AfDB Managers Train to Meet Reform Goals

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As reforms undertaken by African Development Bank (AfDB) Group over the last decade enter a new and critical phase, the institution’s senior management has turned its focus on current and future managers who are expected to drive the process.

The reforms, which are designed to make the AfDB the first port of call for investors and researchers seeking information on African development, are taking the AfDB closer to its client countries through an extensive decentralization which has seen the establishment of over 25 field offices across the continent.

But critical to ensuring that the reforms and the decentralization produce the desired results, the AfDB has been attracting the best and brightest from across the globe and efforts are underway to ensure these competent and experienced resources are retained within the organization. To this effect, the AfDB corporate services management complex (CSVP) is organizing a series of training sessions for the institution’s current and future managers in the Tunisian city of Hammamet.

The training, which runs from July 14-16, 2010, is designed to underscore the key role managers play in ensuring that human resources hired by the AfDB actually serve the institution for many years.

Opening the session, CSVP vice-president, Kordje Bedoumra, urged participants to serve as agents of change, pointing out that for the institution to make great strides, managers had to build a team spirit within their departments, especially as the institution’s staff are from various work and cultural backgrounds.

Building a strong team spirit would go a long way in averting conflict and ensuring that meaningful key objectives were attained, he stressed. He advised that his objective was to help motivate Bank staff, make them proud of their institution and have them fully engaged in efforts at attaining the Bank's mission.

Also speaking during the training, the AfDB chief learning officer, Awuese Oku, underscored that the training would enhance efficiency and managerial connectivity with staff, pointing out that good relationships within team members would help to retain staff. The training, which is being delivered by the UK-based Cranfield University experts, is focusing on leadership and management development and it is underscoring the role of leadership in an AfDB that is in transition.

It is also expected to help participants gain a better understanding of who they are in terms of management and how they can improve upon their management style. A sound self-evaluation is key to a manager's success and wellbeing. Without such evaluation, a manager may not have the confidence necessary to deal with demanding challenges at the workplace, Cranfield University experts said.

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