Corporate investment – training is essential to employees at all levels. While everyone wants their business to take an active role in learning and development, it is still a function of when the wind blows. From New Year Fireworks to Detty December dancing, the value of training is tied to the season and what is relevant to that season.
“Five, Four, Three, Two, One; Happy New Year!” Light, airy, refreshed, and empowered employees start on a pretty high note. The resolutioners make long lists, the planners get thinking, and the executioners are eager to jump into it. Where is the training department? They are often on holiday enjoying the free season and creating plans, budgets or listening in on top strategies for the year. Eventually, the flame dims, and work starts after a few “Just do it” meetings that don’t tell you how. That is one huge miss because it is a great season to engage, excite, and learn off the pressure.
The First Quarterly review holds, and everyone has a few mumbled-up words and numbers because the “strategy” just started making sense, budgets only got approved, and things are finally about to start moving. Training picks up and then competes with work pressure and employee frustrations. Time flies, and it’s Summertime! Leave requests pile up, and even when they do not, most people are exhausted. At this point, training is an escape route to avoid work, grab a free bite, and get home early enough to catch a few more winks than usual.
Two quarters later than the second, cold air blows, and its ember time! For some reason, HR or Training departments try to squeeze the rest of the years’ worth of training into the season to be jolly! It is not the worst season to learn, but learning for a strategy at the end of the strategy review period seems just a little too late. Doesn’t it?
After that, fly by the clock, it’s probably clearer that the wind changes fast, and because of its speed, it’s hard to get the timing right. Timely and relevant training is essential to a winning corporate culture. So how exactly do you get it right?
- Treat training as a timely investment: The value you get is a function of when you give. There are different training for different seasons of employees lives, career journeys, and the work year.
- Help the business dress for the weather: As I said, the wind blows quickly. Sometimes there is a plan, and sometimes there is not. Sometimes things change – ask 2020 if you are wondering what could change the entire work game. You need to watch the signs and be prepared to deviate, re-adjust, and give what the business needs no matter what you thought you had structured out.
- Pay attention: Training departments need to step out of their glorified knowledge cocoons and watch what is going on; from when to train in the year, to what time of the day to train, to what is needed. The best way to get it right is to pay adequate attention. It involves listening, learning, asking, and following through when you get insight without letting the moment pass.
It was just a little punch to say if you didn’t watch the weather this year, it’s almost Christmas, so get your jolly hat on and don’t force it! Find what is right for this season and get the best value you can before you lose the year altogether. A little secret you didn’t know – if you follow any great consultant’s training calendar, you may find tips on what works best when, and that’s because we play the meteorologist role and set dates based on trends. We also change our game once we spot that something has changed.