Staff Reporter

`Paatshala' is a training plan geared towards producing results

CHENNAI: This year, the 90 employees from Chennai's Ogilvy office are being sent back to school.

`Paatshala' is a comprehensive training plan geared towards producing results, said R. Krishna Mohan, Ogilvy national head of training and development.

Ogilvy has always been considered a school of learning in the advertising industry, and is the company that gives the best training, said Mr. Mohan. In the last decade though, things have changed due to the frenetic pace that employees work, and focus has shifted to creative productivity and profits.

The new training strategy works at three levels -- the Asia Pacific region, national and local. At the local level, the first step was a day trip for the Ogilvy employees to Pathway, an NGO for mentally challenged children and destitute orphans. Pathway runs a school and a farm in Melmaruvathur, about 90 km from the city.

The Ogilvy team interacted with the children, played cricket with them and watched them perform to understand what exactly Pathway was about. They also mowed the lawns, painted the school and cleared the grounds. The idea is to now work on an integrated brand communication strategy and plan for Pathway to help them find individual and corporate sponsorship to support the children. "The trip to Pathway and the interaction was to help the Ogilvy people understand what they would be communicating about," said Mr. Mohan.

The training will continue with two local level programmes a month, in basics such as time management, improving writing skills and managing client relationships. There will also be programmes on the national and Asia Pacific level.