In order for your business to succeed, you need well-trained employees. Unfortunately, small businesses often remove employee training from their budget when they need to cut costs. Some companies ignore training altogether because of the time it takes from their small staff. Don’t make those mistakes.

Poorly trained employees have low levels of engagement and motivation, and they tend to leave their employers more quickly than their well-trained counterparts. Take a look at several reasons and tactics for educating your team and contributing to your company’s success, regardless of its size.

THE WHY

Personal growth

Most people don’t want to work in a dead-end job for an extended period. Instead, employees need to feel like they do valuable work that makes a difference for their company. Hope for advancement within the organization also motivates workers to work hard and seize opportunities for career growth and development.

When you furnish your team with training that helps them do a better job in their current position and prepares them for future responsibilities, it gives them a sense of value. Sometimes the skills employees learn on the job can also help them in their personal lives, contributing to stress reduction and improved well-being. For example, learning a new language or finding ways to use new technology makes people more versatile both on and off the job.

More productivity

People with a broad set of relevant skills find greater satisfaction from their jobs. Because they feel more valuable and are able to utilize a wider skillset, they also tend to produce more during the workday than those with fewer skills. Your business also benefits from well-trained employees as they can fill multiple roles during peak demand periods and compensate for absentees.

Employees with a lack of job-related skills often lack motivation and procrastinate because they feel unimportant and don’t care about the quality of their work. You can make your entire company more productive just by providing your employees with the education and training they need.

Employee retention

Small businesses often fear that employees will quit after taking advantage of training and development opportunities, so they hesitate to do anything in support of staff education. Rather than taking their skills and training to another firm, however, employees usually stay longer with their employer and have a sense of loyalty that keeps them engaged and motivated.

When you stimulate your employees’ careers with a comprehensive training program, you make them feel empowered and optimistic. The money you spend on employee education might seem a lot a lot at first, but you quickly recover the expense in the form of reduced employee turnover and staff with enhanced capabilities.

THE HOW

Now that you have reasons for providing employee education, use the following tactics to get your program started. It doesn’t matter whether you have two, three or thirty employees – what matters is that you educate them properly.

Setting and announcing clear goals

Get your training initiative started by creating a culture of trust within your business. Explain to your workers what training and development opportunities you will give them and why they should regard them as important.

Make sure you present your educational initiative as something that benefits them directly rather than as extra work. Nobody likes to work more, but everybody likes to self-develop.

Make sure everyone in your organization has a clearly defined role so that you can identify the skills needed for each job. Doing so will help you provide relevant training to each of your employees and make your training program efficient.

Motivate your team by creating additional opportunities that will prepare them for advancement – give them a chance to pursue the kind of training they like, not just the one that is company-assigned. They will appreciate the opportunity more than you know.

In the end, don’t forget to carefully plan the financial aspect of your training program and measure its outcomes. Educating your employees pays off, but only if you do it right.

Employing different methods

To accomplish your training and development goals, try using different methods. Employ online resources as well as book and classroom learning to command attention and prevent boredom. You should also look for unconventional ways to provide education if you can – variety counts.

Take advantage of available educational technologies that make flexible training practices possible even for small organizations. For example, educational websites and applications can engage employees during their free time or during scheduled time set aside for training.

Employees can also have the option of taking advantage of massive open online courses and e-learning platforms. Technology-based training is efficient, cheap, and convenient, so why not give it a try.

When it comes to offline methods, consider trade conferences and professional seminars. They supply an outstanding environment that will educate your team about your industry while teaching them how to work more efficiently.

You should also employ in-house training methods that transfer knowledge from seasoned workers to the less experienced. Such opportunities can use varying degrees of structure and formality to get the job done.

Evaluation and feedback

The atmosphere within your business should encourage employees to provide honest feedback about how you can provide better training and support for them. Respectfully consider all the suggestions and opinions you receive so you can make your educational program more useful and fun. Without constant evaluation, there’s no room for improvement.

Make sure you stay flexible and willing to accommodate your employees rather than demanding them to learn in a specific way. Create an incentive program that gives your employees recognition and rewards for completing various levels of training.

For example, you can offer bonuses or certificates as well as some time off to give them a sense of achievement. Your recognition should vary in proportion to the level of skills each employee achieves. In any case, acknowledging their effort can be very stimulating in terms of their productivity.

Conclusion

You can’t afford not to have a training program in place for your employees. When your workers have the training they need to performer jobs well, they feel valuable and stay engaged with your company’s mission.

Similarly, when you give your team members a pathway to advancement, they remain motivated and loyal. Keep teaching your employees and encourage them to reach their full potential and you will reap the rewards for many years to come.

Natalie Smith, a freelance writer from Seattle, follows topics related to entrepreneurship, leadership, marketing, social media, and business in general. You can reach her @Natalie Smith

1 COMMENT

  1. Great article. If you can demonstrate the importance of managing an employee’s personal finances they will in turn have greater respect for the finances of the business. This can help better manage cash flow, cut down on waste, etc. Most importantly you will have employees that are comfortable and feel valued..

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