Brain Gain

5 Ways To Engage Employees With Training

If you want to grow your company, you have to expand the skill sets of your employees. There’s just one problem. Even the mention of training classes is enough to push morale into the recycle bin. Why is that?Brain-gain

The brave among your staff won’t have any problem giving you a reason. It’s boring. They might even be willing to admit to wanting additional training. So how do you remove the tedium? Here are 5 easy ways.

1. Make It Personal

Hold on a minute. Aren’t you supposed to separate your personal life from the office? It’s generally the best idea. For training, though, it’s all about making it personal. Because that’s what makes it relevant.

It’s your job as an employer and trainer to keep the learners at the center of the learning process. The most effective way to accomplish this is to help employees see how training is part of professional development. Help them see how enhancing skills advances their career.

2. Ask, Don’t Require

It’s human nature to push back against mandates. Telling employees they must train or face consequences can lead them to view it as punishment, rather than opportunity.

It might be a requirement. That’s up to your company’s policies and regulations. But you will get more buy-in by changing the approach. Substitute “You have to.” with “Would you like to?”

3. Bake It Into Your Culture

One of the main reasons most employees push back against training is because it’s disruptive. Attitudes toward training change when it’s a regular part of company activities. A continuous quest for operational efficiency requires ongoing education.

A shift in culture like this has to start at the top. Employees seek out self-improvement when they see the same actions coming from their leaders.

4. Utilize Your Own Experts

Your staff already represents an impressive amount of expertise. Now it’s time to get them to share this excellence with each other. Do you have an employee who’s a subject matter expert? Recognize this talent. It shows you value their knowledge. It’s also a way to groom new leaders.

5. Reward The Effort

Nobody should have to be bribed to participate in professional improvement. Especially when their employer is picking up the tab. Everybody, though, appreciates getting a public shout-out for their contributions. And training falls into this category.

Skip the certificates, even if you were planning to have them framed. Plan a dinner at a nice restaurant, or corral the training group and take them to sporting event. Appreciation is an amazing motivator.

There’s only one way you can be an industry leader. You have to constantly search for ways to increase the quality of what you provide. That’s why training is key for us. The only way we can continue to improve is to keep learning.