This is especially helpful when assessing healthcare needs in a hospital setting. With a large budget decrease but increasing nursing demands, proper training is essential. Although contracting and health seem to be very different, the concepts are similar in that people must learn how to do their jobs independently, and can only do so when management supports it. Thank you for this well written article.
Training Employees in a Down Economy
It's the budget line that gets cut first: Training and Education for employees. But is that the right line to snip from the budget when what you need is more productivity, more knowledgeable employees, and employee retention?
When thinking of where to invest during times of tight economic decisions, one place that often gets overlooked is Training.
A good employee becomes a great employee with professional training. You can cut a mid-level manager by re-assigning his or her responsibilities to less experienced personnel. And training sets the stage for new career paths with your employees...ways in which they want to shine, learn more, and produce something new.
In my industry, general contracting, training is often the responsibility of another over-worked employee who may not have had proper training him/herself. One bad habit or one mistaken piece of information gets transferred down the tube and the employer is left with, not two fully trained employees but two naive employees, both of whom think they're doing everything right. Training keeps industry strong by having experienced professionals who know the business teaching and tutoring in the most profitable, most industry-standard methods...methods that may have never been brought to the company before. I recently came in contact with a woman who was working with her husband in a construction-related business. She never had training of any kind and was completely lost. She needed someone to explain each step of the most important processes to help her see that what she was doing actually wasted a great deal of money for her husband’s company. It took several tries but she eventually “got it” and things began to improve. But as she encounters each new process, she continues to be lost because they haven’t invested in training. A good, structured training program over a few days would introduce her to things she cannot possibly anticipate on her own. And it would definitely be money well spent.
If a company is anticipating cut-backs, the reductions should be in areas that won't continue to negatively affect the company when times begin to get better. Training the right employees for the right reasons with the right professionals will keep giving dividends long after the recession is a distant memory. I remember being sent to a training seminar early in my career. It was held in a beautiful resort near Mount Hood in Oregon and lasted four days. As a young woman, I was at first thrilled to have been asked if I’d like to attend; the excitement of being together with more seasoned professionals, one-on-one in an environment that fostered in-depth consideration of the subject, was nirvana. As I got involved in each of the seminar subjects, I found such motivation and insight that my “thrill” changed to a serious desire to understand the concepts being presented. I found the communication with much older and wiser professionals provided me with small snippets of ideas that I could bring back for my career…things that I would never experience sitting behind the desk in Portland. I’ve often thought about that seminar. As time passes, so do many of our old notes and I no longer have the workbooks we labored over so diligently those four days. But I’ll never forget the value of having additional education, additional training, and exposure to new experiences that actually helped me carve out my early career.
Any employer who’s thinking of Training should think of him/herself and the beginning point of his/her career. Would you have figured things out more quickly, been more readily agreeable to taking on new responsibilities, and established yourself as a valuable employee even earlier and with even greater depth if you had professional training? We never know what we don't know...it's up to a professional Trainer to find out what that is and expose the employee to it in a way that continues to benefit both the employee and the employer.
Learn more about the author, Viv Weinkauf.
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- employee education
- invesing in employees