8 Employee Training Tactics That Actually Work
Every new job has a learning curve – and every existing job evolves over time. Consistent learning and training helps employees build their skills, and ensures that your team is growing with their roles rather than remaining stagnant. Additionally, Work Institute found that a lack of career development is the No. 1 reason employees quit their jobs. If you want to attract and retain top talent, you must create effective training opportunities for your employees to learn and develop their skills.
As with any business process, the type of strategies you use to train your employees affects how effective that training is. Although passing around a lengthy PDF or slideshow presentation may seem like the easiest method of training, there are several other training methods and strategies that can help employees become more educated while staying engaged and motivated throughout the process.
First, here are the Key Success Factors:
- Create a Talent Capacity Index and use it to validate direction and initiatives.
- Align training initiatives and programs to address gaps in the implementation of the business strategy.
- Create targeted competency development modules that nurture, foster, and grow core values.
- Find knowledge transfer and mentoring opportunities between the older and younger generations.
- Build capacity in the organization by identifying Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) and those who want to become SMEs.
- Utilize adult learning principles when creating e-learning, instructor-led or collaborative training programs.
- Build a combination of e-learning, instructor-led, flip training, reflection guidelines, and targeted stretch assignments.
- Create an in-house coaching and mentoring program,
- Regularly gather feedback about how employees feel about and rate their contributions to business success.
Companies with highly engaged employees outperform their competitors by a staggering 147%, according to Blake Morgan. In addition, 79% of employees working at companies that give an above-average customer experience are highly engaged in their work, compared to 49% of employees working at companies giving an average or below-average customer experience.
1. Give your employees a compelling reason to participate
Participating in a training session usually means that in the future, individuals must act differently in order to achieve what is expected of them. This often results in resistance to change, leading to lower productivity and personal frustration. Front-line employees often perceive “improvements” as a justification for staff positions, or believe that the organization organizes training just for the sake of it.
Overcome this motivational barrier by explaining the consequences of not adopting new methods or procedures. Create a psychological dilemma and convince users that current methods have limitations. Keep in mind that unless they are dissatisfied with current procedures, employees will not be motivated to change, thus defeating the purpose of new and better methods.
2. Make them see that training helps their career advancement
An employee who sees a clear path to professional development through training is more likely to be invested in that training. This may result in a higher salary or even a better position within the company. You’re offering a potential reward, and they’ll try to do what they have to do to get that reward. Beware of promises you can’t keep, because there’s nothing more demotivating than a broken promise.
3. Pre-training Engagement
Employees need a motivating factor if they are to undertake training. They would be reluctant to do so if they believe they would be wasting their time with irrelevant courses, or that the company does not care about their professional development. A recent global survey found that 66% of employees say that opportunities for career development are limited within their company. Taking an interest in employee career development is directly related to high employee engagement. Prior to training, commitment is essential, to ensure that its objectives are clear. This will help to stimulate future learners on future courses. Pre-commitment to training can be achieved through incentives, surveys, skills and knowledge assessments, and learning preference assessments. In this way, employers ensure that their staff are genuinely aware of the importance of training and ensure that objectives are clearly defined for both their personal development, and that of the organisation.
4. Training should be relevant to the role of the employee
To ensure high engagement rates, employers must ensure that they provide training that is appropriate to the roles of their staff. Offering a training program just for the sake of it may not result in a significant increase in productivity and efficiency. In this case, employees may not even complete their courses and may not apply what they have learned. To prevent this, employers should conduct an analysis to determine the skills that employees need. Ultimately, this will ensure the success of the business as a whole.
That is why the Procurement and Supply Chain Academy develops individual learning plans after a thorough buyer assessment and gap analysis. Based on the results of individual employee assessments or online assessments of large organizations, a gap analysis is developed for each buyer, which clearly identifies the competencies to be trained. This critical overview enables managers to determine whether employees have the skills needed to achieve the business objective and to launch a properly structured learning plan to address the gaps.
Engaged employees are clearly distinguished from their unengaged and actively disengaged counterparts by the discretionary effort they consistently bring to their role. These employees willingly do extra, work with passion, and feel a deep connection to their company. They are the drivers of innovation and will drive your business forward. Organizations that respond to engagement needs, such as flexible, relevant and timely training, can gain a competitive edge through the quality of their workforce. Assume leadership responsibilities for the development of people, individually and collectively, starting with a strategic process that can be measured succinctly. This is the best chance to lead to a powerful employee engagement initiative with a superior return on investment.
Brahim Jaouane , Digital Marketing Specialist at eXo Platform
I am a Digital Marketing specialist specialized in SEO at eXo Platform. Passionate about new technologies and Digital Marketing. With 10 years’ experience, I support companies in their digital communication strategies and implement the tools necessary for their success. My approach combines the use of different traffic acquisition levers and an optimization of the user experience to convert visitors into customers. After various digital experiences in communication agencies as well as in B2B company, I have a wide range of skills and I am able to manage the digital marketing strategy of small and medium-sized companies.
Although a simple concept in theory, the tracking of progress during training is a highly valuable and often ignored tool for optimizing productivity and keeping employees engaged in both their learning and wider career roles.
Once again, turning to tech can smoothen out the process, and incorporating a LMS (Learning Management System) grants all relevant parties a higher level of authority over learning objectives and progress. Employees have the freedom to take breaks when needed, they can oversee how much of a task they have left to complete, and most importantly, they are able to analyze results to identify strengths and areas for improvement in the future.
The increased transparency offered by an LMS also enables HR to monitor progress in a non-invasive manner, and senior staff can be kept in the loop with the benefit of knowing that their teams can receive regular contact and support. The outcomes of training programs can also be extrapolated in aid of improving future L&D strategy and rewarding top performers.
Make learning count
Incentivizing achievement by rewarding top performers is a great way of increasing employee motivation and encouraging career progression. A reward trip, gift, or a simple show of recognition in the presence of colleagues helps boost an employee’s self-worth and reinforce the feeling that they are valued by their company.
According to Kim Edwards, Talent and Leadership Development Manager at Getty Images, an engaging company is “one which puts the employee at the center of everything”. Companies must begin finding new ways of making staff feel they are central pillars of company success, and L&D offers the model for growth and recognition that makes this possible. Engage your workforce through L&D and begin reaching company goals in synchrony with the development of your employees today!
by Oli Garner
Oli Garner is a writer and digital content editor at findcourses.com, North America’s most popular search engine for professional training. He aims to create and share engaging content for individuals and organizations across a variety of industries, with an end goal of guiding them towards the best professional training option for their needs. Now located in Stockholm, Oli was born and raised in the UK and graduated from the University of Kent in 2015.