The task
In times where skilled professionals are scarce and in consequence the bidding between companies intensifies, employers are looking out for alternatives. To assign a project externally to an agency or a freelancer might not always be the best solution. It could be advisable to hire a young professional with less experience but high potential and invest into a structured training “on the job”.

In the course of a coaching mandate, Kontx was assigned with the task of training a highly motivated junior employee during a pre-defined period for the specific tasks posed by her job. The employer has considered this possibility already during the recruiting process.

The solution
The junior employee’s range of tasks that had to be trained was extensive. Instead of classic media work the development and management of a modern marketing and communications department was key. The process of structuring this department was the first priority, furthermore, knowledge of event management, content and graphic design for brochures and other print products, development of a communication concept to address different stakeholders as well as the whole range of online marketing with a focus on website and social media was required. The strategic base of the work position was to create a thematically demanding content marketing for PARK innovAARE.

The hired junior employee held a master’s degree in media and had already made some first experiences in the working field of communications. She barely had the necessary practical work experience required for the job.

To evaluate the level of knowledge of the coachee Kontx started a deep analysis of the coachees competences. Through a custom made questionnaire which was adapted to the specific requirements of the job, as well as personal discussions, Kontx drew a detailed competence profile. Thus, the existing skills were determined and we found out in which fields special support was necessary. The thorough analysis allowed us to create an individual and modular designed coaching program.

Thus, 37 individually defined skills split into 6 task fields were collected and validated in the following interview. By comparing the marketing plan with the existing competences we were able to clearly define the content of the coaching program. The specific requirements of the company and the marketing plan were taken into account and laid the ground to prioritise the content of the coaching program in regards to the upcoming projects.

The schedule of the coaching program was split: Kontx coached the junior employee at his respective working place and part of the program was held within the agency (Kontx) itself.

The context
To establish this coaching program we did not pull a standardised recipe from a drawer. From day 1, the coachee, his job profile and the requirements from the company were at the core of the program. The coaching units were adapted ad hoc during the process to fit the current requirements. This way, the client was able to assign short term tasks which were integrated directly into the coaching program.

Within four months we managed to form a novice into a committed and skilled work force. He was provided with practice-proven tools from the agency know-how as well as profound methodological knowledge. The coachee was enabled to successfully deal with upcoming tasks.

The benefit
The client benefited in many ways. Initially, he was able to employ someone within reasonable time, knowing, that this person would be supported very intensively through a custom made coaching. Furthermore, the involvement of an agency ensured the applied practices and developed solutions were state of the art. The client gained a skilled work force which will be able to fulfil the requirements of the position with the newly acquired skills. In the end, the investment into personal education lead to motivation well above average on the side of the coachee including an eager readiness, loyalty and commitment to the job.

Companies which are not successful in finding skilled professionals at reasonable cost or do not have the time or the possibility to carry out an internal education may find an intensive coaching “on the job” a useful alternative. The criteria for success is in any case a precise analysis of the existing skills of the coachee as well as the coordination with the marketing plan.

About PARK innovAARE
PARK INNOVAARE is a unique innovation center situated in close proximity to the Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI) and its state-of-the-art accelerator-based large research facilities. Here, driven by the PSI’s expertise, innovations in the fields of accelerator technology, advanced materials and processes, humans and health, and energy are transformed into marketable products and solutions