Miki Lane Bio PhotoBy Miki Lane, ISPI Immediate Past-President

Prior to THE Performance Improvement Conference in Orlando, ISPI’s newest corporate member, Sinotrac, asked if I would give a talk about HPT at their Spring Client Meeting in Beijing, China.

During the conference, I, along with Judy Hale and April Davis, met Frank Fu who is Sinotrac’s representative in the United States. He was in Orlando to meet with us and to participate in the CPT Workshop. Frank is an Assistant Professor of Marketing in the College of Business Administration at the University of Missouri at St. Louis. After meeting the affable Dr. Fu, I agreed to the presentation request, but after the conference, I was so drained I began to second guess my decision.

The last time I was in China was just before the 2008 Olympics; the airport was new and not yet fully functioning. The city was full of construction cranes and there was a palpable feeling of excitement, building up to welcoming the world to a giant party that would showcase China’s burgeoning economy. Today, Beijing is a bustling, cosmopolitan city of over 20 million people. Every Fortune 1000 corporation in the world is clearly visible and there is a “can do” vibrancy in the air that is contagious.

Sinotrac is a training and development company that is moving toward a performance improvement consultancy approach. They have 38 employees and work with over 100 clients. Every quarter they hold one-day educational meetings for their clients. This particular meeting I attended focused on the ADDIE model of instructional systems design and how to transfer training to on-the-job performance. They had two in-company presenters, and I spoke for three hours in the afternoon about HPT, ISPI, and the CPT. I had spent the previous evening with the translator helping her understand our specialized vocabulary and the stories I planned to tell (the company had already translated the PowerPoint slides I sent in advance).

There were more 100 people at the conference and given the lecture format of the other speakers, I tried to create an interactive session that would dovetail into the other presentations. While it was difficult, given the language and cultural differences, the participants seemed to enjoy themselves.

The next day I spent the morning with Sinotrac’s management and staff discussing how they and ISPI can work together in the future. They showed me a number of their client projects, and I’m pleased to state they are taking a systems approach in their work. They have documented results of their efforts and seem to be following ISPI’s RSVP processes.

Their desire is to be a representative of ISPI in China. They feel they would generate membership, bring interested clients to conferences, and most importantly run CPT and Principles & Practices workshops and other ISPI programs locally in China. There seems to be a great interest in the CPT designation, and they could get their staff and clients to generate applications and in the future possibly help in the review of applications submitted in Chinese.

Part of the Sinotrac team will be visiting the ISPI headquarters in late May to discuss next steps. In the meantime, the Board is talking about this and the Society’s agenda for the upcoming year. Stay tuned for further developments.