Training - How to Make it Pay

by Stephen Newton

What should ‘it’ be?

The answers to the following twelve questions will help to define what training or other development activity is likely to be most effective and the probability of its success:

  1. Is the trainee capable of benefiting?
  2. Do they want to be trained?
  3. Are they willing and able to put in the necessary work?
  4. If the training activity requires time away from home (or homework outside normal hours), will this be problematic, due to family or other commitments? Will out of hours work be paid?
  5. Do they have the necessary intellectual capacity?
  6. Do they have the necessary basic skills at an appropriate level to benefit from this training?
  7. Should the training activity be phased over time to allow practice? (For example, it is hard to move directly from driving a car to HGV1 without experience on large vans and so on.)
  8. How will you (and the trainee) measure success? (This requires SMART goals –Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and within a specified Time frame.)

  1. What are the specific benefits of the training (such as greater productivity or reduced error rates) that you seek to gain and how will you make sure the benefits are achieved?
  2. How will you (and the trainee) know when to pull the plug if something goes wrong?
  3. Can the trainee be confident that pulling the plug will not backfire on them? (In other words, is there any risk involved in starting the activity? If not, or if so, discuss this with them.)
  4. What would be the impact, if any, on the employee of failure? Discuss this with them...