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TCFP128: MAKING THE MOST OF EMPLOYEE TRAINING

Thank you for listening to The Champion Forum Podcast with Jeff Hancher. You want your team to improve, but the only way to do that is to invest in their development. Today on The Champion Forum Podcast, we discuss the proper steps to take for creating effective training. A lot of leaders forget that one of their responsibilities is to be an educator. However, not all leaders are good teachers. Whether you consider yourself a good teacher or not, the five steps I outline in this episode will make you a better instructor and help you make a greater impact on your team.

“Tell me, and I forget. Teach me, and I remember. Involve me, and I learn.” - Benjamin Franklin

1. Tell

Make sure that your expectations are clear. If people know what you expect, they are easier to teach and more motivated to reach their goals.

Q: Describe the last time you participated in a company training. What was the purpose? Did you have a clear understanding of the purpose? Why or why not? How did that affect your experience?

2. Show

Provide your team with a clear picture of how to do the task. Physically show them what you expect. Set clear measurements regarding what you are expecting. You might be measuring the number of calls made, pages typed, or components assembled. Properly executing this step will also help you hold your team accountable after training.

3. Try

Let your team try it for themselves. This part of the process can often cause people to feel nervous because they don’t want to make a mistake. Focus on being encouraging, creating a safe space, and making it fun!

Q: What helps you feel comfortable trying new things? How can leaders create a culture where their teams feel comfortable taking risks and making mistakes?

4. Observe

Some people avoid this step because they feel like they are micromanaging their employees. However, when people are learning a new process or role, they need to get feedback on both their successes and mistakes in order to improve.

Q: Have you ever used role-play in a training? How would you rate its effectiveness? Do you think other strategies are more effective? Why or why not?

5. Praise or Redirect

When something goes well, you should identify their progress. Do not get caught up in waiting for your employee to be perfect. When they make a mistake, redirect and have them try again. Punishing a beginner will only discourage them and cause them to avoid taking healthy risks.

Application Activities:

  1. Every team has areas of opportunity. Think about where your team is consistently scoring the lowest. This is likely because of a deficiency in training. Work through the five steps of the process discussed in this podcast and put a training date on the calendar within the next 30 days. Focus on creating standards that are measurable and allowing your team to practice the training and get valuable feedback in a safe environment.

  2. One great way to show your team how to do a task is to roleplay. This strategy is especially useful when you are working in sales or another job where you work directly with the customer. However, you could also use roleplay to work through different leadership situations with new leaders. To develop a role-play situation, think through a common problem or objection your team might come up against. Consider the different ways a potential customer might respond during a sales call. Once you know the potential objections, work through how your employees can overcome them. Then, in the role-play scenario, show your team how to respond. Once you have gone through the scenario a few times, reverse the roles and let your team practice their training.

  3. The best leaders focus on developing not only their teams but also themselves. Identify an area of training that you want to improve. You may need a refresher, or you may need to find a new training, book, or class to help you grow in that area. Remember that you cannot take your team higher than you have taken yourself. If you need a suggestion, talk to your boss or mentor or look at your latest performance review.


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