HR Trendsetter: Yashwant Mahadik, Senior Vice President, Head of HR Business Transformation, IT & Global Head of Learning, Philips

picture of Yashwant Mahadik

Audio: Yashwant Mahadik on the top recruiting challenge in 2015 and how to overcome it.

Yashwant Mahadik led his team in establishing a corporate university built for the 21st century. “We have been through a learning transformation,” he says of creating Philips University, a journey that began two years ago. “We’re still in the midst of it.” The university for the Amsterdam-based global technology company incorporates not just new technological approaches—including learning management systems and social learning—but also emerging scientific insights on how individuals learn based on their unique styles.

“There is research and outcomes on the new science of learning,” Mahadik says. Philips University is based on the so-called 70/20/10 principle, which states that development is most effective when 10 percent of learning comes from formal settings such as the classroom or e-learning, 20 percent through mentoring, and 70 percent on the job. —Christina Folz

Transforming Tech

A decade ago, companies spent a lot of time, energy and money customizing their own learning management systems. Today, the focus is on leveraging best-in-class technology provided by vendors and social platforms.

His Advice

Create a culture where learning is the goal, rather than just the imparting of education. Schools are often criticized for focusing students more on how to pass exams than to actually learn. The same can happen in organizations.

How He’s Making a Difference

We’ve relied on the NPS—or net promoter score—to assess the effectiveness of our investment, as well as metrics on the cost, quality and speed of learning. Gone are the days when you could take months to design and deliver learning capabilities.


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