Alcatel-Lucent’s Learning Leader Sergio Fasce
What is the role of the University and its value-add?
Sergio: First and foremost, Alcatel-Lucent University’s role is to ensure that our customers, partners and employees have the knowledge and skills to effectively perform in the marketplace. The University is leveraging our technology expertise to position Alcatel-Lucent as an industrial specialist in IP Networking and Ultra-Broadband Access.
As our company’s knowledge leader, the University is approaching learning from entirely new avenues. We are building communities of peers and experts that enable information sharing and collaboration across the globe, personalizing the learning experience and ensuring that all students have access to the appropriate breadth and depth of knowledge to productively use our products and solutions.
Can you give us a statistical profile of Alcatel-Lucent University?
Sergio: In 2012, Alcatel-Lucent University delivered 1.8 million student hours with over 850,000 hours delivered to our customers in 158 countries. The University serviced 518 unique companies, supporting training needs on 197 Alcatel-Lucent products and offered certification programs in Service Routing, LTE and Optics.
How is Alcatel-Lucent University positioning itself as an industry leader?
Sergio: The University team understands that our industry exists in a constant state of change with rapidly evolving technologies and products. We approach learning from the same standpoint; our attitude is that we must grow with the market. We are shifting from traditional learning methodologies to a student-centric model based on how people learn in today’s fast-paced business environment.
This approach puts the student in control of their own learning so they can focus on relevant, business-critical knowledge. The student can choose the courses, level of expertise and communities of interest that are important to their job role and interests and continually measure their proficiency in selected competencies. We provide learning experiences that are technology-enabled, utilizing a well-rounded set of delivery options, everything from video shorts to virtual instructor-led sessions for convenience and cost containment. And through our Alcatel-Lucent learning communities we create continuous knowledge-sharing environments. We see this direction as the future of learning. In that spirit, we have launched My Personal Learning Experience, My PLE, a high-impact learning application that alters the student experience.
How is Alcatel-Lucent University supporting the company’s Shift Plan?
Sergio: The Shift Plan is a fundamental change for Alcatel-Lucent, both in what we do and how we do it. As our focus shifts from being a broad generalist to an IP networking and ultra-broadband specialist, the required knowledge and skill sets of our global workforce change as well. Employees are performing new roles with new responsibilities: learning is key to helping them make that transition.
The successful execution of the Shift Plan is also dependent on a change in mindset. Building a high-performance culture requires exceptional leadership and change management skills across the organization. Alcatel-Lucent University plays a critical part in leading the company’s mobilization initiative and helping to guide our global team in changing how we work together to ensure maximum productivity.
How do today’s learners like to learn – what’s innovative about learning?
Sergio: I think we all are beginning to understand that learning doesn’t have to take place in a traditional classroom or in a conventional manner. Today’s learners want maximum flexibility and relevance. They want to be able to set the pace for their learning experience and create an individualized learning path based on their job roles, level of expertise and required competencies. Learning needs to take place on their timetable and be cost effective whether we are talking about web-based training, a community of peers exchanging best practices or a virtual instructor-led program delivered to their desktops.
And I believe this breaking with the traditional learning paradigm– approaching learning from the student’s perspective — is what makes Alcatel-Lucent innovative in the learning space.
What sets your University team apart from the competition?
Sergio: What makes us different is that we really take an outside-in approach to learning. We first invest the time to understand our customers’ and clients’ strategic priorities and business challenges in order to create highly targeted and relevant learning solutions. We are a true learning partner and have a stake in the game when it comes to our customers’ success.
We are a highly motivated and experienced global team ready to support you; we are fully prepared and ready to support your business. As a start, I invite everyone to take a few minutes to visit our website to learn more about our range of services and our approach to learning.
What is your opinion of learning?
Sergio: I strongly believe that learning can be a competitive advantage for a company with a direct impact on performance and customer loyalty. It’s really a pretty basic concept: customers who are able to gain proficiency and quickly bring products to market are going to be more satisfied and are more likely to do business with you in the future. Likewise, employees who have the skills and knowledge to effectively position and support your products can be a real differentiator in the market. So I view learning as a strategic asset that can spell the difference between winning and losing: it’s just that important.
* Sergio Fasce, has responsibility for leading the company’s principal learning organization, Alcatel-Lucent University. Alcatel-Lucent University designs and delivers learning solutions for customers, partners and employees worldwide.
Sergio Fasce, 48, has more than 20 years of experience in the telecommunications industry. He began his career with Marconi Communications and joined Alcatel in 2004. His background includes various positions in Sales, General Management, Strategy and R&D with an emphasis on efficiency and performance excellence in globally distributed organizations.