Thursday, February 19, 2009

Training Remains a Hot Topic

Despite the adage, “In a recession, the first thing to bite the dust is training,” how interesting that training remains a hot topic these days. Businesses seem to be seeking more support for their shrinking ranks to ensure that the best among them get even better. In fact, even individuals are seeking coaches out of their own pocket in a broad range of disciplines. Evidently, these proactive folks believe that they have to be ready for any opportunity that might pop up in these unstable days—and my experience over these past few months have shown that they are popping up all the time and all over the place. Therefore, one must always be “in training,” even outside the training room.

A recent article in the Wall Street Journal (“Lessons Learned” by Harry J. Martin, December 14, 2008) draws the same conclusion. The author, an associate professor of management and labor relations at Cleveland State University, mentions some excellent pointers for employees to keep on top of their game, including:
  • Logging what they have learned and turning into a concrete action plan
  • Seeking help from their peers and managers in tracking and developing their skills
  • Accessing experts in the specific skills they aim to improve.
For sure, companies have to make training real for their staff by conducting post-training assessments and monitoring their skill development. Once the educational opportunity is sought by the employee, supported by the manager, and evaluated by the company, training becomes a winning proposition.

Thanks to Peter Aviles of New York City Transit for bringing the article to my attention.