How Orient Craft made its supervisors ‘superior’!

by Dheeraj Tagra

09-July-2019  |  5 mins read

Archana Tomar Mann, VP – Compliance, CSR, Training & Development, Orient Craft – Woven & Sweaters
Archana Tomar Mann, VP – Compliance, CSR, Training & Development, Orient Craft – Woven & Sweaters

Supervisors play a vital role in an apparel manufacturing unit as they are the main connect between workers and management. Hence, organisations need to focus on the capacity building of their supervisors who are the role models for other workers besides motivating them to perform better at the workplace. In an interview, Archana Tomar Mann, VP – Compliance, CSR, Training & Development, Orient Craft – Woven & Sweaters shared how her company is putting in commendable efforts in this direction and getting expected results too.

At Orient Craft (OC), worker well-being is a part of our business decision. To ensure that workers in Orient Craft are empowered and have their own voice, the company runs various capacity building programmes at the workplace (see list at bottom). With the help of such capacity building projects and external training like ‘seven habits of highly effective people’, the organisation is able to identify and promote the most efficient workers to supervisory roles.

“Over the years, Orient Craft’s collaboration with various brands towards workers’ betterment has resulted in confident and productive workers. So, from this year onwards, we are moving one step ahead and will be focusing on building the capacity of our supervisors,” says Archana. She further adds that with the help of our invaluable customers, we have started programmes like Supervisory Skill Training (by Gap Inc.), Leadership for Life (by M&S) and Women in Leadership (by ESPRIT), among others.

The main objective of these programmes is to develop professionalism and good interpersonal skills in the supervisors, which in turn will help the workers improve their performance and will further help create an effective and friendly working environment.

The content and the structure of these programmes are designed in a way, which will help the supervisors develop a good healthy relationship and manage workers effectively. As the next step towards worker well-being, enhancing the skills and the capacity building of supervisors has become the need of the hour, as workers look up to them. Their better performance ultimately helps the organisation in business sustainability.

“So far, various training programmes were conducted in different phases, and in some programmes, buyers also supported well. Few of them were of short-term, like 3 full days while few were of 6 to 8 months. One such training programme where best supervisors (based on their attendance, behaviour and overall performance) were selected, was conducted outside the factory premises. This made the supervisors feel good and concentrate well on training,” she said.

Supervisor

So far almost 120 supervisors have been trained under various supervisory behavioural training programmes. In some programmes, they received study materials in easy language and further trained other colleagues too. Workers, who were not educated much, but had good soft as well as technical skills, also got the opportunity to get training and were promoted as supervisors. Women workers and supervisors also actively participated in such trainings. Interestingly, in some training sessions, supervisors and their seniors sat together.

Improvements identified

  • Helped supervisors imbibe leadership qualities
  • Supervisors had significant behavioural change as they were more humble after training
  • There was a strong sense of responsibility
  • Overall supervisors and workers had better understanding
  • Workers were also happy as supervisors developed thehabitof listening; overall communication was improved
  • More team work reflected as both supervisors and workers demonstrated proactive and positive approach towards all challenges (There was more work-related discussion amongthem)
  • Overall productivity and quality also improved due to all these factors

Various capacity building programmes implemented

  • P.A.C.E. (Personal Advancement and Career Enhancement by Gap Inc.)
  • Leadership for Life (by M&S)
  • HER Respect (by American Eagle Outfitters (AEO), M&S)
  • Workplace Cooperation Programme(by Gap Inc.)
  • Gender Equality (by M&S)
  • Women in Leadership (by ESPRIT)
  • POSH Awareness (by NEXT, GAP, M&S)

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