When Comcast Wholesale wanted to develop a customized leadership development program for 20 of its senior-level directors, Todd Porch, vice president, Comcast Wholesale, had a clear vision. He sought to create a customized program that would dive deep into best practices and equip leaders with the industry-specific leadership skills to make a lasting difference at the organization.
Porch and the Daniels Executive Education team, led by Assistant Dean Kevin Cuthbert, created a rich nine-month program to build leaders across functional areas. Topics include leadership, customer experience, strategic thinking and leading change. The program kicked off with a three-day teambuilding experience in Estes Park, Colorado, in September 2015 and will finish in May 2016.
One of the unique aspects of the program is that a Comcast Wholesale senior leader co-facilitates each monthly half-day session alongside a Daniels Executive Education faculty member. “Our goal was to create a differentiated leadership development experience where some of our best and brightest can become aligned across functional groups, take what they learn and teach their own teams within their spheres of influence,” Porch says. “We’re leveraging both the academic and leadership development knowledge of Daniels and the experience of our senior team to develop a program that allows participants to make material differences at Comcast Wholesale.” In fall 2016, Comcast Wholesale plans to usher in a second class of leaders across other divisions.
Outside of the Daniels Executive Education partnership, Comcast Wholesale is involved with Daniels in various other ways. The company is a silver-level member of the Daniels Corporate Partners program. Porch guest lectures in graduate courses and Comcast Wholesale’s Senior Vice President and General Manager Matt McConnell has been an adjunct professor since 2011.
Last fall, Comcast Wholesale helped the College roll out a brand new Activation Challenge. In this one-day orientation component of the full-time MBA program, MBA students learned the phases of discovery, ideation, prototyping and insight capture that are integral to the design thinking problem-solving process and applied them to a real-world challenge at Comcast—specifically, improving the customer experience.
Comcast Wholesale also recruits Daniels students for internships and jobs. In recent years, Comcast Wholesale and other Comcast divisions have hired several graduate and undergraduate students for full-time positions. Comcast currently employs at least a dozen Daniels alumni and upwards of 50 DU alumni.
Porch describes the partnership with Daniels as “more of a relationship than a business transaction.” “I felt from the start the Daniels Executive Education team grasped what we were trying to accomplish,” he says. “They understood how to deliver curriculum while also tapping into the people side of our business. The feedback I’m receiving is that our leaders have never experienced something of this depth before in their career. We’re constantly taking what we learn and applying it to our daily business here at Comcast Wholesale.”
Comcast Wholesale employs more than 250 people in its Denver office and 620 total across the country. Comcast Wholesale is a business-to-business division of Comcast serving the cable, programming and advertising industries with proven technologies that help them to simplify complex processes and bridge the gap between broadcast and digital distribution.
“Our partnership with Daniels has been fantastic,” says Porch. “The programs and events we have participated in together are aligned on both sides. Bringing our teams together has been fruitful on many fronts. I look forward to the continued collaboration, and not only transforming business, but also the leaders who will take these lessons and make a difference in other people’s lives.”
Comcast Wholesale, a division of Comcast Cable, is in the business of pioneering simple solutions for customers. Their complete approach reduces the complexities of distribution through advanced network architecture, an extensive distribution footprint, continuous innovation of digital technologies, and optimized media management for a broad range of content. Scalable from small independents to global companies, Comcast Wholesale’s service portfolio creates a clear path to technologies that let users do more and do more simply. Learn more at comcastwholesale.com.