7 Reasons Why Training Doesn't Produce the Desired Results and What You Can Do To
Seven Reasons Why Training Doesn't Produce the Desired Results and What You Can Do To Improve Your Results
Overview Abraham Maslow said, "If the only tool you have is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail." As managers, leaders and change agents, we want to improve our organizational performance. Often training is seen as an important tool in this pursuit. Training is a fabulous tool! It can provide awareness, knowledge, skills and maybe even a chance to practice. However, all of our change efforts aren't nails, so training isn't our only tool. This special report identifies seven common reasons why training doesn't meet it's goals - even when it is the right tool - and more importantly - gives you some action steps to avoid these pitfalls.
The "Who's Accountable?" Game People rarely are held accountable for using what they learned in a course or workshop when they get back to the workplace. So some people recognize going to training as a game. That's why training is seldom seen (by anyone in the organization) as what it could and should be - a strategic part of the business, with responsibility for performance enhancement. Regardless of how training is viewed, if people aren't held accountable, how likely is it that real performance change will occur? All of the actions below will make accountability clear.
What You Can Do
? Give people a clear message before participating in training what the expectations of them will be when they return. ? Plan some time with the participant both before and after the training session. ? Let participants know before they attend that an action plan is expected as a result of the training session. (Then be interested in the outcome.) ? Ask participants how you can help them reach their new performance goals.
The Cafeteria Cause - "Course du Jour" Often training has no connection to the strategic objectives of the organization. Whether true or not, the prevalent perception in the organization is that there is no rhyme or reason to the latest training course. This cause is called "Course du Jour" because often organizations offer new training just like some people try new diets. New business books (and accompanying "hot" new training topics) are published with the frequency of new diet plans - and the similarities continue! With the fad popular diets, people hear about the new approach, buy the book, get excited, try the diet, and soon leave it - usually before they received any real benefit. The same thing happens in an organization. The new training topic, approach, idea or craze is tried and dropped before results can occur.. There's usually nothing wrong with the training introduced, but usually it isn't supported in the organization - or given the time to work. In these instances, the company is wasting time and money and confusing the majority of the employees. Maybe most costly however is the risk of fostering cynicism and reducing the credibility of leadership.
What You Can Do
? Make training decisions based on strategic direction and real performance gaps. Once those training priorities have been set, stick to them. ? Make a commitment to get a return on that training investment. ? Resolve to give the training time and support to work. ? Determine clear performance outcomes for the effort up front. ? When a new "hot topic" training course is proposed, ask, "How does this fit with what we've been doing? Is this just our next diet?" ? Use real work in the training when possible.
The Piling on the Work Paradigm Many times managers and leaders see training as an expensive waste of time. When they attend classes, they continually think about all the work that is piling up "back in the office". Their employees see this attitude through their leader's actions. This thinking grows because leaders don't explain the reasons for the course and don't help people deal with the workload while they are gone. Since you can't make people learn, these situations can be disastrous in the training session itself. People may resent having to be in the training because they don't understand why they're there, and they know they'll have to work harder when they get back to the job to catch up. In this situation the participants may leave more cynical than when they arrived, with few if any new skills to counteract that possible effect.
What You Can Do
? Do everything possible to make sure all of management is on-board with the training and its purpose. ? Make a commitment to get a return on that training investment. ? Resolve to give the training time and support to work. ? Determine clear performance outcomes for the effort up front. ? Set up a plan to handle the work while the participant is learning. This action speaks volumes about the importance of the training. It will also improve their ability to focus on the session (e.g. "My critical work is being handled", and " Whew, I'm sure glad that most of my mail will have been handled when I get back!")
The January Third Application Assignment Well designed training with motivated learners will result in people leaving training with some clear ideas about how they plan to apply what they've learned back on the job. But well intentioned as those plans might be, they may be no more effective than most New Year's Resolutions. Old habits are hard to break! Habits are especially hard to break when there is no support for the new skills and behaviors back in the workplace.
What You Can Do
? Give people a clear message before participating in training what the expectations of them will be when they return. ? Plan some time with the participant both before and after the training session. ? Let them know before they attend, that an action plan is expected as a result of the training session. (Then be interested in the outcome.) ? Ask them how you can help them reach their new performance goals. All of these actions will make accountability clear. ? Give an entire work group training in new information and skills at the same time. (Whenever possible and appropriate.) ? Use real work in the training when possible.
The Sleepwear Syndrome - "One-Size-Fits-All" Often times a T-shirt or sleepwear is designed to be "one size-fits-all" and serves its purpose. Training isn't sleepwear and probably won't be effective that way. Look at it this way: though all the teen-age kids might wear one size of sweatshirt to school, would people wear the same size suit or skirt to work? If they did, would they look as good or perform well? In other words, one-size-fits-all garments aren't all that versatile for different situations. The basic goal of clothing - to cover our body and provide warmth - would be achieved, but many other reasons why we wear clothing would not be satisfied. The same is true for training in the workplace. Too often, generic, across-the-board training is administered. The basic premise with this syndrome is that "We'll give it to everyone - to be fair - maybe everyone doesn't need this information or lack the skills, but at least we will make sure we don't leave anyone out." In reality often management doesn't really know who needs the new skills and knowledge.
What You Can Do
? Base training and participation decisions on skills needed to be effective in the workplace.
The Lone Ranger Situation Often people are sent to training as a perk, a reward, or as a way to get them in a new surrounding for awhile. In most cases, people in a team or work group may never all see the same training, except for the "Course du Jour" or "One-Size-Fits-All" variety. Some times people need specific skills to perform a specific part of their work. Often though, the "perk" training workshops are for skills many people in the group could use (or maybe they'll all be sent over-time; after all, everyone can't be gone at once.) The result? People come back to work in a vacuum. Not only are they not accountable (Reason Number One above), but no one they work with has the same new skills and knowledge that they do. Without support, as a Lone Ranger, the new ideas they bring back may not get implemented due to peer resistance or ignorance.
What You Can Do
? Give an entire work group training in new information and skills at the same time. (Whenever possible and appropriate.) ? Build training that is linked to the problems at work as well. ? Use real work in the training when possible.
The "Name That Tune" Game This problem arises when, in the name of expediency or efficiency, training time is compacted. Trainers are asked to "Name That Tune" (or complete the training) in shorter and shorter time blocks. This show starts with "The Management Team only needs an overview", and ends with training being designed to fit a time slot, as opposed to being designed to build specific skills. The typical result of the "Name That Tune - shorten the session for my people Game", is training that is little more that exposure to a topic area - not training which can transfer real skills, with real practice time in the classroom.
What You Can Do
? Give the training staff some muscle - let them be strong advocates for training that is skill based, and not just meant to fill the ever-shortening time slot. ? Determine clear performance outcomes for the effort up front.
Final Thoughts Training can be expensive, often time consuming, and disappointing - both to the individuals and to the organization. Training and learning is also vitally important to the success of organizations. These Seven Reasons are often why training is so disappointing and time consuming. Taking the actions listed will help reduce the cost, lower the frustration and disappointment and drastically increase the effectiveness of the training in your organization.
As bishops and cardinals gather in Rome, one man tells of his years-long attempt to see his alleged abuser put on trial
In early February, Arturo Borrelli handcuffed himself to a pole in front of the Vatican in a desperate plea to the Catholic church to take his allegations of sexual abuse by a priest seriously.
Ten years have passed since Borrelli, 43, opened up about the systematic assaults, including rape, that he says he endured as a child from his religion teacher, who was also a priest at a parish in the Naples district of Ponticelli.
Special forces said to be preparing to storm Baghuz to flush out last Islamic State diehards
They left Baghuz in a convoy of trucks, slowly snaking across the desert as thin trails of black smoke from mortar strikes drifted into the sky behind them.
The Islamic State fighters dangled their legs off the backs of vehicles normally used for transporting sheep. Brightly coloured keffiyehs wrapped around their faces, they stared at Kurdish troops as they passed without saying a word.
Swede, 16, says EU cannot just âwait for us to grow up and become the ones in chargeâ
The EU should double its climate change reduction targets to do its fair share in keeping the planet below a dangerous level of global warming, the Swedish activist Greta Thunberg has told political and business leaders in Brussels.
Flanked by students from the Belgian and German school strike movements, the Swedish teenager said it was not enough to hope that young people were going to save the world.
Police warn death toll may rise in âhighly combustableâ blaze in old part of Bangladesh capital
At least 80 people have died after a massive fire engulfed apartment buildings that also housed chemical warehouses in the old city of Bangladeshâs capital Dhaka.
Dozens of people were trapped in the buildings, unable to escape onto narrow streets clogged with traffic, as the highly-combustible stores of chemicals, body sprays and plastic granules erupted in flames. About 50 people were injured, some critically burned.
Euro MPs are confirming that the mood in Brussels is anything but positive with some choice words today.
The prominent Greek MEP, Stelios Koulouglou, told the Guardian:
Everyone in the [EU] negotiating team is completely fed up with May. They feel she doesnât have a clear plan, she changes constantly and instead of being serious, is playing cheap political games.
The response when the chief EU negotiator, Michel Barnier, was asked about the prospect of an extension to Article 50, sounds somewhat exasperated:
We donât need more time, we need decisions from the British parliament. If this question was raised, the first reaction of the heads of state - whose unanimous approval is required - would be to say âWhat for? How much time?â
Empire actor hands himself in after being charged with lying to police when saying he was victim of racist attack
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Now, Wilson-Raybould is out of her job and Trudeau has found himself on the defensive, fending off accusations that members of the Prime Ministerâs Office (PMO) â a powerful body staffed with hand-picked confidants â put pressure on Wilson-Raybould to not pursue criminal charges against a large Canadian engineering firm. The scandal has cast a shadow over Trudeauâs domestic image of commitment to transparent government, potentially harming his electoral prospects.
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The recent court decision against the neighbours of Tate Modern in London belies a much wider problem â everyone is constantly being watched
Alexander McFadyen says that he and his family were âmore or less constantly watchedâ while they were at home. They had to be âproperly dressedâ at all times, and even then they were often photographed or filmed, and sometimes spied on with binoculars. McFadyen set out to measure the problem. While working at the dining table, he counted 84 people taking photographs in 90 minutes. This is the reality of living in a glass-walled flat in Block C of Neo Bankside, just 34 metres from the viewing gallery at Tate Modern, which receives up to 600,000 visitors a year.
A neighbour, Claire Fearn, said being watched like that made her âsick to her stomachâ. People waved and made obscene gestures at her and her family. Her husband, Giles Fearn, found pictures of their home posted online by strangers. Many of the images are still on Twitter, often with amused remarks about the misfortune of their wealthy owners. (The flats are worth an average of ÂŁ4.35m each.) Another neighbour, Lindsay Urquhart, visited the viewing gallery and heard someone remark that she and the other residents of Block C deserved to lose their privacy because they were ârich bastardsâ.
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From the main street, the Euljiro neighbourhood doesnât look like much: some shabby retail stores, cold-noodle restaurants, a Starbucks.
Enter one of the small alleys, however, and youâll find yourself in a kind of manufacturing anthill: thousands upon thousands of shops, each crammed to the rafters with bolts, circuit boards, iron castings, gauges, wires, lights, switches, tools and innumerable tiny objects that defy description.
Hans Leo Maes captures the bridges and stairways that link up the hilly, population-dense city
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âThe extreme population density in Hong Kong means [structures] are stacked and linked by stairs, often external and very visible,â Maes says.
The obsession with fasting overlaps with a trend for what is often termed âbiohackingâ â the idea that your body is a system that can be quantified and optimized
Eating is so last season; these days all the cool kids fast. Fasting diets have rocketed in popularity over the last few years, garnering a number of high-profile fans. Like Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, for example, who tweeted last month that heâd âbeen playing with fasting for some time.â Dorsey explained that he does âa 22 hour fast daily (dinner only), and recently did a 3 day water fast.â The billionaire added that the biggest thing he had noticed after depriving himself of food was âhow much time slows down. The day feels so much longer when not broken up by breakfast/lunch/dinner. Any one (sic) else have this experience?â
I have! Iâve had lots of experience with the various side effects of fasting because I did it a ton as a teenager: it was called âanorexia.â And it wasnât fun. It wrecked my health and took me years to recover.
Incident in Small Heath area is cityâs second fatal stabbing of a teenager in a week
A murder investigation has been launched after a schoolboy was killed in Birmingham â the second 16-year-old to be fatally stabbed in the city in a week.
The teenager was discovered with fatal injuries on Herbert Road in the Small Heath area of the city at about 8pm on Wednesday. A 15-year-old boy was treated for minor injuries by paramedics after he was assaulted.
Chiwetel Ejiofor directs and stars in the inspiring real-life story of a teenager who brings electricity to his village in Malawi
Chiwetel Ejiofor has made his debut as writer-director, and the result is exhilarating and rather inspiring â a story of success against the odds, of ingenuity and resourcefulness, of a father and son painfully coming to terms with each other. Ejiofor brings a real sensitivity and empathy to this material, as well as some bold, fluent storytelling.
He has adapted a 2013 memoir by the Malawi engineer William Kamkwamba, which told the remarkable story of how as a teenager he provided electricity for his village by designing and building a wind turbine, hooked up to a simple bike-type dynamo. Ejiofor has exercised a little creative licence here and upped the narrative stakes, by making this turbine vital for pumping otherwise inaccessible well water for the drought-stricken villageâs crops, and in doing so battling against his fatherâs angry realisation that his kid has done what he could not. But Ejioforâs creative interventions are entirely justified. They speak to the larger ideas â the pain and confrontation involved in trying something radically new.
Democrats are being urged to sign a resolution which would halt Trumpâs national emergency declaration.
With the backing of Houser speaker Nancy Pelosi, Rep Joaquin Castro started circulating a letter round House members yesterday, seeking co-sponsors to his one-page resolution. Democrats have until 3pm today to sign, and it is likely to be introduced on Friday.
All Members take an oath of office to support and defend the Constitution.
Darwin Zerpa is among those who have fled to Peru to get the antiretrovirals he needs. Now he counsels others with the virus
By day it is one of Limaâs grandest squares. By night the Plaza San MartĂn becomes a magnet for nightclubbers and bag-snatchers, as well as a haunt for male sex workers and their clients.
It is here just before midnight that 29-year-old Darwin Zerpa and other volunteers set up shop. Pulling up in an out-of-service ambulance and folding out a table on the pavement, they mark out a spot where passersby can get HIV finger-prick test results in less than 10 minutes.
Campaigners say resurgence of deadly virus threatens despite huge successes of vaccination drive
The unmonitored movement of people across the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan threatens efforts to eradicate polio from the two countries, as the yearâsfirst cases of the virus are recorded in the volatile region.
The Global Polio Eradication Initiative said people travelling through unchecked crossings is believed to be one of the main causes of the spread of the disease in the area.
The state, which styles itself as the Democratic-led âresistanceâ, has launched 46 lawsuits against the Trump administration
The Trump administrationâs plans to pull millions in federal funding from Californiaâs high-speed rail project is just the latest antagonism between the president and the state that stands on the opposite end of his partyâs ideological spectrum.
Governor Gavin Newsom called the move âpolitical retributionâ for the stateâs lawsuit against Donald Trumpâs declaration of a national emergency, but California and Trump have been at it since before he was even elected president.
Though Trump himself suggested there is no real emergency, courts are unlikely to second-guess a presidentâs broad leeway
Many legal analysts who watched Donald Trump declare a national emergency over immigration on Friday thought the president had weak legal grounds for doing so. In particular, many thought Trump hurt his own case by admitting, right there in the White House Rose Garden: âI didnât need to do this, but Iâd rather do it much faster.â
âThis quote should be the first sentence of the first paragraph of every complaint filed this afternoon,â tweeted George Conway, a top Washington lawyer and the husband of Trump aide Kellyanne Conway.
Attempt to hustle Japan into a trade deal highlights the problems facing âglobal Britainâ
It takes a lot to anger the unfailingly polite, anglophile Japanese. But Liam Fox, the international trade secretary, and Jeremy Hunt, the foreign secretary, appear to have managed it with their ill-judged attempt to hustle Tokyo into a quick-fire Brexit trade deal.
The diplomatic fumble has highlighted rapidly escalating difficulties facing âglobal Britainâ â the governmentâs nebulous vision for life after the EU â in forging new business and trade relationships around the world without an agreed post-Brexit strategy.
I had to gain the confidence that always seemed to come naturally to my partner to release my inner handywoman
Last year my partner and I moved into a new house. The whole exercise was exhilarating â finally, a place we owned â but it also unearthed in me a desperation, a deep frustration. For a long time Iâve wanted to be someone who fixes things, builds things, someone who is capable in practical day-to-day tasks. I own tools, I have ideas and I tinker with my surroundings, but Iâve never felt completely at ease in the tasks that various men in my life seem to take on with no backward glance.
In our just-built house there were so many jobs to do with drills, hammers, caulking guns. My drive to learn by doing was offset by disorientation and self-doubt. I wanted to begin improving our house, but I didnât know what sort of screws I needed for the curtain rod brackets, or whether I could just drill straight into the plasterboard. My partner, a man, didnât have much more experience in these things than I did, but approached the situation with a confidence and bluster that only confused me more.
Visitors to Dartmoor zoo are being offered the opportunity to take part in its âhuman v beastâ challenge, with groups of people playing tug-of-war against a lion as it tries to wrestle meat attached to a rope.
The controversial attraction, which costs ÂŁ15 per person, has sparked a backlash with more than 2,000 people signing a petition to stop the practice. The petitionâs author, Sue Dally, described it as, âcruel and shows a total lack of respect for these beautiful majestic wild animalsâ
Barack Obama offered some advice on self-confidence to young men at an event hosted by his foundation in Oakland, California, on Tuesday.
When asked by a member of the audience about his definition of being a man, and how it relates to the LGBT+ community, the former US president said being a man was âfirst and foremost being a good humanâ before going on to say that âif you are very confident about your sexuality, you donât have to have eight women around you twerkingâ
Tens of thousands of people have taken to the streets across France in protest against an increase in the number of antisemitic attacks in the country. Recent incidents have included a Jewish cemetery being desecrated with swastikas and the philosopher Alain Finkielkraut being subjected to a torrent of hate speech on the fringe of a gilets jaunes (yellow vests) protest in Paris
Bernie Sanders, the independent senator from Vermont who ran against Hillary Clinton for the 2016 Democratic nomination, has announced his run for the presidency in 2020. Sanders, 77, running as a Democrat, will be up against a more crowded and diverse field this time round
Donald Trump has used a speech in Miami, Florida, to issue a direct appeal to members of the Venezuelan military to back opposition leader Juan GuaidĂł. The influential Venezuelan military has so far remained largely loyal to current president, NicolĂĄs Maduro. The US president told the crowd: 'We seek a peaceful transition of power, but all options are open'
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