Empower Your Employees With Learning… Whatever Your Budget

As an entrepreneur, you know that your unique combination of passion, talent, skills, training, experience and business acumen are integral to the success of your enterprise. Nonetheless, you also understand that you could not have achieved the measure of success you’ve gained in your enterprise alone. Your great ideas light the way, but the hard work, dedication, passion and ingenuity of your staff also plays a huge role in your business success. As such, your employees deserve every but of support, training, development and guidance you can provide them.

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The trouble is that this invariably comes at a monetary cost to your business. Smaller and newer businesses which are still finding their way and doing their best to keep their heads above water financially are understandably full of trepidation when it comes to spending money at the expense of their all-important profit margins. Fail to invest in your employees, however, and the results could be disastrous.

What happens when you fail to develop your employees

While it’s understandable that new entrepreneurs might be keen to keep a close eye on the purse strings, this may be at the expense of your business. Underdeveloped employees will at best lose motivation, resulting in a loss of productivity or dip in quality of service for your customers. At worst, they may quit your organization altogether, even running into the open arms of your competitors, thereby giving them an edge over you. Even if this doesn’t happen, you will still have to endure the expense and dip in productivity while you recruit and train their replacement.

Let’s take a look at just a few of the ways in which you can give your employees the gift of professional development…

In-house training

If you want to ensure that your employees do things your way, making sure that your customers get such a continuity in service that it’s like you’re dealing with each and every customer yourself. While in-house training can be cost-effective and ensure brand continuity, every now and then an outside perspective is appreciated, which brings us to…

External training providers

The benefit of using external training providers is that no matter how knowledgeable you may be, even the best of us has blind spots in our knowledge. External training providers can bring a fresh outside perspective to your business while also having training and motivational techniques that you may never even have considered. While again this may result in additional expense, it may well be to the benefit of your business.

Online learning or community college

If you worry about a productivity dip while your employees are developed on company time, you may benefit from funding, or part-funding their own learning through community college or online learning. This puts the onus on the employee and gives them the gift of academic or vocational qualifications that can empower them throughout their career. With a plethora of online courses out there from an online rn to bsn program to just about any academic degree you can imagine, online learning is an extremely powerful tool that shows your employees how much you value them.

The only downside is that it may be tricky incorporating their learning into their operational activities in a cohesive way.

An open door

Finally, sometimes the best and easiest form of development comes in the form of an open door. By allowing your employees an opportunity to talk to you and taking the time to explain processes and procedures in a little more detail you can ensure operational excellence while establishing yourself as the kind of boss they can always rely on.

The Biggest Benefits of Ongoing Staff Training for Your Business

StrategyDriven Talent Management Article
As a business owner, you will know how important your staff is to help you grow your business and create good relationships with your customers. However, some companies can be slow to implement the right training that can develop and grow their employees while also keeping their business secure. If you can keep your staff trained in the latest procedures and techniques, then you can get the most from them and also add new opportunities to your business.

Keep Up with Industry Changes

The world of business and industry is constantly changing, and you might not be able to keep up with all of these changes on your own. That is why it’s important that you learn to delegate certain tasks to your staff so that they can learn these changes. Although you need to know what changes are being implemented, your workers are the ones that will be dealing with them on a daily basis. Encourage your employees to take training courses on these new changes, especially those that are required by law, so you can stay compliant and avoid falling behind your competitors. You can allocate certain areas such as security to specific members of your staff so that they can specialize. This will help them to focus, and it will also make your business more efficient.

Maintaining Security

One of the most important reasons for keeping your staff up to date with training is for the security of your business. There are always new viruses and hacking techniques that can threaten the security of your company’s data. By keeping your staff up to date, you can try to avoid these threats. For example, if you are implementing a virtual data room, then you need to ensure that your staff is using the right security measures to keep the data safe. You will probably only want a select few to have access to this data to limit the potential threat. You should also be ensuring that your workers are using the correct techniques when setting up passwords and keeping them safe from others in the office.

Eliminating Gaps in Skills and Customer Service

There are some parts of your business that require specific training and knowledge of working practices to make it efficient and effective. One such area is customer service, which can be a complicated and sensitive subject that can make the difference between a good company and a bad one. There is more to dealing with customers than just helping them with their queries; you also need staff that can cope with complaints and create solutions to tricky situations. Training can help to give your customer service workers the skills they need to do their jobs effectively and give them confidence in their decisions.

It is important to recognize gaps in your employee’s training and to implement courses to fix those gaps. By doing so, you will not only help your employees grow, but you will also make your company more efficient.

5 Big Reasons Staff Training Should Involve E-Learning

Every business leader and owner knows that training is critically important to the maintenance of a highly effective staff. What most managers don’t know is that staff training needs to incorporate a diverse types of training methods. Among these, e-learning is essential to both the staff and the company. Never heard of e-learning? Here are five reasons why you might want to keep your ear to the ground in the future.

1. 24/7

When you put materials online, they are accessible at any time of the day or night. A training course is rigid in the sense that you can only learn at specific points, chiefly when you are in the training course. But, with e-learning, an employee can decide to access the materials whenever they fancy. The result is that anyone within the business can better themselves in their own time and at their own pace. When they have the drive, they also have the tools at their disposal.

2. Cost Effective

The fact that the training course is online means the business doesn’t need to spend money on hosting the training session. That is not one-hundred percent true, however, as you will need to go to a training course to understand how to build e-learning programs. Oh, the irony! But, once you have a couple of Adobe Captivate training courses under your belt, there is no requirement to spend more. Businesses are always looking for ways to cut costs, and e-learning is probably one of the most effective cost cutting procedures.

5 Big Reasons Staff Training Should Involve E-Learning

3. A Greener Business

Does your company do its bit for the environment? It should because most authorities are less strict on businesses that are helping the planet. Plus, going ‘green’ saves you a lot of money too. E-learning makes your business greener because it is online. That means you use and waste less paper as there is no need for printouts or sheets. Also, e-learning cuts down on your carbon footprint. As everything is virtual, there is no need to commute to training sessions and burn fossil fuels in the process.

4. Improves Staff Retention

Staff can learn more from e-learning because of gamification. Gamification makes the process much more engaging as it adds competition with others, point scoring and rules. The staff has to use their brains more as a result as it is more challenging and interactive than sitting in a room listening to someone talk. When staff engagement and retention start to improve, your workforce will also get better at their jobs.

5. Further Reach

No matter where you or your staff is at any given moment, you are always able to participate in mobile learning if the information is online. So, instead of just affecting the people in the room, e-learning can affect the whole company. Everyone can get together and listen to the knowledge that will make them and the company better.

From your point of view, that is essential if you want to succeed and expand.

Engage your employees in the training process

Companies invest in employee training and talent development programs for one reason: to get results. The problem is that too often they see training as an “event” rather than a process, and they earn a miserable return on investment.

See if this rings true. You hire an outside consultant to conduct a two-day training session. Your expert trainer delivers a ton of value. Trainees give the session high marks. But a few weeks later you realize your people aren’t deploying the skills they were taught. You’re frustrated. Where are the results? Where is your return on investment?

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About the Author

Steve MeyerStephen Meyer is CEO of the Rapid Learning Institute, which provides bite-size e-learning to companies, nonprofits, educational institutions and government. Prior to starting the Rapid Learning Institute and its parent company Business 21 Publishing in 2002, Meyer was the Director of Publishing at The Hay Group, a leading HR, benefits and compensation consulting firm. At RLI he developed the model for six- to 10-minute “Quick Take” rapid learning modules. Meyer received his MBA from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

Talent Management Best Practice 1 – Ensure Employability

Decades ago, an individual typically had the opportunity to work for their entire career within one company. Times have changed. Process automation and streamlining as a form of cost reduction has driven corporate rightsizing; eliminating the lifelong job security of times past and heightening employment risk. Combined with evolving employee tastes and a need to increase productivity, talent development takes on new importance.

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Additional Information

StrategyDriven recommends a number of programs and resources to help further develop executives, managers, and employees. These are included in our:

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