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Training them right

Why it is important to run your training programme like a business

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    According to a Gallup poll, millennials care deeply about their development when looking for jobs and in their current roles. An impressive 87% of millennials rate “professional or career growth and development opportunities” as important to them in a job -- far more than the 69% of non-millennials who say the same. 

    In another recent national survey of over 400 employees spanning three generations (baby boomers, generation X, and millennials), 70% of the respondents indicated that job-related training and development opportunities influenced their decision to stay at their job. This leads us directly to designing/structuring the correct training programme for these employees.

    Now, what exactly is a correct training programme? “Today, organisations across industries are keen on employing and grooming leaders at all levels. Although role definitions are important, in the present business scenario it is important to empower and encourage employees to explore roles that lie beyond their job description - in line with the strategic direction and vision of the organisation. Development interventions should be designed to achieve this objective, moving beyond traditional training programmes. Employees need to own the responsibility to remain updated and relevant; simultaneously organisations need to facilitate and support this process through training and development,” says Gopinath Govindan, director – human resources, CLP India.

    Take an internal poll – Your major critics are your employees, and that too, with the correct base. They know everything that is going on internally and also what kind of changes are required. Besides appreciating your interest in them and providing valuable feedback, they will also be receptive towards the training that is being designed for them. 

    Next will be your external stakeholders, your clients. Review the customer feedback received through various online surveys. This shall give you a clarity on what is working, what is not and what your clients’ preferences and requirements are. You can then develop a training programme based on both these polls, turn the feedback into data and data into an action and action into results with revenue. 

    A study by Harvard Business School found an increase in online rating of just one star can be tied to a 9% increase in overall revenue.

    Run your training programme like a business. Define your objective, include a SWOT analysis, define a budget with an understanding of the return on investment (RoI), and market the programme as if it is for your clients. Conduct pilot classes initially; this will help you identify the gaps and allow you to refine it to customise it better, as per your employees’ expectation and the organisation’s needs and long-term goals.

    Sukhdeep Aurora, chief people officer – Anarock Property Consultants, says, “Training programmes need to be accurately calibrated at several levels. To begin with, they need to have the right content and this does not necessarily mean that the most relevant content is to be only business-oriented. Employees also hope to gain knowledge about aspects such as more effective life management, language skills, personal finances, etc.”

    With business-specific training, the content needs to be aligned with the existing experience levels and aimed at creating a smooth transition to the next level of proficiency, adds Aurora. Also, the training module content should be delivered in the most engaging manner possible, not only to eliminate boredom but also to enhance knowledge retention. “Apart from the mandatory training, employees must be given a fairly wide array of training modules to choose from basis their own preferences and interests.”

    Weave training programme into your company’s culture. As an incentive, every time an employee performs well after a training programme, acknowledge him/her. This will increase employee engagement, resulting in productivity which will lead to the organisation’s growth.

    According to the Association for Talent Development, firms that offer comprehensive training programmes have 218% higher income per employee than those without formalised training. But it doesn’t stop there. These companies also enjoy a 24% higher profit margin than those who spend less on training. 

    GURU COOL

    • Take an internal poll. Your employees know everything that is going on internally and also what kind of changes are required 
       
    • Review the customer feedback received via online surveys to know what is working, what is not and what your clients’ preferences and requirements are
       
    • You can then develop a training programme based on both these polls, turn the feedback into data and data into an action and action into results with revenue

    218% – Higher income per employee companies that offer comprehensive training programmes have than those without formalised training 

    24% – Higher profit margin these companies enjoy than those who spend less on training

    The writer assistant general manager - human resources, SILA

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