4 Things to consider to create an effective training program
You are the ruler of your small business and your employees are your loyal subjects. But in your kingdom, which Game of Thrones character do you exemplify? Is it Jon Snow, the King of the North who is known for his kindness, honor, and selflessness? Or are you more like King Joffrey Baratheon of Westeros, the spoiled brat and torture-loving villain despised by viewers?
If it’s the latter, you’re in big trouble because your employees and customers will hate you. It won’t matter if you have a nice office, a great product, and a brilliant marketing plan. If you don’t treat your employees right, it will show. Your customers will know it and your business is bound to fail.
How is this so? This quote from Sybil F. Stershic, author of Taking Care of the People Who Matter Most: A Guide to Employee-Customer Care, provides the answer: “The way your employees feel is the way your customers will feel. If your employees don’t feel valued, neither will your customers.”
Treat employees well
Employees are the backbone of your business, so it’s in your best interest to treat them like royalty. Ruling them with an iron fist isn’t the best way to make them work harder. On the contrary, this strategy will backfire. If you disrespect employees, shout at them, nitpick over past mistakes, or make their lives miserable, you are only teaching them to hate their job and make things difficult for customers.
Studies have shown that happy employees are the key to increased productivity and satisfied customers. In “Employee Engagement; Tool of Talent Retention: Study of a Pharmaceutical Company” published in SDMIMD Journal of Management, researchers reported that customer loyalty increased when employees were engaged and happy.
How to train employees
One way to do this is by conducting regular seminars to teach employees new skills that will boost their careers. Attending relevant seminars will make your staff more successful at work and will help them deal with customers effectively.
But how do you come up with an interesting staff development program that employees will love? Here’s are some things to consider:
- Know your goal(s) – Before you organize anything, think about your business. Will the training program improve sales? What things should you focus on? If possible, try to align company needs with employees’ needs.
- Identify your audience – Who will attend the training program? Are you expecting front-line leaders, middle managers, or senior managers? What skills are they interested in? What challenges are they facing that will be addressed with training?
To get this information, talk to employees to get a glimpse of their skills and aspirations. You can only come up with a good program if you know your employees.
- Don’t go for a one-size-fits-all approach – Consider offering different types of training so employees won’t be bored and will have a ball learning. Don’t make the whole affair dull with your lengthy speech. Bear in mind that participants expect to learn something new, not listen to your endless ramblings.
To make the presentation appealing, invite different speakers who can teach employees a thing or two about the topics they’re interested in. Break the monotony with games that will familiarize your staff with the company’s goals or mission/vision. Liven up things by dividing employees into different teams and giving them assignments or projects to finish during training.
- Teach employees how to use what they’ve learned – Don’t let training go to waste. Ensure that employees know how to apply what they learned to improve productivity. After training, identify problem areas that need to be resolved or strengthened to enhance productivity and make customers happy.
Tell employees why they’re being asked to learn a new skill, what you expect from them, and how this new knowledge will benefit the company and their respective careers. If they don’t apply what they’ve learned, your staff will forget everything and nothing will come out of training.
For instance, is someone being promoted? Does your staff need help with new software or hardware? If so, your program should give employees the necessary skills and knowledge to make them more efficient. This eliminates the need to hire specialists or train outsiders since training in-house employees is cheaper.
Looking for ideas to make your employees better? Hook up with a trusted company like Capstone IT. We specialize in managed IT services and IT support. Our services are enjoyed by many small businesses in the Rochester-Buffalo and West Palm Beach-Treasure Coast areas. Call us today for more information or visit https://www.capstoneitinc.com/services/staff-development/.