Make Training Worth the Time

Imagine this.  You’ve sent your employees to a two-day training.  They return excited to apply their new skills to the workplace.  You call them into their office and they share a million ideas each.  Their excitement is contagious.  You cannot wait to see the return on your investment.

Fast forward 6 weeks.  Your trained employees are meeting expectations, but there is no noticeable difference in their work.  You just received the invoice for the training.

When employees return from training, asking them to share their ideas is a great way to show interest. However, as a manager, you must do more if you want the training to really stick.  Here are three tips to help employees transfer what they learned from the classroom to the workplace.

Provide Time for Application:  “If you don’t use it, you’ll lose it.”  This saying rings true in the workplace.  When employees return from training they likely have a backlog of work, phone calls, emails, and routine work to tend to.  They may be excited, but not have the bandwidth to apply new skills.  As a result, they fall into the same old rut.  Help employees reorganize their time, so they can apply the newly learned skill or free up time for them.  After all, you are the manager.

Encourage Ongoing Development:  Employees may have been out of the workplace for a few days and the idea of letting out of the office for another meeting seems outlandish.  Training often sparks interest in the development of specific skills or areas of knowledge. Additional training may be needed to realize the skill.  Encourage the development process with the business in mind, of course.  

Listen:  Employees may return to the workplace with ideas that seem extreme or untested.  Give them the opportunity to sell you on the idea.  They may have picked up an innovative idea at training.

Training does not stop in the classrooms.  Managers must go the extra mile to help ensure training time was not wasted.  Give your employees the tools they need upon their return to make a difference in your organization.


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Meica Hatters

About Meica Hatters

Ms. Hatters is an Career & Training Consultant. Her experience in human resources, adult education, and training informs her writing and consulting activities. Learn more @