A fundamental question to ask before you choose to participate or get an employee to participate in any formal training or education course is what you and they want to get out of it. If it is the specific knowledge or skills being offered by the course then it could be useful. However, if it is a behaviour change then a course may not be the answer.
Businesses of all sizes require development. As things change in the environment around us our businesses need to move with these changes. It would be impossible to imagine any business these days that doesn’t use email or the internet, yet 25 years ago almost no business had these tools.
The survival or flourishing of most businesses comes down to the talent of its people. It is their knowledge, skills and behaviours that make the difference.
Many managers believe that if employees do not cope with the tasks, it is necessary to provide training – the coach will teach staff members everything needed, and the situation will improve. This idea is valid if the reason for not achieving the goals is that employees do not know how to finish the task. However, not every employee problem – KPI’s failures or other – can be solved by training.
Let’s look at cases when training isn’t the answer.
According to Daniel Pink, the key elements of employee motivation are mastery, autonomy and purpose. Training and education can help with the mastery part of this but autonomy and purpose are to do with the culture and values of the company.
Not using SMART indicators
If given KPI’s that are obviously achievable we can lose the motivation to do anything. We like to be stretched – to learn and grow. But on the other hand if the bar is set too high then we may feel we are being set up for failure; a result of this can be that we stop trying, and are therefore less productive. Training will not overcome this.
Setting and identifying KPIs that can be influenced by those who are required to achieve them will greatly increase the success rate of training. So, before planning training for those who are not meeting KPI’s, make sure that these indicators are addressed and realistic to achieve.
Lack of processes, regulations & rules
Often employees work “badly” simply because the organisation has not implemented clear rules and processes for performing duties.
This can mean different things: they behave too passively, too aggressively, they are not confident enough, they use the product incorrectly, etc. It is a good idea to develop a single corporate set of processes and procedures that will be guidelines for employees, and then use training to give them practice them in different situations so they learn how to apply them.
So, if you’re unsure as to if your employees will appreciate the training you request them to go through, make sure you provide it when they require it and that you have put in place the necessary steps to ensure that after the training, their path is clear to use their new skills effectively. It is important to reinforce the training they have undergone by enabling them to practice it regularly. We forget what we don’t use.
Here are the most prevalent scenarios in which you should consider investing in training to make it worthwhile:
When they require the development of a new skill
This is the most obvious scenario in which you must train your staff because, chances are, they are unaware or untrained in something within your business (new procedures, products or machinery). You need to prepare them and bring them on the journey to allow for the implementation of the change.
When team members lack fundamental skills or are unsure how to apply their knowledge
When team members lack fundamental skills or are unsure how to apply their knowledge, for example:
- When employees lack basic expertise, such as knowing how to utilise a software or a device to do their job, this is referred to as a lack of basic skills.
- When there is a deficiency in application: Employees may have the necessary skills and knowledge, but they may not know how to apply them to their jobs.
Here it is useful to invest in continuous employee learning and development training as it is a great way to close these gaps and keep the company up to date.
When You Must Adhere to New Regulatory Standards
New laws or guidelines, as well as enhanced safety rules, necessitate training for your employees in order for them to adhere to the requirements and your company to avoid lawsuits.
A training course can be highly effective in addressing these requirements. It saves time allowing employees to access learning when they need it and allowing you to deliver consistent messages.
How Construction Professionals Skillnet can help
The Construction Professionals Skillnet is a network which provides funded training and development solutions specifically for the construction industry.
Our support & training:
- Saves you money, by offering quality courses that are value for money and that your company may not be able to provide on its own
- Saves you time and resources, by sourcing and providing relevant courses and programmes, which can be implemented in the workplace immediately
- Helps you improve knowledge, skills and practice within your business and the industry as a whole
- Enables networking within and across the industry sectors through our events.
Many companies assume that if someone isn’t doing something “right,” they need more training. This expectation, along with others that instantly look to training as the go-to answer, or a simple answer to senior management.
Nevertheless, the belief that training can fix any and all team or productivity issues will more than likely result in the failure to achieve the goal, resulting in a reduction of support for employee training altogether.
Formal training and education only really address one fundamental issue: a lack of skills or expertise. A performance problem caused by a lack of knowledge or skills is simple to resolve: If you provide effective training as well as a continuous learning and assistance system, the problem can be solved.