Safran and AVIC team up to train managers

Safran and AVIC* signed an MOU on manager training, stemming from the overall strategic partnership agreement that they had concluded in 2010, on 23 September 2011. We spoke to Safran Corporate University, Training and Development Director Gilbert Font.

This agreement provides the formal terms and conditions that will govern cooperation between Safran and AVIC in general, and manager training at their in-house universities, in particular. But what will all that mean in practice?

The ultimate goal is to promote manager exchanges. Safran will be organizing training sessions for AVIC managers and vice-versa. Our main objective is to pave the way for future industrial cooperation projects that the two groups will be launching a few years down the road. These courses deal with basic aspects of management (program management, quality management, marketing management, etc). They will help to nurture shared managerial culture and help people to speak the same ‘language' – which will be very helpful – vital, actually – when AVIC and Safran people start working together.

The agreement also involves exchanging lecturers (experts and top executives) from both companies. AVIC CEO Lin Zuoming, for example, spoke about his group and strategy to a group of young French and international managers that had gathered in Beijing for the Management Development Program (MDP) training last September. We will be doing more of the same.

What are the issues underlying this initiative?
From our perspective, we want to build long-term, trust-based relationships with our partners in China – especially AVIC – as we are embarking on an amazing adventure with them. So the first thing we have to do is get to know each other, share the same vision and align our operating methods on our future industrial cooperation projects. So we are hoping that these courses and exchanges with our Chinese peers will support Safran's expansion and cement its presence in that strategic part of the world where tomorrow's leading aerospace players – AVIC (the company that embodies China's aerospace industry) and COMAC (the company that is building the C919) – are emerging today.

*Aviation Industry Corporation of China, Ltd.