Time to Revise These 3 Training Lies [Fact vs Fiction]

  March 29, 2018

58% of managers reported they haven’t been given actual management training.* Yikes. Despite hiring candidates who would likely be great leaders, we aren’t taking the steps to train them on actually leading a team.

This training gap gets costly. According to the Association for Talent Development, companies that offer comprehensive training programs have 218% higher income and 24% higher profit margin per employee than companies without formalized training.** So despite the investment training requires, opting out of training means you’re literally saying, “No thanks,” to a pile of theoretical money on the table in front of you.

Let’s separate fact from fiction.

Training Lie #1: Osmosis is a viable training method.

Wrong! All too often, informal job training occurs by “osmosis.” The trainee shadows the trainer for a period of time until they “appear to understand” important tasks.

Why is this a problem?

Well, the trainer, someone already proficient at the job, feels no need to provide reverse-engineered explanations of critical systems and protocols because, after time, it becomes “obvious.” Unfortunately, what may be common knowledge to the trainer is almost always unknown territory to the trainee.

Training Lie #2: Telling is training.

Sound familiar? The “trainer” happily provides all information they THINK is important for the Trainee to know. Potential hazards? Bits of misinformation, bad habits and shortcuts get handed down from the senior employee to the new employee.

Why is this a problem?

In the absence of a formal training program, the trainer can only TELL the person “what to do.” While the intent of this approach is to “make it easy” on the newbie, it can be quite boring. Typical result? Inadequate skill transfer and corresponding poor job performance.

Training Lie #3: Turn to slideshows and old VHS tapes to keep employees engaged.

Sounds awful, doesn’t it?

Why is this a problem?

We humans learn new skills primarily through what we hear, see, and feel! Instead of death-by-Powerpoint, try some of these tips on for size…

  • Instead of text-heavy manuals, create infographics and illustrations to teach the material.
  • Provide both written and spoken overviews of job roles and responsibilities via “hands-on walkthroughs.”
  • Ask trainee for feedback as you go to ensure comprehension. Involvement is key!
  • Make sure the trainee takes notes.
  • Invest time to organize training materials into short “digestible” information packages so it doesn’t feel like you both are cramming for a big test.
  • Consider using technology to supplement learning in order make training more convenient and engaging for the trainee.
  • Make the learning experience a two-way communication process. This demonstrates that you care and want the trainee to succeed.

We Can Help

If you or someone you know would like to talk more about how to improve, reboot, or create training systems for your office, please contact us.


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