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Sunday, September 09, 2007

Train the Trainable

Those who are responsible for training often face an uphill climb when justifying training investments. This stems from the bad experience corporate executives had with non-return of training investment. I mean who hasn't seen employees attend training and have absolutely nothing to show for it afterwards? If you ask me, I've seen too many.

there are a number of reasons why training fail, there is bad design, bad delivery, bad timing and the one I'd like to talk about today... Wrong trainee.

In one of my " train the trainers" class a participant introduced herself and shared her expectation. She said "I wish to improve my self confidence and start liking training. You see I hate it. I am forced to conduct it because its part of my JD. If I have a choice, I'd like to go back to doing anything but training." compare this with one participant who said "I want to learn how to become a better trainer. You see I've always wanted to be a good trainer. I'm very interested in helping people improve their performance and achieve their full potential." From their introductions alone, I can already guess who is going to do well.

Good supervisors become better when they attend training. Good team leaders build great teams when they attend teambuilding workshops. A mediocre leader can be better if he has a genuine interest in leadership, recognizes what he needs to learn and embarks on a personal journey to improve his leadership skills. I wouldn't bet on the one who is totally uninterested. After a great training, this guy will say great training! And that's about it.

The point I'm trying to raise here is an old one. Assessing aptitudes and potentials should precede placement, promotion and training. There are a number of tools out there that you can use. Sure, a lot of them are expensive but they are worth it. And yes, you can be creative in your means of determining these but please do. Just imagine the amount of lost investment in time, money and effort of having the wrong person for the job.

When you have the right person for the job, a good training will really go a long way. In fact I've seen people shine in their jobs despite minimal organizational support.

Now, I wonder what I’m trainable at…

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