Performance is the deciding factor in how valuable an employee is to an organisation. Since every employee is a significant investment for a company, the return that each employee provides must balance that investment somehow.
One sure-fire way to acquire top talent and secure it is to provide training and development courses to employees. This adds to employee experience directly which is highly prioritised in business. Employee experience has a direct impact on retention and is one of the bigger points of consideration for candidates looking to step up within the organisation.
If you look at how well an employee fulfils their job duties, you can gauge the quality of their work and the efficiency of their output. Where lacking, many of these skills can be enhanced by engaging them in professional development courses.
These training courses can help employees improve performance across different measures such as speed and efficiency, quality and output as well responsibility and consistency. Taking part in such programmes also earns participants training and development certification which can help them climb the professional ladder.
So, whether someone is a team leader or an employee, it’s relevant to assess performance and see where there is room for improvement. Both leadership and employees can benefit when a well-planned training design is implemented within the organisation.
Here are five different ways to improve performance with training and development.
1. Get familiar with new technology
New technology is a constant source of stress for employees. Yet, it is also a must for any business to keep from falling behind. Figuring out how to use technology takes time, as does teaching it to others, as well as learning to use it properly on the employees’ part.
The best technology to implement within a business is that which is user-friendly and comes with tutorials covering the basics. Learning curves can vary for different employees where you may find some who love learning new technology while others resent the change to what they considered tried and true.
To make sure that you don’t get left behind, take full advantage of every training session your company offers. If you need additional help, you can always sign up for online training courses where everything from the basics of Microsoft Office to the most advanced applications is deliverable.
These courses can provide the missing link between the training and the job and help you understand how learning these skills can facilitate your job and streamline different processes. There are various platforms that can be used to train users to use unfamiliar software in real time.
Among these, digital learning solutions that deliver contextual learning are the most effective. These tools allow users to finish any task easily by setting up real-time support and navigation. When users learn to do their work while learning a new software, the stress of digital transformation can be mitigated significantly.
2. Work on your soft skills
One very important aspect of training and development is to work on your soft skills. While most of the focus goes to hard skills during the hiring process, employees can really improve their performance and advance their careers by polishing their soft skills.
This is a set of skills that is equally important for management positions as it is for customer interaction. A learning program that strikes a balance between teaching technical skills such as accounting or web design and promoting soft skills such as conflict resolution and time management makes a good fit to cover different aspects of the job.
Businesses today have become global and highly interactive via telephone conferences, online meetings, and video calls. To interact with such a wide audience, employees need to master communication, conflict management, and negotiation skills all at the same time. As such, the area of virtual communication needs to be excellent.
The same goes for other areas of soft skills, also called people skills. Developing these personal attributes can make you more successful at negotiating, strategic thinking and planning, providing better customer service, and working with team members.
Soft skills can also be your gateway to finding, attracting, and retaining clients. When you exhibit highly-developed presentation skills, networking abilities and etiquette awareness, you can easily grow your clientele. It will also help you form stronger relationships with vendors, colleagues and other professional contacts.
3. Use blended learning
You can choose to study at your own pace via eLearning or you could opt for in-person training. Both methods have their own set of advantages but combined they offer the best of both approaches. Combining traditional with online training allows employees to learn at their own pace and get the support they need if and when required.
By opting for training and development programmes that use blended learning, you can develop your communication, critical thinking and problem-solving skills by partnering real and digital mediums into the learning process. Integrating face-to-face and online training delivers a richer training experience and simplifies corporate training logistics.
You can benefit from the components of flexibility and convenience of online learning while also take advantage of the social interaction component of traditional learning. The degree of flexibility mentioned here is significant as you are able to access your training material using mobile devices anywhere, anytime. Online learning also solves the problem of multiple time zones and materials are always available when needed.
By becoming a member of both the real and virtual classroom, you get to access online resources and the continued need for a human component in the learning experience.
4. Engage in hands-on training
Based on the type of industry you work in practical experience and hands-on training may be the way to go for you. This is especially true of anyone working in a skilled trade industry.
Working in a hands-on environment allows learners to engage deeply with both materials and concepts. This combination prepares you for problems you may encounter on the job. Engaging in hands-on learning lets you become familiar with the way materials look, feel and function.
Research indicates that hands-on training yields a higher level of retention than various other environments. For instance, studies show that learners only remember 20% of the information presented in lecture format and a whopping 75% of the information they learn firsthand. And while everyone does learn differently, these statistics show that interacting directly with materials leads to stronger memories of the learning experience.
5. Manage your time effectively
You may possess the strongest hard skills needed for your work and the finest soft skills to complement them, but if you are not proficient at managing your time while on the job, your performance will suffer.
Time management training is an essential component of professional development to enhance work performance in any aspect of your job. Whether you work at a desk, handle lots of paperwork, do audits or presentations, or are a team leader, you can improve your productivity through effective time management.
People who realise the importance of time management know that time is limited. All employees, including yourself, get 24 hours in a day, yet some seem to only get half the amount of work done as others. Those good at using their time optimally figure out a way to manage this limited resource well.
This quality can help advance your career, for as you accomplish more every day, your peers and superiors will notice. Leaders will approach you to get things done which makes you a good candidate for advancement opportunities.
Effective time management lets others know that you work smarter than harder which is a quality that leaders seek in their team members. Everyone wants that employee who is punctual, can meet deadlines, make better sales, produce superior quality work, is willing to take responsibility and shows the potential to develop themselves.
After all, the saying goes “time is money” and organisations want to get their money’s worth out of their workers
To conclude, employees are everything to a business. Regardless of their job title, their performance will have a direct impact on the organisation where engaged, competent employees will have a positive effect on the brand, but poorly performing ones will leave the business and clients frustrated.
Employees who are given the chance to learn on the company’s behalf or those that take the initiative to better themselves by engaging in training and development courses are likely to stay with the business much longer and reduce expensive employee turnover.