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A SEA CHANGE Among the profound disruptions of the last 20-30 years, we have experienced: • Severe economic booms, bubbles and busts and their often revolutionary ef- fects on business and the transportation industry


• Constant acceleration in the develop- ment, adaptation and demand for tech- nologies of all kinds


• Emerging and dangerous national secu- rity threats, adding complexity to his- toric challenges to the security of our nation and defending its interests


• Continuous, rapid adjustment of gov- ernment policy, approaches and organi- zations to its inherent responsibility to address and mitigate threats to the se- curity of the nation, especially at home


• Unprecedented change to the funda- mental ways people live, work, com- municate, learn and view relationships to their employers


EMBRACING CHANGE We at NDTA choose to embrace these changes. Consequently, we are developing an Education and Professional Development Strategy to expand benefits and services to increase our value to you and your organiza- tions. When implemented, this strategy will build upon past successes, while greatly in- creasing the value of being part of this asso- ciation. At its heart, the strategy will address the educational and professional develop- ment needs of transportation professionals in private industry, and government organi- zations with a role or interest in the national security of the United States. Transportation is still the key element enabling all elements of our nation’s power to ensure its security.


Figure 1.


PROFESSIONAL EDUCATION IN AN ERA OF LOGISTICS CHANGE From top to bottom, great professional as- sociations are designed and operated with a


fundamental mission that starts with


providing membership learning and profes- sional growth in a trusted environment. In the transportation professional’s current en- vironment, government and private sector professional education programs and schools are being shortened or combined. There is less opportunity for on-the-job learning, and dramatically fewer funds available to educate and stay current on rapid changes to busi- ness and government. More and more of the learning and development effort—both time and cost—is now owned by the indi- vidual transportation professional. Com- pany and government professional develop- ment or education programs to prepare their workforces for increased responsibility and advancement are fading into the past. Compounding this challenge for trans-


portation professionals, life today often overwhelms the time to think, absorb, and work through with colleagues what change means to our profession. There is less time for them to take the actions essential, ei- ther in private companies or government organizations, to develop and grow in their profession. This is the complex challenge we must help our membership overcome. Education, as a primary stated purpose of NDTA, is becoming an even more im- portant component of our future. It is the key way to increase both perceived and actual value of membership to individ- ual and organizational members—both corporate and government entities—in this environment of fierce competition for resources and professional transport-


A PREVIEW OF THE WORKING STRATEGY Based on an in-depth self-examination, we’ve begun to develop a concrete educa- tional strategy. The strategy is being driven by the six strategic thoughts highlighted in this issue’s President’s Corner. Final approv- al of this NDTA Education and Professional Development Strategy is planned for very early 2017, followed by a five-year imple- mentation plan with set metrics for success.


ENDS, WAYS AND MEANS


The strategy design is based on the classic “Ways, Ends and Means” planning model familiar to the military, as well as many strategic planners in business. It is influ- enced by the work of Dr. Chuck Bam- ford, author of eight books including the market leading textbooks in strategy and entrepreneurship. He is also an Adjunct Professor at the Mendoza College of Busi- ness, University of Notre Dame and Fuqua School of Business at Duke. The strategy will articulate the “Ends”— a statement of where to go, what to be- come and what to achieve. The “Ends” will be tangible and measurable. It then will identify the “Ways” essential and core to NDTA operations that will increase our capacity to provide relevant and meaning- ful programs and other learning oppor- tunities to membership. Finally, aligned to the “Ends” and “Ways,” will be a set of “Means”—specific efforts or tasks nec- essary to enable or resource the NDTA


ers’ time. The education strategy must be game changing and innovative to encour- age membership and active participation in all aspects of NDTA.


10 | Defense Transportation Journal | OCTOBER 2016


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