HR development of the future

"Training and HR development are essential in order to attract and to retain the best staff," says Angelika Antz- Hieber, Head of DTC. "The training facility is a useful addition to our internal training curriculum." But Allianz is not the only company to benefit from these new methods. The facility is open to external companies as well. "As part of HR development "Dialogue in the Dark" and "Dialogue in Silence" have proven to be creative and powerful tools," explains Antz-Hieber. "For this reason many of our clients return to the DTC." More than 1,300 people have already participated in training sessions at the DTC – with numbers increasing steadily.

Self-awareness in an unfamiliar environment

"Dialogue in the Dark" training sessions are conducted by visually impaired trainers in total darkness in cooperation with internal coaches. The focus is on topics such as communication, effective cooperation and leadership which are conveyed through practical exercises and reflecting on experiences gained in the dark. "Dialogue in Silence" workshops take participants to another world – that of silence. Participants work with hearing impaired trainers in a soundproof space.

"In this environment they discover their repertoire of non- verbal expression such as mime and gesture, and further evolve their communication skills," says Antz-Hieber describing the impact of these unusual methods. "The participants change their behavior because they suddenly leave their normal social routines. They have to disengage from well-known behavioral patterns and to adapt to new situations. Therefore, they need courage and trust in themselves as well as in their team."

Tailor-made training sessions

The DTC provides training programs for HR development, ranging from trainee to management level. Prior to each training session the DTC's experts do an extensive analysis of the background, status and training needs of a group and adapt the training measures individually. Further topics are diversity management, change management, core value workshops and meetings in the dark.

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