In principle, large multinational companies have their own departments whose sole task is to develop new training programs and come out, most of the time, with ingenious approaches to handle work related concerns, and workplace safety practices. Even so, there are paradoxes that are most of the time overlooked.

The Issues

For one, it is more motivating for trainers to conduct training programs with large audiences rather than a single recruit. Conducting training to a solitary audience is harder because it invites among other things, informality. On cases like this, the trainer is seldom on his toes and therefore not at his or her tiptop best. Because there is limited interaction, the subject is not well explored.

The point is, when this is true with large companies; imagine how it is with the smaller ones. To think that smaller companies need as much training of their employees if not more. Since this cannot be totally avoided, ensure training quality, by including the new recruit to attend the next larger training seminar even when the topics discussed are similar.

Another attitude towards training that decreases its effectiveness is that many employees treat training as a day out of the office. It is another mental exercise day. Due to this, training is attended only for compliance and not for self or safety improvement.

For employees occupying higher positions, training is taken more lightly. The higher the position goes, the less attentive the attendee may be. Sad but true, because even as the concern is an improvement, the actual result is good money that is wasted. This is complicated by phone calls that kept on interrupting, even for employees that are really trying to participate. The usual reason is that there are affairs in the office that only the person on the phone could handle.

Boring modules, poor presentations, and dry delivery fails even the best and most important of topics. Attendees will actually try understanding and make the effort to cooperate but the span will be short.

Another problem with some companies that have their own trainer in house is the fact that year after year the attendees are hearing the same voice present the same material. Eventually, even those that are eager to soak in more knowledge on the safety topic will begin to tune out and soon will be lost forever.

The Proposal

Training must be an enjoyable experience. Encouraging light exchanges of personal experiences as it relates to the subject at hand, avoiding dry, boring, and long and dull delivery. Subjects must be well thought off and relevant yet encouraging levity and interaction.

Module content should be exciting and compelling. Topics must be reality-based and are best if the discussion is anchored on actual experiences in the workplace. Because it is within the actual realm of workplace experience, the training is more meaningful, better remembered, and is better acted on by the trainees. People remember stories more so than just throwing a bunch of statistics or facts at them. Great H&S trainers should always try and bring everyone into the conversation and never focus solely on their own story.

A department in the office that cannot function without a leader's supervision is not an efficient organization. That is a subject for other training. The idea is when leaders like supervisors and middle managers are called to attend a training seminar or course; interruptions must be totally discouraged except on matters that are absolutely needed. This means that everything must be set aside and the calendar vacated in favor of the seminar because when it is not, there are supervisors and managers that will actually encourage calls to create an impression of importance thus negating the value of the training because of continuous interruption and the competing for attention.

By bringing in external trainers and training companies the students are always getting a fresh new voice and new shared experiences to make the training much more effective facilitating a better learning outcome.

Workplace safety is one of the most valuable of training programs, as it is one of the most tangible and visible effort that the management is truly looking out solely for the betterment of the employee. By having middle and upper management actively participate in the training classes it show the rest of the employees that they are valued and cared for. If an employee feels he/she is a valued and important part of the company they are more likely to go above and beyond their regular job duties. This will certainly increase moral, production and the over culture of the company.

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