Middle Management Development from a Perspective of Human Resource Development: Case Study of the Japanese Automotive Parts Subsidiary in Thailand


  • Takatoshi Hojo
  • Katsunori Kaneko


Career Development, Middle Management, Organization Development, Training and Development


The objective of this research was to verify how a subsidiary of a Japanese automotive parts manufacturer in Thailand has transformed human resource development (HRD) for middle management in response to changes in its roles and requirements following business development and organizational maturity. This research employed a single case study approach as a qualitative research method, and data were collected from interviews, participant observation, and the company’s website. The research results showed middle management development as training and development was focused on acquiring the company-specific technical knowledge and skills to instruct subordinates for stable production through on-the-job training mainly for the early stage of the operation. Once the production process was on track, organizational development was conducted for middle management as leadership development for improving factory operations through active involvement in proposing the action plans to realize the company’s policies. This research also showed a perception gap in the HRD for middle management development between Japanese management and Thai middle management. Japanese management planned HRD with an awareness of enhancing organizational performance, but Thai middle management sought it with an awareness of enhancing individual capabilities. It was difficult to recognize those efforts as explicit HRD for the Thai middle management due to their implicit nature. Thus, Japanese manufacturers should offer an explicit training system and career path for Thai middle management to retain talented human resources for career development.


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