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Improving Operational Performance & Talent Management
through Employee Development Initiatives

Employee Competency Seminars
An essential addition to on-boarding and effective performance management
What's an employee competency seminar?

Gain the a
nswer to that question and learn how we arrived at the 6 themes / topics listed below.  Read article below                                                                

After reading the article below, you'll see why we are offering these 6 as a series.  There are a variety of ways to book them: all at once, throughout the year, once a quarter -- particularly if you want your entire staff to experience them. To learn more about each individual seminar click link for each topic-theme.

1. Personal-Professional Branding => ownership, engagement, personal empowerment-leadership

2a. Time & Productivity Management => get it done, get results
2b. Productivity & Technology (using Microsoft office suite of tools (a ton of time is wasted here). These topics are presented by our SME partner Michael Meskers.

3. Emotional Intelligence => work effectively with others, can be managed, lead

4. Team Collaboration (aka team building) => work effectively with different work styles/personalities

5. Creative & Innovative Thinking => learning to think, problem assess, problem solve.

6. Business Writing - Your Brand in Writing => to write and express yourself professionally - presented by our SME partner Mary Beth Fleming.


Are You Complicating Your Employee Training Decisions?
I gotta say I've been around the block a few times when it comes to employee training. For those reading who are not familiar with my background, the short story is I've conducted several thousand professional development seminars though-out North America over the past 15 years. If you want the long story, here's my bio.

Through that experience here's a key conclusion I've drawn -- we over complicate employee training and development and therefore waste a tremendous amount of money. I believe there are several reasons why, which I'll address in upcoming posts. For now, I'd like to present a simple perspective on how to view and make decisions regarding basic employee training.


Before I do, I want to quickly make the distinction between training and development (a distinction our industry desperately needs to make).  I've experienced that in most cases when people use the word "training" what they really mean is the act of learning -- that is taking in new information. What they might be hoping for is develop
ment -- skill acquisition and/or behaviorchange.  We all know learning "about" a skill, does not a skill make.  That's why making this distinction as we plan our talent training and development strategy and spend our precious dollars is so important! So as you continue reading, I'll be making that distinction by referencing employee training as learning seminars.


The Simple Perspective
I had the great fortune of working with a national public seminar company for which I delivered many topics. During the course of my time with them, I came to realize that related to key soft skills in the context of work performance, no matter what the topic was it all came down to just a few key themes. Additionally, a lot of the essential content could be repeated no matter the topic.

So, in working with private clients both in delivering learning seminars and one/one performance coaching, I've come to the conclusion that there are in fact basic individual employee competencies that should be a fundamental part of any company's employee training/learning plan. 


I'd like to present them via 6 questions and then the recommended behavior theme and corresponding learning seminar (in some cases the theme and the learning seminar topic are the same):

1). Can and in what way (style, attitudes, behavior) will they do their job...will they get the results desired? - execute key deliverables in the time allotted? - driven by how they think and behave

Behavior theme & learning seminar topics : self management, personal motivation = emotional intelligence (EQ)  | getting results/desired outcomes =  time & productivity management | ownership of work product, personal commitment to engagement = personal/professional branding | ability to learn, think, problem solve = creative, innovative, critical thinking

2). Can they work effectively with others?  understanding, respecting and learning to work with different work styles, personalities = emotional intelligence, team collaboration | rapport & relating style = communication

3). Can they be lead? (an element of #2) e.g. work well with authority / leadership - relationship to authority = EQ

4). Can they and are they willing to add value in ways beyond their job description? personal values = personal/professional branding | situational leadership = holistic leadership | EQ

5). Can they effectively communicate in writing? = business writing (this is a huge problem).

6). Are they using technology competently and productively (We've found a lot of time wasted due to a deficit in functional knowledge with common software).

In summary, beyond the question is someone capable of doing a job based on executing the functions of the job, you can see that success in any role (even at a management level) can be broken down to (assuming they are the right fit for the job)... "can I and am I willing to manage myself to get results and can I and am I willing to work constructively with others?"...and do I know how to...?


In my experience I am completely convinced that setting performance expectations through key, required, base line learning seminars can help to minimize a lot of employee management challenges and provide support and a foundation for coaching and managing that performance for supervisors/managers.

In summary, if you had to choose what learning seminars to spend your precious budget on here's what the topics should be: 

1. Personal - Professional Branding => ownership, engagement, personal empowerment, individual leadership

2. Time & Productivity Management => get it done, get results

3. Emotional Intelligence => work effectively with others, can be managed, lead

4. Team Collaboration (aka team building) => work effectively with different work styles/personalities

5. Creative & Innovative Thinking => learning to think in general and critically, assess, problem solve

6. Business Writing = learn what key mistakes are made in writing, grammar and spelling that are easy to make and miss.


Now, no matter the creative title of a seminar (and there are many out there -- seminar companies are good at that for marketing purposes), these core learning seminars need to inform participants how to:
>  self manage, self motivate, take ownership
>  management time to get results and learn to be the most productive they can
>  work collaboratively and constructively with others, which includes working appropriately with authority and as well as peers
> learn to think and problem solve (this is an ownership element as well)
> express oneself with the written word
> leverage technology to competently execute work

Your Next Steps
I encourage you to use this article as a baseline for reviewing your employee training philosophy, expectations and planning from a fresh perspective and in that consider the following action items: 


1). Consider the concept of individual employee core competencies.  What behaviors and attitudes do you want as a performance base line for every employee?


2). Review your decisions regarding any employee training you've done over the past year, particularly what topics were chosen. Compare those to the suggested core employee competency themes.


3). Look at where your training dollars are going -- how have they been spent?...(particularly as it relates to performance needs of your employees).

4). If this article resonates with you, you'll want to explore bringing our Employee Competency Seminar Series to your organization. Click here to learn more


5). View this additional information video on how to make the best decisions for employee training


One Final Note
This post addresses the employee's role in a company getting desired results.  The other essential component is the role of the manager. We have created a unique approach to management competency development (notice I used development vs. learning) -- learn more here.

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NEXT STEPS
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Check Out Each Session 
We recommend you book the entire series, but they can be booked separately.
>  My employees need to take more ownership - engagement starts with them - Personal Branding
>  My employees need to get things done and achieve better results - Time & Productivity Management
>  My employees need to get along better and be more collaborative - Building Strong Teams
>  My employees need to be more skilled at self-management, working with different types of people, while working well with management - Emotional Intelligence
>  My employees need to learn how to think more creatively, problem assess and problem solve. - Creative & Innovative Thinking
> My employees needs to build their knowledge and usage of Microsoft Office suite of products: email, excel...etc. (contact to discuss need)
> My employees needs to improve their writing skills (1 and 2 day business writing seminar available)
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Additional Employee Learning Seminars

Don't see a topic you need?  We partner with some of the best workshop facilitators/subject matter experts in the industry. Shoot us an email regarding your needs: joann@thehumansphere.com

Bridging the Gap - Decoding Differences in Generations, Gender, & Genetics (its a spin on diversity with a combined emphasis on generational differences, gender, cultural differences - very fun)

How to Manage & Resolve Conflict | This also is a must have. I address this as one that directly impacts company operations and profits.

Request summary and outline: joann@thehumansphere.com