Without appropriate senior leadership, many L&D organizations run the risk of focusing on the delivery of training related tasks while misaligning with strategy. Top performing organizations, on the other hand, assign the task of L&D leadership to seasoned executives with strong business and relationship building skills. The strategic reason for this approach is that such individuals have a keen sense of how to leverage L&D effectively to achieve business goals.
The title CLO is a popular term used to describe the head of the learning and development unit (sometimes called a corporate university). In some cases, the CLO reports to the CEO and has broad mandates to be a strategic partner across business units.
Much of the enthusiasm for the CLO title has to do with the notion that it sends the message that learning is an important organizational value, with support from the executive suite. Though many CLOs don’t agree on the value of the title, they all seem to agree that what matters is the desire of executives at the highest level of the organization to treat learning as a strategic initiative that makes considerable contributions to the bottom line.
“I’m grateful to be in this network. The calls I had with other members gave me the information I needed to move my project forward.”Annette RollsLeadership Development Program Designer, Boeing
“We were able to realize almost immediate value—in terms of definitively quantifiable savings—by implementing the concepts introduced during this [Art of Negotiation] program.”Ken MurphyEVP of Sales and Operations, Mattress Firm
“In my particular case, I certainly care about the HR functions, but that’s not why I wake up every day. I care about advancing the ball down the field with our people’s professional development skills and knowledge. You guys focus 100% on the learning piece, and that’s what I like.”Jim StewartCLO, Teradata