Ericsson CLO Brad Samargya Discusses Networked Society Learning

Leah Williams

Global businesses face unique challenges connecting a geographically
and culturally diverse workforce, Ericsson Chief Learning Officer Brad
Samargya explains.
"Ericssson is in every country that has cell phones. That’s 110,000
employees scattered across 180 countries around the globe,’"Samargya
notes. "The challenge is then, how do you raise the competence levels
of all these people around the globe in a way that supports business
objectives and instills the Ericsson way in a cost-effective manner."
The solution, Samargya explains, is applying the "‘networked society"
concept -- the idea that everything that can be connected wll be
connected, to the corporation. "We see that, in the next five years, we’ll
have 50 billion connected people and devices. To achieve this will take
technology, people and processes," Samargya notes.
"At Ericsson," Samargya continues, "we’re in the process of trying to
become a learning organization, which entails sharing, being nimble,
having a culture of leaders as teachers and recognizing those who
contribute to corporate success. To be a nimble company of 110,000
people, you want to connect those people who do the same things all
over the globe. We’ve found that, when you make these connections,
employee satisfaction and effectiveness increase."
With 16 of his 17 direct reports working in offices around the globe,
Samargya is challenged with personally applying this networked society
concept while maintaining a sense of teamwork and collaboration.
"We use a lot of technology - in particular, video conferencing, in which
various team members present. Technology really helps to create a
global team that feels connected."
"Most businesses today compete on a global scale. Companies that are
nimble, knowlege-based organizations will win."