Do You Train or Information Dump?

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An employee just started a project for a new client. He needed to familiarize himself with the standard operating procedures at the work site. The lengthy 80-page document outlines the work procedures and reporting requirements. It wasn’t an interesting read, though an important one to ensure that all the rules and checkpoints are understood. During the project, the employee neglected to file a report on the status of a discussion. The oversight led to heated debates related to costs associated with delays. Could the mishap be avoided with better training?

With the advance of technology, training has been delivered via different formats and media. Despite the increased flexibility with delivery, effective training still depends on several factors.

  1. Relevant content

For the trainer, it is straightforward to do an information dump. Going through the motion to provide extensive content doesn’t translate into effective learning. It is not productive to include more content than necessary. The trainee becomes overwhelmed with the volume of information. The above case illustrates that the employee got bogged down in the details. He couldn’t identify what was pertinent to his work and ultimately, overlooked a step that he needed the most. In determining content relevance, focus on the role of the trainee and application of the training materials. Keep information to a minimum. Less is more.

  1. Timeliness

Training conducted months ago will be forgotten. Practical application is the best way to turn training into real skills. The availability of training recordings has helped to minimize the issue with cold storage. Trainees could access recorded sessions when they are ready. For the business, it also eliminates the scheduling challenge associated with face-to-face classroom training. In considering when to provide training, evaluate the depth and breadth of the required content. They play a role in designing the timeline for delivery and the logical chunks of materials that best serve the trainee.Practical application is the best way to turn training into real skills. Click To Tweet

  1. On demand reference

The key purpose of training is to provide the knowledge necessary to perform a job. Completing the training, however, doesn’t imply eloquence on the job. Beginners performing a new task might need reminders on specific details. The more complex the task, the higher the need for a reference document. Job aids in the form of a video, infographics, or checklist are useful. As the worker has knowledge about the work already, a quick reference, available on demand, would help to expedite progress. In a similar vein, if the employee in the above case was given a job aid on what is applicable to his work, he would highlight items that he must attend to and avoid the mishap.

  1. Coaching and support

Experience and business acumen are gained over time. Coaching is needed to develop a higher level of intricate application of the technical knowledge convened through training. When you devote time to coach you team members, you would note a significant increase in performance. The support builds engagement, loyalty, and trust.

These factors affect the outcomes of training. In designing your training program, the applicability of the knowledge is most important. By combining relevant content with a delivery mechanism that is timely and supported, you expedite the learning process. An information dump is not training. You simply shift the onus to the trainee and hope for the best.

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