HR Management & Compliance

How Can You Boost the ROI of Your Training?

With continuous pressure from management to demonstrate the ROI for corporate training, trainers need to deliver programs that give the company the most bang for its buck. One way to accomplish that goal is to tailor sessions to the audience by considering their:

  1. Learning styles and learners’ experience,
  2. Knowledge, and
  3. Personal characteristics.

Accommodate Different Learning Styles

Use a variety of training techniques to ensure that you accommodate all learning styles. For example:

  • Visual learners need graphics and other visual aids to process the information.
  • Auditory learners, on the other hand, learn best by hearing information.
  • Kinesthetic learners need hands-on activities in order to retain the most content.

In a classroom setting, a PowerPoint® presentation combined with a discussion may appeal to visual and auditory learners, but that approach makes it difficult to engage kinesthetic learners—unless some hands-on activities are also incorporated into the program.

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Choose Appropriate Level of Detail

Before developing and delivering the content, find out who the training session is geared toward—new hires or longtime employees, rank-and-file workers or managers, employees with or without a technical background, etc.

An audience’s experience, job responsibilities, and technical expertise should be considered when deciding what level of detail to provide. For example, a program that includes highly technical information may be lost on nontechnical staff, and experienced workers will think training is a waste of time if it attempts to teach them information they learned years ago.

Similarly, an in-depth discussion on the fine points of the Fair Labor Standards Act or other employment law probably isn’t the most appropriate way to proceed with frontline supervisors. It’s more important that frontline supervisors understand how the law impacts them and the employees who report to them.

Consider Learner Demographics

Demographics can also impact learning. For example, Joy Bowles, a professional environmental, health, and safety trainer, says that men and women respond differently to workplace training. This has implications for trainers, who can improve how they communicate with male and female learners, Bowles said during a presentation titled, “Training with Dick and Jane: Training Strategies for the Sexes.”

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“Men tend to think in a linear sequence, receiving instruction or responding to it with as few words as possible; while women want more information, the how and why,” David Galt, a managing editor at Business & Legal Resources, wrote in an article about Bowles’s presentation. “This means women may want more time to absorb information than men for certain tasks or ideas.”

However, when developing and delivering training, be careful not to discriminate against—or make assumptions about—a particular group of workers based on their gender, age, or other characteristics.

In tomorrow’s Advisor, we’ll give you 6 tips for more effective training lectures, plus we’ll present an exciting training resource of prewritten PowerPoint courses on a variety of key HR topics.

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