Developing a Holistic Corporate Training Strategy – Interview with Arthur Carmazzi
Developing a Holistic Corporate Training Strategy
Factors HR managers need to consider when building corporate training programmes
Question 1) In your experience, how has corporate training needs evolved? (Are they getting more/less important/popular, etc.) What is driving this trend? What types of training is becoming more popular and why?
Arthur: Skill is only a small part of what makes a valuable employee (14% to 22% according to a 1968 Stanford study). The key factors are attitude and the maintenance of the attitude. So basically, we are dealing with emotions and how they affect not only individual performance, but group performance. So in today’s society, there are drastic changes in how people get their emotional gratifications fulfilled. Mobile phones, texting, Facebook and other social media has made it easier to gain a fast fix of emotional gratification unrelated to the job… PLUS, communication is so fast these days, that change is faster than ever… thus HR leaders now have new challenges: How to create a work environment that supports the success of its people and provide the emotional gratifications to support engagement and implementation of Change that is required!
So training Needs MUST have the emotional component, the flexibility for change and the processes to not only teach skills, but to identify the environmental factors that affect implementation of these skills.
Question 2) What are the different types of training that a HR manager should think about? (Professional, professional, skill-based, leadership, fun/social etc)
Describe what each one entails and why this is important in the holistic scheme of things. Give examples of each.
Arthur: Training, all training whether it is hard skill or soft skill, MUST have elements of a psychology foundation and how the learning affects and applies to Group Dynamics (most people do not work alone and their skills need to coordinate with others workers or department or even organizational objectives).
The other important factor in choosing training is that different people physically process information and the world around them differently. This means that if a training program is designed and/or delivered by a person who only looks at the training and concepts from his/her perspectives, and the delivery, materials and multimedia follow the same process, that there will be a discrepancy in learning from many of the participants… Training MUST take into account multiple brain communication processes in order to be effective across an entire group of participants.
The most effective training is multi-faceted with “experience” involving MUCH more than discussion or games with little relevance to the objectives. It MUST have implementation strategies and emotional connection to those strategies Throughout the training, not only at the end. Learning from the beginning of the training MUST connect to each learning that is after it and be reinforced throughout the program. Research has proven Emotion supports memory and the more good OR bad feelings trainers can create to their learning, the easier it is to retain the information… attaching PERSONAL emotional gratification to the Implementation of each learning through a reflective process also affects implementation.
Peter Senge’s Learning Organization processes are one methodology that takes many of these into consideration as it develops people and their personal success through a group process. This process affects the working environment to be affected and thus leverage the training results.
Example: When an organization applies Senge’s 5th discipline, people come together as a unified force to affect organizational culture. Everyone (well almost) becomes involved and people unite toward being better in through their organization.
Implementation of 5th discipline initiatives has positively affected organizational culture in less than 1 year of implementation.
Directive Communication Group Dynamics Psychology is another discipline that is designed for Training (as mentioned above) as well as Organizational Development. It incorporates the Colored Brain psychometric model to make sure that all Brain Processors are included and maintains motivational psychology throughout the entire training process to improve implementation. Directive Communication has also developed a series of proprietary tools that build and reinforce learning and emotional connections to the learning for better retention and action. Also, since Directive Communication Psychology is an applied Group Dynamics methodology designed for Organizational Development, every learning and exercise is tied to the incorporation into a group setting to affect the overall working environment to leverage training results to affect organizational culture.
Example: After a Directive Communication based course such as the HERO’S WAY holistic leadership program (incorporating multiple facets and psychology of what is required to lead well in today’s society), leaders already have an implementable process they have created and are excited to apply it in their organizations to affect their department’s culture and effectiveness. The results are a unified group with a common purpose that is engaged. Leaders bring with them the Directive Communication tools and processes to support them. A 2007 study indicated that Directive Communication workshops got 42% more retention and 38% more implementation than other experiential based workshops.
Directive Communication has also been used in Culture Change initiatives that resulted in visible culture transformation in less than 80 days.
Question 3) When it comes to training, how can HR managers weight the benefits of in-house versus external vendors?
Arthur: To answer this, you must look at the commercial side of it. To create a public course, event organizers must make an enticing but generic program. Then they must charge enough to compensate for advertising and marketing as well as making a profit. So on a per person basis, it becomes very expensive. And then the is the “Being on the same page” factor. When you send 1 to 3 people to a public workshop, they come back with new ideas they want to try, if the trainer and training methodology were good, the participants are motivated… there is only one problem (ok two), no one else went to the training, no one else got the motivation and no one else is convinced, so the power of environment wins again and what could have been a great asset, becomes another cool idea that never got implemented because there were not enough people that bought into it. The second problem is that other people may have had Different Training and have very different ideas of what should be done, so often what happens is NOTHING gets done due to the politics and people just giving up because its too much hassle.
On the other hand if say 20 or 30 of your people (who have access to each other) attend the same class, they have a support group to make things happen, they can apply what they have learned and compare notes on progress, they can hold each other to objective related commitments. They speak the same language and have the same vision to improve personal and organizational success. And, depending of the type of training, they may be able to leverage the core methods to other training… saving time and effort in other disciplines. The DC360 System uses the core training methodology.
Question 4) What must HR managers keep in mind when developing a programme to ensure all levels of the organisation are looked after?
Arthur: HR is not only responsible for arranging training, but to promote training to their stakeholders. So, when HR partners with the marketing guys, there is a winning combination (unless of course the course provider provides this service). Most of the new staff will welcome training but the higher you go, the more training they have had and with their busy schedule, the last thing they want is the same old stuff regurgitated into a new title. They MUST have something NEW, something they have not learned and it must seem relevant to solving THEIR problems. Of course if the training program does meet the criteria, HR still needs to promote it and get them excited that, YES, This Training, IS the one that will SOLVE their Problems (ok, some of their problems)!
Question 5) What are the basic components (checklist) to consider when selecting courses and vendors?
o MUST have the emotional component, the flexibility for change and the processes to not only teach skills, but to identify the environmental factors that affect implementation of these skills.
o MUST have implementation strategies and emotional connection to those strategies Throughout the training, not only at the end.
o MUST connect to each learning from the beginning to the end and reinforce it throughout the program.
o Training methodologies or certifications MUST be accredited, you don’t want someone reading a book and calling themselves an expert. Organizations like the American Institute of Business Psychology and Accrediting Council for Continuing Education & Training are independent bodies that assure organizations get what they are paying for.
o They should have video testimonials of participants, written testimonials are often questionable but video is verifiable.
I will actually be doing a webinar regularly over the next few months giving more detail on these factors if you would like to link your audience to it… it is free: http://www.ewebinars.com/634/3nqtaqala9/webinar-register.php