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Training Strategies That Will Actually Make Your Employees More Productive

Estimated reading time: 2 mins

We all know that training is an essential part of having a productive workforce. But there’s a problem: most of the training out there isn’t having a measurable effect. That’s not to say that it has no effect – improving your company culture, for instance, could be boosting your profits – it’s just that pinning productivity enhancements on some kinds of training can be difficult.

The best strategy is to implement training practices that have the most profound and obvious effects. But how do you help your employees to learn more in any particular training session or course?

Get Hands-On

We grow up with the idea that the way you learn is to listen to a wise elder who stands at the front of the room. In fact, this is the model used by statist institutions, like schools and universities. But is this really the best way to learn? When you think about it, this type of learning format doesn’t really make much sense. When we’re children, our parents don’t stand at the front of the room, giving us lessons on how to use a toothbrush or climb stairs – we just figure it out ourselves.

In business training situations, the same principles apply. No matter what the particular problem is, hands-on training is often the most effective way to learn a new skill and enhance productivity. Often people are considered geniuses when they get really good at what they do. But usually, it just comes down to practice. Doing something over and over again tends to make people really good at it, no matter what it happens to be.

Use E-Learning And Online Training

E-learning sound like it could be just like regular learning, but online. But like so many digital tools, there’s more to it than that. Being in an e-learning class is often a very different experience to being in a regular class because of the fact that so much of the experience is based on data collection. E-learning providers collect practically every piece of information they can about your employees, from their scores on mini-quizzes to the rate at which they consume the material. In sophisticated platforms, these data are then fed back into the system in real time to customise the experience to their needs. If for instance, they’re struggling to understand a particular topic, the system will feed them easier questions. If, however, some are racing ahead of their classmates, they may get more challenging material.

Focus Training In Bursts

How long does the average person concentrate? 45 minutes? 10 minutes? 10 seconds? Researchers have found that the average person can only really concentrate on a particular topic for around 8 to 12 minutes: not much when you think about it.

Thus, if you put your employees in a room and get them to listen to a lecture for 3 hours, practically all of them will have switched off by the end of it. It’s much better, therefore, to break training up into smaller chunks across a number of days. This is a much more efficient use of your time, and theirs.

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About the author /


Simon is a creative and passionate business leader dedicated to having fun in the pursuit of high performance and personal development. He is co-founder of Applied Change, a Business Change consultancy based in the UK. Simon is also an Ambassador for Gloucestershire business. Simon is an Associate Member of the Chartered Institute of Professional Development.

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