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Wed 30 Oct 2019 05:34 PM

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XEd Learning Solutions: largest provider of Customised Executive Education for Senior Leaders

The Cornell Innovation Ambassador Program has been one of XEd Learning Solutions' most popular programs delivered in the UAE

XEd Learning Solutions: largest provider of Customised Executive Education for Senior Leaders

John Kallelil, Founder and Director of XED.

Headquartered in Singapore with operations in Middle East, India, and South East Asia,  XEd Learning Solutions, today is one of the region’s largest provider of Customised Executive Education for Senior Leaders.

Our current Partners include Cornell University, London School of Economics, Chicago Booth, University of Leeds, Kenan Flagler at UNC in Chapel Hill, National University of Singapore, Singapore Management University among others.

XEd clientele in the region includes Pepsico, IBM, Accenture, Willis Tower Watson, Bank of America, Meinhardt, Rockwell Automation, John Deere, Government bodies in South East Asia, KSA and UAE. These programs are being delivered out of Singapore, London, Dubai, Riyadh and New York.

More recently, both in UAE and KSA, we have been engaged over several multi-modular engagements with UAE Nationals covering Innovation Ambassador Program, National Career Development Program, Leadership Development Program, Creativity and Innovation, Emotional Intelligence, Creating Future Leaders Program, Middle Management Development Programs, Coaching and Mentoring, Leadership Agility and Financial Acumen among others.

These programs have been delivered in partnership with top global business schools and have received very high participant ratings. Over the last 2 years we have imparted highly impactful programs to more than 5,000 employees within the government over both classroom and online engagements.

How do you address innovation as critical learning goal among organisations and government in GCC?

The Cornell Innovation Ambassador Program has been one of our most popular programs delivered in the UAE.

Transformation to become Innovation Ambassadors cannot happen overnight. In association with Cornell University, we have designed a 1-month journey to seed the Innovation mindset deep within these delegates. This could be just enough time for these delegates to learn, apply, prototype, and re-learn

We commence with a 3-day Classroom Module on Leading Innovation for Self, Teams and specifically for the organisation. At the end of 3 days, Innovation Projects are scoped, milestones are set, peer teaching assignments to be completed over the next month are discussed.

The participants will then invest their time over a month to apply what they have learnt in the classroom to their projects. They will also spend time cascading their learnings from the first module, to their peers and subordinates.

During the month, the teams would also have two milestone reviews by the faculty, checking in on the project and the efforts invested to further their knowledge to their peers and subordinates.

At end of the month, the program closes with a 2-day classroom engagement and will cover innovation best practices, especially in the context of organisation. The final module also discusses critical thinking around innovation, will further invest in experimenting and championing Innovation.

The program will end with project report outs, final assessments, and awarding certificates of completing the program. A set of participants who have excelled during the engagement, will be awarded the aspirational Cornell ‘Innovation Ambassador’ Certificate

Do you think today organisations are ready for digital disruptions? Can you elaborate on your work around digital leadership

UAE has been in the forefront of Digital Disruptions. Sometime in 2018, the UAE government launched the Emirates Blockchain Strategy. By 2021, 50% of all government transactions will be over the Blockchain Platform.

Both UAE and KSA have invested in several initiatives to embrace the digital future

Our approach on Digital Leadership consists of three parts:

  1. Digital Orientation and Transformation: Apart from introducing strong frameworks around Digital Transformation, the Classroom Engagement includes developing a real time Chat Bot prototype allowing senior participants to appreciate Artificial Intelligence 
  2. Data Driven Decision Making: The classroom engagement introduces data mining. The faculty shares toolkits to crunch numbers and more importantly scientifically make decisions instead of mere heuristics
  3. Fintech, AI and Blockchain: Innovation and disruptions cannot happen in a vacuum. 

The final part of the program de-mystifies the complex world of Machine Learning, AI and Cryptocurrencies to impress on real world applications.

Future of Learning

Over the last few years, the world of business has tread into extremely unfamiliar territory: an era of the tremendous velocity of change. The emphasis on efficiencies has never been so profound.

Look around you: many of the billion-dollar companies that you can’t do without like Airbnb, Botim, Amazon, Facebook did not exist 20 years ago. So learning, unlearning, reskilling is a mandatory journey and not a luxury anymore. The differentiation between individuals, companies and governments would be their ability to learn new things at an extra-ordinary pace. And the strong will swim.

So how will learning actually happen : E-Learning has been around for more than 3 decades now. However, superior bandwidth has enabled us to deliver phenomenal content synchronously. So, all around we have managed to scale learning across levels very quickly.

That said, we may be looking at a silver bullet problem. As governments and companies get even more organised; access becomes even more limited. Classroom engagements offering high touch and superior engagement will continue to be far more impactful.

What will be taught, however, will be cutting edge topics skilling billions of knowledge workers. We are familiar with the saying: do not give a person the fish, teach him/her.

To take that analogy further, in the future it will not enough teach him/her to fish, we may now need to: (1) teach him/her to fish in a turbulent waters; (2) teach him/her to teach others to fish as well.

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