How much money was spent on training and development by your organization last year that failed to deliver the results you were looking for? It is very common for employee training classes to come up short in terms of providing your workplace with information that is immediately useful.
In most organizations, it is even more difficult to demonstrate actual behavior change that is the result of training content. Is this discouraging? Yes, of course, it is. So what steps can an organization take to ensure that employee training transfers into the workplace?
Your organization can get a training and development support procedure created that will ensure your employee training actually works and make it more effective for your organization. The following approaches and suggestions can make your employee training much more transferable and effective, and applying them will result in significant differences in your overall performance.
Create Training Stickiness Prior To Employee Training Sessions
Do the following before employee training sessions take place to increase the chances that the training that is done will actually be transferred into your workplace.
Be sure that the need is a real opportunity for training and development. Conduct a thorough skill and needs analysis to determine what your real need is for employee development and training. Ensure that the problem you are trying to solve or the opportunity that you want to pursue is an actual training issue.
If there is some aspect of their job that an employee is failing at, determine whether the employee has been provided with the tools and time needed in order to perform the job properly. Does the employee have a clear understanding of what she is expected to do? Consider whether or not the employee has the necessary talent and temperament for the current position she is in. Is this job a good interest, ability, and skill fit for her?
Provide a specific context for your employee development and training, Give the employee information on why the information, skill enhancement, or new skill is necessary. Make sure that the employee understands the connection between her job and the training.
A custom employee training programs’ impact can be enhanced even further when the employee understands what the link is between the training she is receiving and her ability to contribute to the organization accomplishing its business goals and plans.
It is very important to also provide recognition and rewards when the training is successfully completed and applied. (For example, people like receiving completion certificates. I know of one company that lists completed training sessions and employees names in their company newsletter.)
The contextual information helps to motivate employees when they are attending the training. It also helps employees who are looking for relevant information that can be applied following the training session.
Provide relevant training and development that directly relates to the information or skill that you want the employee to have in order to expand their work skills. You might need to internally design employee training sessions if your training providers don’t have anything that specifically meets your needs. Or look for a provider who is willing to customize its offerings so that they meet the specific needs that you have.
It is very ineffective to request that an employee goes through a training session that is about general communication when the immediate need that she has is learning how to give feedback in such a way that defensive behavior is minimized. The employee will view the training session as either too basic or a huge waste of time. The potential learning will be invalidated by the complaints.
Whenever possible, try to make sure the employee training is directly connected to the employee’s work objectives and job. If your organization invests in self-development as part of its appraisal process, be sure the connection is clear.
Focus on employee training and development with measurable objectives along with specified outcomes that can transfer to the job directly. Obtain or design employee training with clearly stated objectives and measurable outcomes. Make sure that the content will help employees attain the information or skills that the objectives promise.
Once the employee has the information, she will know exactly what can be expected from the training session. This will make it much less likely that she will be disappointed. She also will have ways that she can apply the training to achieve actual workplace objectives.