As the kids head back to school, you‘ve probably advised them to enjoy the variety that education can offer while they still can. However, there’s no reason why the fully employed can’t experience the same enjoyment of learning in the workplace.
If you’re neglecting training in your business, you are failing to spark interest in your employees, make the most of your existing resources and unearth hidden gems within your organisation.
It is possible for small businesses to offer ongoing training without blowing the budget.
Why training is important
Training allows you to make the most of a small company – When you’ve got a small workforce and a limited budget, training can help to make the most of limited resources. Small businesses need multi-taskers and proper training will allow you to develop the people you have to meet your strategic objectives.
It helps to motivate employees – While continuity and security are important during these economic times, employers mustn’t ignore the natural urge of their staff to better themselves. Whether it’s specific new skills and qualifications or individual personal development, training can have a hugely positive effect on morale and also ensure that employees feel valued.
It can unearth hidden talent – Want to find the next CEO of the business? Training is a key part of career progression and can encourage employee loyalty by showing them a route to the top. Not only that, when retirements or resignations do occur, you’ll have a ready batch of willing and capable replacements.
You won’t get left behind – Ongoing training is important to ensure that your company stays ahead of the curve. You’ll need to keep up with innovations in your sector as well as more broadly when it comes to digital and social media, for example. Continued learning will spark creativity and keep your business fresh and exciting.
How to do it without blowing the budget
Harness the power of social media – Either find existing videos, tutorials, webinars and documents (major universities such as Yale and Harvard make much of their curriculum available online) or develop your own resources, such as YouTube videos or PowerPoints, and direct your staff to them.
Ask your senior staff to lead the training – If you already employ experts in a particular field which you want the rest of your staff to know about, call on them to develop resources that can be shared. Don’t overburden them so that they can’t do their actual job properly. Just allow them the resources they need (such as assistants or bonus payments) to spread their knowledge throughout the business.
Use existing resources – Rather than employ expensive professional trainers from outside, use the existing infrastructure you have in place to publicise new training programmes. Make resources available on your company’s shared network, use basic email marketing techniques to publicise them and research free online training options.
How do you keep knowledge and skills up to date in your small business without spending a fortune?