Today, I wanted to focus on corporate training. Most, if not all of the training I received in my professional career has been a huge affair at big costs where all employees from around the country gather together and learn things. I have found these events to be extremely helpful in the position I was fulfilling at the time, but also lacking something. Why weren’t our lessons learned translating into our daily lives?
The actual training sessions were usually well thought out and valuable. However, I noticed a very odd trend. Every year or two when we had these training sessions, they were all extremely repetitive. Each session started with the premise that we were hearing this information for the very first time. I noticed my fellow colleagues and teammates mostly behaving like this was the very first time they were hearing this training material. I would argue it was mostly the same material and we all had the same questions we had at the last training session. Why?
When I reflect back, there was actually nothing wrong with the larger training sessions. The training modules were spot-on and the presentations were all well done. However, none of these sessions transferred the knowledge for even a 1-year period. Why?
It seems like staff left the training sessions with a strong motivation to do better and then as the weeks went by, they went back to business as usual. And again, it’s not as if the trainings weren’t compelling or satisfying. We had awesome meals, drinks, and snacks to keep folks well nourished. There was entertainment and team building exercises to foster increased teamwork and learning. Still, the staff did not remember the content and did not employ it into their daily lives. Why?
I think the “why” is actually easy. Training has to become a habit and it takes 30 days to create a habit. The one thing these companies forgot within their training sessions was reinforcing the training knowledge. See, it is a lot like going to the gym for 8 hours one day and then not going again for a year. Then, after one year, you go back to the gym for another 8 hours and are surprised that you are not in better shape. The point I am making here is going to the gym for 20 minutes every day will eventually put you in very good shape. So, if this is true of our physical training, why would it not be true of our professional training?
The fact is you can’t have a training session that lasts for a few days once a year and expect your team to grasp these details until they begin to incorporate the training into their day-to-day activities. Once this training information is fully integrated into the daily activities of your staff and it becomes a habit, then your broader team and client partners all start benefiting from the training. It becomes a habit after 30 days.
Get all training indoctrinated into the daily lives of employees.
These helpful tips will create not only better training programs, but programs that last and actually impact the organization positively.
Provide positive and negative reinforcement. Those employees that actively incorporate the training into their lives should be recognized while those employees that go back to business as usual should be held accountable.
Hold managers accountable for the growth and evolution of their staffs.
Integrate every large training with existing processes. Help your employees make the connections.
Track progress with measurable outcomes.
It is a great feeling to improve skills and perform better at our jobs. The vast majority of employees want to get better and love adding value to their companies and own careers, but without accountability you really can’t expect employees to integrate the yearly training into their daily lives. It doesn’t work that way; same for not going to the gym consistently and expecting to be in shape.
At iFrog, we are committed to integrating training into our daily lives. We know where we want to go and make certain our pirate staff is trained and able to take us in that direction. Make today the last of the training time suck with no ROI. Not evolving is not an option for the pirates of iFrog or our client partners. It should also not be an option for your companies.
As always, please don’t hesitate to hit me up 24/7 at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Be a pirate, have a great day and get FIT! #ifrogmarketing, #ifrogtechnology, #pirates, #PiratesForChange