Providing Support for Long Term ResultsSep 07, 2023
Setting crystal-clear objectives for the changed behaviors we need to see after training and the results those behaviors should be yielding is certainly critical but stopping there will still leave quite a bit of profitability left unclaimed! A stark reality every leader will need to face is that implementing a new behavior or changing from one approach to another is never as simple as telling someone that’s how it’s gonna be… If we want those behavioral changes sustained long term, we’d better be prepared to provide ongoing support!
An article from Maryville University called Importance of Training and Development for Employees provided some clarity on the various steps in the process by sharing this:
Employee training and development programs are essential to the success of businesses worldwide. Not only do these programs offer opportunities for staff to improve their skills, but also for employers to enhance employee productivity and improve company culture.
Employee development is the continuous effort to strengthen work performance through approaches like coaching, training sessions, and leadership mentoring. Training is a specific event that teaches new information or skills, often provided to new or newly promoted employees.
One of the most important things I learned in all the years I worked in behavior-based safety was that most of our work routines are based on habits. Those habits, good or bad, took time to form and take every bit as long to change. Many of the sources I studied at the time referenced twenty-one to thirty days to form a new habit or change an existing habit to a more desired one. My point here isn’t to dig into the science behind the specific number of days but to emphasize the need for providing support to anyone we’ve trained as they work to apply that training and form habits based on what they’ve learned.
The Strategic Leadership Coaching approach I referenced before has been one of the most effective ways I’ve ever seen for supporting behavioral changes that produce ongoing results in overall performance and increased profitability. With a routine focus on the actual behaviors that are being implemented and analyzing the changes that occur in the process, we’re able to help the folks we’re working with keeping the training top-of-mind and drive actual development. This also allows for adjustments to be made along the way, ensuring they’re achieving the goals they’re working toward.
Quite honestly, offering that as a service was something I did very reluctantly. My goal was always to provide the tools through a training session, set the table for collaboration between the participant and their manager, then get out of the way. In a perfect world, that would always work! For one reason or another, that didn’t always happen. In many cases, the managers just didn’t have time. Sometimes though, the managers themselves didn’t have the skills they needed to effectively mentor their team members who had completed training. After quite a few scenarios showing me that it’s rarely a perfect world, Cindy gently suggested that we act as an extension of that manager by providing the support necessary for turning great action steps into sustained behaviors that capture lost profitability in the organizations we serve over the long haul…
In closing this look at the importance of providing the right training for each individual on our teams, I’ll challenge you to make sure you’re just as intentional about giving them the support they need to truly develop the skill as you are in identifying what skill they need or who is best suited to teach them that skill. I’m not about to pretend this will always be an easy process but I assure you following these basic steps will play a significant part in capturing the profitability that’s killed by thinking any ole training will do…