Effective training tips to increase your impact and effectiveness
How much do you spend on training? How effective is your training?
These effective training tips and guidelines will help focus your thinking about training and get you more bang for your development spend. Training can be expensive, particularly if it is ineffective. Too often training is undertaken with little thought of the desired outcomes. What are you trying to achieve?
Effective training tips for development success:
#1. What is required?
Start by determining what training is required, in order to deliver products or services to the customer (internal or external customers), in a manner that increases customer engagement and retention. Training should be in line with the strategic goals and objectives of the organisation, and in line with the personal goals of the individual where possible. Training goals can be procedural, behavioural or skill based. Strategically relevant training can increase your training effectiveness by ensuring the right people get the information and skills required to achieve the organisation’s strategic goals. Ensure the training is not just for “training sake”.
#2. Get buy-in.
Get a training buy-in to ensure motivated trainees. Agree with the relevant parties, why the specific training is needed, and what the benchmarks for the needed training are. Ensure everyone involved understands the objectives and what they are supposed to learn. This requires treating employees as individuals with personal goals and plans, instead of dictating requirements. The involvement of the individual ensures higher buy-in. This reduces resistance to the training, as there is a personal reason, benefit and involvement.
#3. Use Employee Generated Content (EGC)
Employee Generated Content is content created by your employees in collaboration with HR and L&D. Ideas, processes and experiences shared by employees can be a cost-effective way to drive and improved engagement and collaboration. This content is more authentic and credible than an off the shelf package, and it helps increase participation and a feeling of ownership.
#4. Align with brand/strategy.
Training should be in line with the corporate brand. Employee’s words, and actions should be congruent with the values of your brand. Effective training should support the development of employees in line with the brand image and delivery.
#5. Measure effectiveness.
Create a measure of effectiveness, and create an awareness of standards. What is required, how can it be measured against operational requirements, e.g. sales or service objectives. Training professionals should be able to help you identify the results and how they affect the bottom line.
#6. Changing behaviour takes time.
Behavioural change takes time, repetition and demonstrated effectiveness. Management need to demonstrate the new behaviour, as well as reward desired behaviour and outcomes to embed the new behaviour. Positive change in behaviour does not happen through a one-time lecture on the theory, it takes consistent coaching by the employee’s manager. Managers need to be given the tools to help them support their staff, and get best practice, as part of the team culture.
#7. Get feedback.
Get employee feedback. Ask your employees if the training was relevant to their job, their needs and their level of expertise. Ask how they plan to put their learning into action. Ask what worked and what didn’t, and what could be improved. Remember: the organization’s needs may not be the same as those of the employee.
#8. Review impact.
Review the effectiveness of training on a regular basis; ensuring the training is in line with the current needs of the organisation to deliver products or services to the customer (internal or external customers), in a manner that increases customer engagement and retention.