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Strengthen Your Human Capital Investment with Staff Development


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Strengthen Your Human Capital Investment with Staff Development

  1. 1. Leading printing executives into the future Strengthen Your Human Capital Investment with Staff Development By Jerry Scher Published: November 2, 2012 Study after study has shown that the performance differential between your top performers and average performers is substantial. Whether you measure productivity, revenue, profit or innovative contributions, your "A" players can really pay off in the short and long term. In earlier articles in this series we focused on how to re-engineer your recruiting and hiring systems and I hope you gained valuable insights into this critical process. But once these "A" players are employed, your focus must be on leveraging their capabilities and of course retaining them over time. "The performance differential between your top performers and average performers is substantial." Training and coaching is the fuel that drives your business's growth and the people that work within your organization. The purpose of this article is to provide some insights into how you develop effective training and coaching programs. Training Overview As your business transitions through the different stages of maturity, dependence on more skilled and knowledgeable people becomes essential to your success. As you become focused on increasing productivity, efficiency, business expansion, profitability and customer and employee loyalty, it becomes increasingly clear that the knowledge, capability and skills of your team members will either be a limiting factor or a source of unlimited opportunities. Experience has demonstrated that well designed and executed employee training programs will strengthen employee recruiting programs, increase productivity, improve quality, reduce employee turnover, increase efficiencies resulting in superior profitability and minimize the need for direct supervision or micro managing. In fact, when employees have the capabilities to perform their best, the company performs at its best. "Training and coaching is the fuel that drives your business's growth." When you hire new employees are they capable of hitting the ground running or does it take longer than you would like for them to be significant contributors? Are your experienced employees continuously enhancing their skills or have they stopped growing professionally and
  2. 2. become a drain on your organization. Companies can gain a competitive advantage through their employees' capabilities; they are the link to your clients. A systematic program of training should be developed for your organization so that you can provide skilled, competent staff; they are essential to building a strong and profitable company. Programs for new hires should be well planned and customized to meet the specific needs of your new team members. The emotional impact of participating in well-designed training programs, starting on their first day, can do wonders for employee morale. As a result of participation in on-going training programs, employees will become emotionally committed to solving new challenges that continually arise. If you agree that providing training to employees at all levels of experience (not just new employees) is an essential ingredient to building a successful organization then you must bear in mind the principles, content and process necessary to design an effective training program. New Employees What's it like for new employees the first day on the job at your company? Who is responsible for their orientation and what information is covered? When it comes to new employees, it is crucial that their orientation be carefully planned. They must be prepared to do the work they were hired to do as well as learn how to work within your organization. The trainers must carefully communicate your organization's expectations and facilitate the initiation of critical relationships as well as mentoring opportunities. Frequently, new employees will select one company over another based upon the training they will receive and the personal growth opportunities your organization can provide. Carefully determine the skill level of your new employees. Observe their work performance, interview them about their strengths and weaknesses and focus on the types of questions they ask. Interview their more experienced colleagues about what training they require and provide customized training opportunities as well as the standard programs you provide to all new employees. If you want to maximize your return on investment, you must leverage every training opportunity with new employees. The sooner they develop the required skills, the sooner they will be productive contributors to your organization. Experienced Employees Seasoned, experienced employees require continuous education to maintain their knowledge, skill level and capabilities. Training programs can communicate your organization's focus as well as promote the need for personal development. During training sessions you can identify the wants and needs of your employees and identify those people who can become your future supervisors, managers and leaders. "Companies can gain a competitive advantage through their employees' capabilities."
  3. 3. In an industry struggling with the challenges of continuous change, experienced employees must stay current with changing technologies, methodologies and processes. Your investment in their continuous improvement will reap an abundance of benefits. Studies have shown that employees that participate in continuous personal development are more loyal, productive and long-term contributors to their company's success. Consider the following steps to designing a systematic program of training • • • • • • • • • Review your organizational objectives and determine the skills employees require to do their jobs effectively. Assess the skills of current employees and all new employees to determine their strengths and weaknesses. Establish training objectives for each group of employees. Select the employees that will participate. Select the training methods and modalities that will be utilized (i.e., on the job training, classroom, role playing and simulation, audio/visual media). Select the trainers for your programs. Go outside your organization, if necessary. Administer training to the selected employees (i.e., location, facilities, resources, timing). Design an evaluation process for each training program utilizing both pre and post- tests. Appraise the curriculum and modify and revise as needed. Who should do the training? You must identify people within your organization that have the required knowledge and skills and have demonstrated the expertise to train others. These people should participate in train-thetrainer programs so they can learn the skills necessary to become effective teachers. If you don't currently have people on staff, look outside your organization. Take advantage of programs offered by industry and trade associations, as well as services provided by your valued suppliers. If you carefully design a well thought-out systematic training program for all aspects of your organization, the training resources are not difficult to identify. If you would like more information about assessing eligibility, suitability and learning more about conducting professional interviews, please contact Jerry Scher at or 404-9319291. You can also get information about the Harrison Assessment at Stay tuned to this continual series – as we focus on how to design and implement an effective sales management program. Jerry Scher has been engaged in the graphic communication industry for over 35 years, Jerry's primary goal - make those around him more successful.
  4. 4. PEOPLE. PERFORMANCE. PROFITABILITY. About Peak Focus, LLC People. Performance. Profitability. Peak Focus gives you the tools to grow, develop and strengthen your team. With a mix of resources that we’ve created ourselves, as well as several powerful tools we’ve carefully assessed and believe in, we combine our passion and experience to guide companies and individuals toward optimized performance. Select your team members with confidence, help your key players develop their soft skills, and learn how to coach your entire team more effectively by engaging the experts at Peak Focus. For more information and access to free resources, please visit our website at Engage With Us Free tools, resources & updates LIKE us on Facebook Check out our blog Follow us on Twitter Follow us on LinkedIn About What They Think? WhatTheyThink is the printing and publishing industry’s leading media organization; offering a wide range of publications delivering unbiased, real-time market intelligence, industry news, economic and trend analysis, peer-to-peer communication, and special reports on emerging technology and critical events. WhatTheyThink also hosts webinars and live events that are timely and relevant o today’s busy industry executives along with consulting and speaker services that leverage a talented pool of writers and industry analysts. Peak Focus LLC © 2008-2013 • All rights reserved. Unauthorized duplication in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.