Training in the Workplace

31st March 2014

Training in the Workplace

I am sure most businesses appreciate the benefits of undertaking staff training but I suspect it often takes a back seat to the day to day pressures of running a business in the current economic climate. 

It might seem like a large commitment both in terms of time and expense but this need not be the case and often informal training can be as effective as more formal training such as attending courses.  Team meetings with well thought out agendas are a good forum for staff to share knowledge and ideas. 

One of the pitfalls to avoid with regard to organising team meetings is to avoid the trap of having an agenda set out by management.  Staff will engage more freely in a meeting if they have had input into the agenda topics.

Staff appraisals can also fall into the same trap whereby management use them to impose their own solutions on an employee where an issue with regard to under performance has been identified. Appraisals that enable staff to engage and put forward their own solutions to issues will generate a far more positive outcome.  If the solution agreed between the staff member and the line manager is attending a training course even the way the appropriate course is then identified impacts on the likely success of the course in addressing the training need.  It is very easy for management to say they will find the right solution and then time pressures mean they under deliver either by being slow in identifying the course, choosing the wrong one or worst of all not finding one at all.  Empowering the staff member to find the course for themselves and then engaging in a discussion as to why it is suitable, reaffirming its importance to achieving the objective to be addressed will achieve far greater “buy in” from the member of staff than an imposed solution. 

Training can take many forms but whether it be quite specific course delivered material for members of staff on distinct aspects of their areas of performance or informal training in terms of sharing of knowledge on a peer to peer basis on the job, or in such format as periodic team meetings the outcome that will be achieved is heavily influenced by the learning environment that you create and one that works inclusively with your staff is far more effective than an imposed solution.

Author: Matthew Benton, Senior Manager

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