Training Gives Confidence
Do you have initial training that gives your new employees the confidence that they can perform what is asked of them? Do they have prepared answers to the most frequently asked questions? If not, you are minimizing your employees’ abilities to succeed in their jobs. And if they can’t succeed on the base levels of customer service and efficient accomplishment of daily tasks, you are sacrificing your business. It is so obvious to me when I interact with employees that are well trained. For example, it is clear to me that GoDaddy customer service representatives are well trained because they have an adept understanding of all the services that would fit my needs. They offer extras and try to up-sell, but all the while they patiently walk me through an issue. In the end, I hang up the phone with the issue solved and a feeling that I would consider spending more on GoDaddy’s services based on their support.
Training is Investment in Growth
After someone is hired and able to work independently, do you offer training that allows her to grow within the business and within the field? Good customer service and administration is the result of consistent training and experience. For example, I recently went to a restaurant that opened up in my area. My wife and I later discovered that the restaurant is part of a larger, regional chain. During the meal, we started to suspect this when we figured out that the key staff (managers etc.) were not new hires from our area. Theses were employees that had launched these restaurants a number of times. The key staff understood the system, knew how to train new hires in the system, and were brought to the area to pioneer a new establishment.
A GlassDoor survey finds that 7 out of 10 employees would rather have better/more training than other options:
When it comes to what’s most important to advance their career and earn a bigger paycheck, more than three in five (63%) employees report learning new skills or receiving special training, compared to those who report receiving a college or graduate degree (45%), transitioning careers or looking for a new job or company (38%), and networking with professionals (34%), among other options.
In the restaurant, the key staff trained the new staff. The recent hires shined. They thrived. Because the chain had invested in its best employees, there was no chaos to the opening. And this higher-level training trickled down to all the staff. You could feel the confidence the new staff had in their leaders.
Training Never Stops
Training is more than knowing where things are and how to run a register. Millard Cull, president of a scientific research and product manufacturing company Avidity, stresses in INC.com:
“Train your employees on what your company stands for: company culture, mission, values, goals, and everything in between. Through this knowledge, your employees won’t just acting as worker bees. They will have a deep understanding of their importance to the overall company and be a better representative of the brand.”
Survey your employees formally or informally–it doesn’t matter as long as you take it seriously–to evaluate training. Figure out were the learning curve is roughest. Ask what training would help them to do their job better. Incentivize training with trips to conferences, bonuses, or pay bumps. Better yet, incentivize training with promotions. The better trained an employee is, the more responsibility he or she can take on. That frees you up to focus on the business and not on catching mistakes or smoothing ruffled feathers.