Monday, January 23, 2012

Do our trainers know how to train?

Another entry from Fred Haskett, Managing Partner – Operations, U.S. Lawns of West and St. Charles County

Do we really know how to “Train Our Trainers?
A lot of us are in the midst of working on our “Training Programs.” This is an area that, as I have talked to different people around the industry is a continuing source of angst. We live in an information rich environment. There are literally hundreds of places to get technical and business information. At PLANET (the Professional Landcare Network) members are lucky to have at their fingertips: programs, books, videos, DVD’s, CD’s etc. These represent some of the most cutting edge information and data available.
Yet with all of this “STUFF” why is training still a constant source of frustration for us large or small?
I do not think the problem is in finding the RIGHT STUFF. The problem is: Do we, as owners and managers, know how to TEACH the RIGHT WAY. To be effective, we as trainers need to be familiar with the nature of the Teaching-Learning Process
Teaching is directing the learning process – Motivating – Reinforcing – Satisfying Needs – Creating Interest – all toward the trainees goals.
Learning is the process by which a trainee, through his own activity, becomes changed in behavior.
Training Methods are those techniques (procedures / processes) used by the trainer to instruct the trainees in the knowledge, skills, and competencies necessary to achieve the objectives of the lesson.
BEFORE YOU TRY TO TEACH … you should know how people learn.
There are five basic ways in which trainees learn. Your job as a teacher / trainer is to select the way or combination of ways best suited not only to your trainees, but also to the particular thing being taught.
1)     Doing: Performing a new job in the same way, with the same tools and equipment, under the same conditions as they will have to do this task in an actual real-life situation.
2)     Thinking: Solving a real-life difficulty or problem: getting the facts needed to solve it; discussing it with others; arriving at decisions; putting the decisions into action, and testing them.
3)   Seeing: Observing a thing being done; studying pictures, charts, videos, illustrations, and real objects
4)    Being Told: Getting information and instruction through words – written, spoken, or printed.
5)     Being Checked and Corrected: Learning through mistakes brought to their attention in a positive manner by an alert, competent trainer.
I have found over the years that adults learn their basic and fundamental skills and tasks best with a combination of these processes. At our company we have been using the following training process for the past few years and have seen a definite up-tick in the effectiveness and results from our training efforts and events.
The most important thing about this process is that:
                   … You must utilize it consistently and in the sequence it is presented in.
               … You cannot skip steps and achieve the results you want.
I have found also that providing this simple tool to your trainers will make them more comfortable and less fearful of their role as a trainer.
We call it  --  SHOW, DO, WATCH, COACH
1) WHAT: Explain what it is that you are going to train on.
2) WHY: Explain why you do what you are going to train on.
3) LISTEN: Have the trainee explain what and why we do the specific process or procedure.
4) SHOW: Demonstrate to the trainee the specific process or procedure.
5) DO: Have the trainee demonstrate the specific process or procedure.
6) WATCH: Observe the trainee demonstrating the specific process or procedure.
7) COACH: Explain to the trainee what they did right and what they need to correct.
8) SHOW: Repeat the demonstration of the specific process or procedure emphasizing the areas the           trainee needs to correct.
9)  DO: Have the trainee re-demonstrate the specific process or procedure with the corrections you           demonstrated.
10) WATCH: Observe the trainee re-demonstrating the specific process or procedure.   
11) COACH: Explain to the trainee what they did right and what they need to correct. Repeat steps 8, 9, 10, and as required.
12) PRAISE: Compliment the trainee on their successful accomplishment.
A Simple Process … that can and will apply to virtually any person or any area of your business.
As we all know … Training is not a full time job it is an all the time job.
If your trainers have the right tools they can get the job done for your trainees.


Allan Jones, Jones Management said...

Thanks for adding this content, i was looking for the same from past many days, Thanks for sharing

James Green said...

This is some great advice! I am thinking of taking on an apprentice for plumbing training in a few months and you have definitely opened my eyes to some interesting questions.

Anonymous said...

The ``DO`` word. Knowledge can be a Fig Newton of your imagination. In training, the key first step is figuring out what you (i.e. your business plan, etc.)WANT YOUR EMPLOYEES TO DO DIFERENTLY AFTER HAVING BEEN TRAINED. If your training imparts new knowledge but does not result in a change of behavior, go back to step one and start over.

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