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MillerCoors University: Brewing Up a Winning Sales Force
Friday, December 18, 2015
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MillerCoors, 2015 ATD BEST winner, has revamped its entire talent strategy. Front and center is MillerCoors University, a robust institute that offers a modern, blended approach to talent development for every MillerCoors employee. It is founded on a simple but profound three-point philosophy: 

  • Leaders teach—learning experiences must be guided by leaders, not professional instructors.
  • Use real work—training must focus on what's happening in the business and use real work to speed application.
  • Measure results—it must be results-oriented. 

Like most companies, because the commercial business and bottom line drives MillerCoors, a major initiative of the university and talent leaders was to improve the performance and impact of the company’s sales force. A December 7 webcast discusses how sales at MillerCoors evolved from a transactional approach to become a strategic partner and advisor. 

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The webcast walks participants through the prioritization process, guiding principles, and learning strategy and practices for the sales enablement program at the university. For example, MillerCoors adheres strongly to the approach of having “leaders teach.” They explain that learners realize the importance of the program when they see the vice president of sales teaching a module, rather than L&D at the front of the classroom. More importantly, shared ownership of the sales process and the learning process is critical. Embedding leaders into learning helps reinforce knowledge back on the job. 

Another key element to the MillerCoors learning approach is to use real work in the classroom. For example, sales pros will leave training with a selling story (materials and presentation) ready their next customer. They will have role played the presentation and received feedback from other learners and the leader. 

For more insight into how MillerCoors readys its sales force, listen to the full webcastWinning in Beer: Aligning L&D to Business Strategy, which is facilitated by: 

  • Stephen Buchman, director of Learning Operation
  • Yolaund Sulcer, manager of L&D for Integrated Supply Chain
  • Laura Hackett, senior director of L&D
  • Steve Flatt, director of commercial of L&D 

Find out how MillerCoors University aligns resources to the key pillars of the strategy to build the capabilities needed to ensure that all employees have the skills and ability to achieve these strategic goals.

About the Author

Ryann K. Ellis is an editor for the Association of Talent Development (ATD). She has been covering workplace learning and performance for ATD (formerly the American Society for Training & Development) since 1995. She currently manages ATD's Community of Practice blogs, as well as ATD's government-focused magazine, The Public Manager. Contact her at rellis@td.org. 

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