Because performance is the output from learning, training your employees is essential for developing your pool of talent. The performance increase achieved will depend on the quality of the training experience and how easily learning can be applied on the job.
Imagine it’s the birthday of a special person close to you. Knowing the person is a lover of chocolate, you take on the challenge of baking a triple-chocolate birthday cake. Following a recipe and using certain ingredients guarantees a delectable result…okay, so it may not look as pretty as the Instagram picture, but get your quantities right and the taste will hold its own.
Although there may not be an exact learning recipe that guarantees a specific yield of employee performance, there are some ingredients, or principles, you can apply for tasty training savored long enough to be put into action on the job.
In this article, PulseLearning explores four principles for boosting employee performance with corporate training.
1. Empower your people.
Empowered employees are people who feel respected. A key way to show respect for your employees is to allow them to be the “cooks in their own kitchen” by giving them appropriate control of their corporate training. This is made easy with well-designed eLearning so employees can complete training requirements as and when it suits them.
For example, a short microlearning module can become a welcome pause between work tasks, slotted in where it naturally fits in an employee’s busy day. Training in bursts at an employee’s discretion keeps them in control of their productivity and means you don’t need to take them away from their work for larger blocks of time.
2. Focus on application.
Just as there’s no point baking a cake you can’t eat, providing training that cannot be applied is just as disappointing. The goal of learning is to increase performance, meaning application of skills and knowledge must drive the design. If you are training employees on a new process, have them practice it in your eLearning by allowing them to navigate a real-world situation through a branching scenario.
If knowledge retention is a potential issue, provide takeaway quick guides that employees can keep in their desk drawers. Or, for complex learning, you can consider blended learning where you can present theory and demonstration videos in eLearning, and then follow through with face-to-face sessions where employees put skills into practice with guidance.
3. Listen to what they have to say.
Yes! It sounds simple, however, not all organizations involve their employees in the learning design process. Ask them what they need to increase their performance, and then when you have delivered the training, ask them how they felt about it. Be sure to actually implement the feedback as part of your continuous improvement processes, and communicate this back to your employees. Remember, engaged and respected employees are productive employees, so keep them in the loop.
4. Don’t forget the frosting!
Bland training is like a cake without frosting—it’s not worth consuming. Research has proven that we have increasingly short attention spans…and they’re even shorter if we’re not engaged with an online experience right away. If you are going down the eLearning route, it must be measured; that is, it must include the right proportions of multimedia elements to connect the learner emotionally with the content. Video and animation are highly effective mediums for presenting information in short time spans in an entertaining format. Mediums including gamification, simulations, and branching conversations really are the icing on the cake!
Gone are the days of page-turning corporate training and drawn-out classroom sessions. In today’s business environment, it takes a different recipe to increase employee performance. Although there may not be any guarantees of the exact results you can achieve, an experienced design and development team will know just how long to bake your training to give you the best rise in performance.