“How we do what we do”

CLIENT: IBM Rational’s success using Kepner-Tregoe Resolve for service and support and the growth of the IBM Brazil Software Lab brought KT Resolve training to South America. IBM BSL has software support teams spanning many different IBM software brands including Rational, Information Management, Cloud & Smart Infrastructure, Analytics, Sterling and others—working in Spanish, Portuguese and English.

CHALLENGE: The challenge for IBM BSL was that KT Resolve “should be how we do what we do.” IBM BSL supports a highly technical client base that is more likely to report more complex problems than those raised in other technical support environments. While there had been some limited KT Resolve training, training needed to be expanded and properly supported. The plan was ambitious: to reach 100% of all support engineers and managers trained with KT Resolve, implement a coaching initiative and have all support teams using KT at full throttle.

APPROACH: IBM BSL had some tech support personnel trained in KT Resolve and a few KT coaches. Now training capabilities were to be expanded by sending a support manager to KT’s Leadership Development Institute in Princeton to become a KT Program Leader. Experienced in many different initiatives for improving support processes, soft skills training and coaching, foreign language programs and overall client satisfaction, the support manager, as a KT Program Leader, returned to lead refresher courses in KT Resolve and to train the remaining support professionals.

In addition, a KT revitalization initiative brought the KT approach to the forefront of support practices. This “KT Champions” initiative identified engineers that made good use of the KT techniques in working with support tickets (known within IBM as PMRs.) Moderated by a KT coach, these Champions started reviewing PMRs under the light of KT and then replicated their experience within their teams. The systematic KT approach became top-of-mind and those that had not yet been trained were asking for their turn, creating much-needed momentum for the next round of training. Another key initiative was to train additional KT coaches to support and facilitate others. Coaches are selected based on their Situation Appraisal and Problem Analysis documentation. The ambitious improvement program continues to be supported by the KT Program Leader who regularly makes presentations at IBM technical events that introduce how KT is used in the software support community.