Maximize the Impact of Training
By Ron Kaufman, World Wide Information Outlet
Friday, May 7, 2004; 12:00pm EST
Training your staff is an essential investment in today's changing
and competitive environment. But just sending staff to attend training
programs is not enough. You can maximize the impact of your investment
by following these key guidelines for management and staff interaction
"before", "during" and "after" the training program.
Before the Training Program
Review with staff
why they were selected for the program and discuss anticipated
benefits for the organization. This shifts their perspective from
purely personal, "I am going to attend a training", to personal and
organizational, "The organization is making an investment so I can
attend a training. The purpose of this investment is to help me
upgrade my skills so that our organization becomes even more
competitive and productive."
Ask participants to
talk about how they might benefit from the program. Where do they
see opportunities for improvement in their own skills and/or
Discuss and obtain
agreement from your staff on their punctuality, attendance and
participation in the training program.
participants' workload during their absence so they do not return to
a mountain of pending matters. This helps participants keep their
minds focused on the course.
If sending more
than one participant, create a "buddy system" before they go. Buddy
teams can ensure that both participants get maximum value and
understanding from the training.
If the course is
more than one day long, have participants brief their managers as
the course progresses. This can take the form of a short
face-to-face meeting, a telephone call at the end of the day, or a
summary fax written and sent overnight.
identify what material was covered during the day, what new learning
occurred, and what value they see in applying this learning back at
ambiguities or uncertainties that arise. Help participants identify
examples of learning points in application on the job. Help
formulate clarifying questions for participants to bring back to the
course instructor on the following day.
If there are
interim assignments to complete, engage others who are not attending
the course in discussions and deliberations. This brings the
learning experience back into the office, building internal an
support network for during and after the training.
After the Training
Meet with course
participants to review:
What were the
most valuable learnings from this program?
What will you do
differently now at work? in which situations?
When will you
begin or try this new approach?
do you have to improve or customize the course?
Who else should
attend this particular training program?
organizational improvement based upon the participants' new
learning. Be willing to implement new suggestions on a trial basis
with participants involved in tracking and implementation.
About Source of Article
is a leading author, trainer and keynote speaker in the fields of
improving Service Quality and implementing Customer Focus. Based in
Singapore, Ron's clients include many of the Fortune 100 companies,
plus government agencies and associations around the world.
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