Harmony Gold Mining Company, South Africa's third largest gold producer and fifth in the world, has awarded the GSB a contract to engage in the design and formulation of a customised leadership development programme for the organisation.
The Harmony Business Leaders Development Programme (BLDP) is an internal transformation initiative that aims to enhance the capacity of senior management to deal with turbulence in the mining sector, both on a macro and micro level. It is anticipated that through the transference of appropriate skills, knowledge and expertise within the Harmony operational context, sustained operational improvements can be realised.
"Our primary development objective is to provide management with a suite of generic 'leadership' tools that, when applied within their scope of accountability, will assist them to perform optimally and attain operational effectiveness," said Jeevan Uren, Harmony Gold project manager for HR services.
The GSB beat off strong competition, including bids from other business schools, to win the contract to develop the programme. As part of the arrangement, the School will conduct a learning needs analysis for the company, followed by the design phase of the programme. Harmony will retain ownership of the programme and in-house experts will be closely involved in the development process. Uren said that this is seen as a critical determinant of the overall success of the programme.
Mebs Loghdey, director of Tailored Programmes at the GSB, said that the School would bring its distinctive learning methodologies to bear on the programme.
"The focus will be on nurturing self-awareness and building analytical and systems thinking skills that enable individuals to operate effectively in complex environments," he said.
"The GSB's systems thinking and action learning methodologies which focus on process and context as opposed to content, set it apart from other institutions that tendered," said Uren. He added that the School's approach to learning, which integrates theoretical concepts into realistic constructs bridged by 'moments' of critical reflection, enables growth of the whole person.
"The programme will develop mine managers and others in the company into South African business leaders," said Loghdey. "We hope that our first foray into the mining industry with Harmony will be a beneficial learning experience for both of us.