of operating anywhere in the world, the firm decided to use volunteering as a form of training for high-flyers. There are benefits, says Stanley Litow, who has overseen the corps from its conception: communities benefit from an influx of talented problem-solvers, the company's brand is polished and it gets a squadron of leaders with new skills. "And it's a lot cheaper than a traditional international assignment," says Mr Litow.

At first those selected for the deliberately multiethnic teams were rising stars a few rungs below the top, but the programme has now been extended to executives such as Mr Banavar, a former head of IBM's research in India who is now chief technology officer for the firm's global public-sector business. "It was the best way to train myself for the new job," he says. The executive teams give advice on how to become "smarter cities" to local governments—which could become buyers of IBM's services, though the firm insists it offers help with no strings attached.

Indeed, although it is easy to imagine the benefits to IBMers, the biggest challenge facing Mr Litow has been to ensure that the corps is actually benefiting those it claims to help, especially as the missions last only four weeks for regular staff and three weeks for the executives. That could easily be just the right amount of time to make things worse rather than better. So IBM works with non-governmental organisations such as CDS, which specialises in overseas volunteering, to identify projects and to prepare staff before they arrive.

Other firms are now following IBM's lead. Novartis, a drugs company, has sent volunteers to Tanzania and the Philippines. Dow Corning has sent them to Bangalore. FedEx is sending half a dozen people on IBM projects to see if the model works for them.

An unexpected benefit for IBM is that the corps has been hugely popular inside the firm: more than 10,000 IBMers have applied so far. Those who have taken part show a greater commitment to continuing their career with the company, says Mr Litow. There are even some satisfied customers. Piotr Uszok, the mayor of Katowice, Poland, says he is delighted with the smarter-city advice he received this year and hopes that IBM will take part in the (happily) competitive tendering for projects that are the fruit of this volunteering.

CSR創新力 IBM成立志工大隊全球服務




善用志工服務 培育領導人



起初,被IBM選中當志工的,都是較低階、被看好的明日之星,但後來進一步增加了讓巴納瓦爾等主管也能參加的高階團隊,專門為地方政府提供如何打造 智慧城市(smarter cities)的建議──這些政府將來也可能變成IBM的客戶,不過IBM堅稱,他們的服務沒有任何附帶條件。



IBM另個意外的收穫,是志工部隊在公司裡非常受歡迎:至今已有上萬人搶著要報名。里托指出,凡是參加過的員工,都更願意繼續投入自己的工作。另方面,接 受服務的地方政府,顯然也很滿意。例如,波蘭卡托維茲市長尤索克就很喜歡智慧城市的建議,他還希望IBM也能來參加這項計劃的競標呢。