March 15, 2018

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We bet that now 2018 is well under way, you’re starting to reflect on the success of the new year so far. Reviewing the first quarter of the year is a great way to track the progress of your yearly production goals. It’s also equally important to make sure you’re meeting the professional needs of your employees in order to ensure their success in supporting these goals.

If you haven’t put much thought into building the skill set of your employees, it’s not too late. And it’s a crucial component in productivity! The benefits of continuous learning is not simply improving upon the skill set of existing employees (although that is extremely beneficial in itself) but are also found in the health of the company (including culture) as a whole.

Let’s review why continuous learning should be part of your focus for the remainder of the year. Implementing training that supports and broadens an employee’s skills can help your company retain good talent. It encourages a healthy company culture which in turn makes great employees want to stay and entices new talent to come on board.

Sounds like a smart idea, right? It is! So how to implement continuous learning? it’s not as complicated as it might appear but it does take some thought before diving into. Successful programs follow these guidelines:

1. Identify learning programs, both in-house and outsourced, that will both grow the skill set of employees and align with company goals. Communicate with your employees on how you expect them to incorporate these new skills into their tasks and any expectations of increased productivity by years end.
2. Supplement employee training with mentorship. Regularly discuss the progress of their learning and how it relates to their job performance. Set attainable goals for them to achieve as their training increases. Contests are a fun idea for reviewing an employee’s progress as well.
3. Live It: Embed learning into company culture. Identify ways you can incorporate learning into management’s approach with their teams. Your managers may need additional coaching skills and it is important to equip them with these skills before setting expectations of successfully leading their teams through training.
4. And most importantly, communicate to your employees the motivation behind the training and ask for their feedback. A weekly/monthly “What I learned this week/month” meeting can be an efficient way to check in on the progress of your program and how it is being received by the team. Their feedback could prove invaluable in making adjustments and therefore furthering the success of the program.

In summary, allow for these three keys to the success of a continuous learning program: the time (it takes to train employees), the tools (you use for training and embedding it into the company culture), and the follow-up (feedback and other metrics you’ll use for evaluating the success of the program). Following this guideline can ensure that your program makes sense and finds success!

If implementing a continuous learning program seems daunting, we can assist! Eos HR Consulting is here to make sure your new programs are implemented without a hitch. Reach out to us today and we’ll tell you how we can help your company hit your yearly goals!

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