Students attending Gucci's École de l'Amour training program.

GUCCI’S ARTISANS: Gucci is committed to help support tomorrow’s craftsmen introducing a training program dubbed “École de l’Amour,” or School of Love.

Comprising three different courses, the initiative is aimed at teaching and passing down the luxury company’s artisanal skills and its know-how to the next generation of workers, as well as to its current employees. “The heritage of Gucci is made up of people and their knowledge. Training is the most powerful method and tool we have to enhance our people and our products,” said Marco Bizzarri, Gucci’s president and chief executive officer.

Gucci’s artisans and managers, as well as retired employees, will teach the courses. They include the Craftsmanship School, or Scuola dei Mestieri, a six-month training program dedicated to leather goods’ design and production, held at the company’s ArtLab industrial complex dedicated to leather goods and shoes, which Gucci christened last April in Scandicci, near Florence, and the Factory School, a bimonthly course aimed at raising artisans skilled in a specific leather goods manufacturing process. This is held at different Gucci manufacturing plants and has enrolled 60 students since it launched in October last year. Both courses are dedicated to school graduates or unemployed people aged 18 to 26. The company also said it plans to develop similar courses for shoe production.

“It is no coincidence that École de l’Amour was born from the Gucci ArtLab, which is the perfect expression of the corporate culture that we are building and developing: a place that promotes learning and the development of skills, a laboratory of ideas, an environment where we work with passion; indeed, I should really say, where we work with love,” explained Bizzarri. The ArtLab industrial complex in Scandicci employs more than 800 people out of the 2,400 people working in Gucci’s manufacturing hubs. The plant covers 399,600 square feet over a restructured and expanded former hosiery production company.

A look at Gucci ArtLab in Florence.

A look at Gucci ArtLab in Florence.  Courtesy Photo

The third course, called Technical Academy, addresses Gucci’s employees, who are constantly trained on new skills according to the company’s needs and in line with its value of sharing know-how and expertise.

In keeping with the luxury company’s commitment to establishing a sustainable business model under its 10-year “Culture of Purpose” sustainability program, the new training courses are also gathered under the Gucci Equilibrium platform. The latter was unveiled in June, one day prior to World Environment Day and was billed as a destination “designed to connect people, planet and purpose.”

The web site collects the initiatives promoted by the luxury company in terms of sustainability and social responsibility and was seen as a communications tool useful for the 13,000 Gucci employees around the world.