Training Truths: Challenges and Coaching to Leverage Learning

You need to sustain your market share, increase profits, work smarter and increase corporate social responsibility, as well as be emotionally intelligent. You need employees with the right skills, knowledge and behaviors to communicate effectively with clients, global outlooks, managers who can coach their teams to empower them and leaders with cross-cultural experience.

What’s the solution?

You provide training that will ensure return on investment and sustained impact.

Correct?

Training, especially skills training, is a huge industry. Organizations and individuals spend billions each year ‘helping’ their employees develop professionally.

So why does training sometimes fail?

One answer is that training is often structured or run poorly, not addressing different learning styles. It can also be the case that the trainees have been ‘put’ on the wrong course, they don’t see the benefits or they don’t want to change and develop.

Good trainers may spend three days or more preparing one day of training, ensuring the right level of content, excellent materials, clear progression routes, ideal locations and facilities, assessment tools pre and post course…

And yet confidence and trust in a trainer who provides the right ‘space’ for learning are also needed. But how can the learning that has been gained in a safe environment be transferred into the workplace effectively?

What is often missing is the challenge. A safe, organized environment seen as conducive to learning through experiences, without the frenetic pace of daily demands, may not assist in implementing new learning as trainees often receive feedback, support and guidance. In contrast, colleagues may not be open to change, have time to plan action or understand the need for change, especially when short-term results are the focus. This can cause trainees to forget what they learnt, returning to their habits and comfort zone.

It is therefore essential for trainers to coach their trainees around possible obstacles to using new ideas and, preferably, this coaching should continue during implementation stage one-to-one or as a focus group face-to-face or through other forms such as skype, so that trainees can share their experiences of implementation, achievement and resistance alike, including learning around age, culture, gender, emotions, across sectors and levels. Coaching has been proven to support the emotional challenges they experience such as timescales or resources.

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