Business simply cannot continue to spend money and several days of working down time to send people away from the office for business skills training and your budget can only be justified on the basis that it adds value to the organisation. It is only reasonable that you should be able to demonstrate this.
Can you demonstrate how your training and development activity adds measurable value to the organisation?
A quality training programme designed to address a business problem represents a valuable investment that a CEO will make but many are questioning whether training programs on which return on investment will not be measured should be delivered at all. After all which other area of the business is allowed to continue without measures of its effectiveness.
Many management training companies will sell generic business training courses aimed at groups of people and delivered by a trainer who has picked that same course up off the shelf for many years. One of the greatest mistakes we can make as designers of learning experiences is to treat those people in that group as if they were the same. Providing the same solution for those with a great deal of prior knowledge, as for those who are beginners creates a situation where we over-teach the experts and under-teach the beginners. Of course management training companies want to sell you a training course, it’s a familiar solution, it’s comfortable, and it generates a huge income for them, but it turns a blind eye to the differences among learners.
This generic approach also ignores different types of learning requirements:
Some skills are cognitive; involving problem-solving, planning, decision- making, thinking, evaluating, a great deal of this type of work is carried out on a computer. Networks allow us to share our work electronically with trainers and receive immediate feedback without the need to attend a 4 day event that at best focuses on 40% of my specific development need.
The development of interpersonal skills requires a completely different strategy and the most efficient place for this may well be a classroom where you have opportunity to network, role play and practice with others, Then there are the psycho-motor skills that involve operating machinery or learning to drive, classrooms may be of little use here because hands on practice is needed and the knowledge required to remember the process can be stored and retrieved from a computer not lurking in some workbook provided on a course attended many months ago and since all knowledge is perishable if it is not available at the time the individual needs to apply it that course was a waste of time and money.