Workplace training

The responsibility for training lies with three participants – the employee himself, his manager and the HR manager – who have different roles, levels of influence and areas of responsibility in this process. The global trend of corporate training, which started before the crisis and was only spurred by its progression, leads to the fact that training “goes” to the workplace, the responsibility for its results falls more on the employee and his manager.

Training goes beyond HR processes and becomes a function of the company management as a whole. The role of HR, T&D manager or trainer in the process of training changes – they become more methodologies, consultants, support, performing their role in a rigid connection with the company’s business goals.

The approach to the training structure “70-20-10” (not only abroad, but also in Russia) is becoming more and more widespread. Its popularity confirms the usefulness of on-the-job training. The essence of the approach is simple:

  • 70% of the time is spent on training by solving real problems in the workplace;
  • 20% of the time is spent on-the-job training with a more experienced employee: mentoring, coaching, mentoring, tutoring, etc..;
  • 10% of time is spent on classroom training: seminars, training sessions, etc.

The tone of the “70-20-10” approach in general and on-the-job training in particular is set by large divisions of multinational companies, corporate universities, training centers of market leaders. The competency-based approach, which has gained popularity, also contributes to its dissemination. More and more companies in Russia are developing or adapting competency models. Competencies do not develop overnight, their progress needs to be worked on painstakingly, individual training sessions will not help, that is why the role of on-the-job training is growing.

MARS is committed to the “70-20-10” approach, not only for training line managers, but also for top managers.

The “70-20-10” approach is also used at Hewlett-Packard. Elena Tergueva, HR Manager at HP, comments on their choice: “Due to the specifics of our educational system, we are used to considering training as a formal classroom, while training takes place to a greater extent in practice, where the role of a mentor, manager is very important. The development model “70-20-10″ existing in HP implies that 70% of the time is spent on training during practice, i.e. we learn by doing something directly, while 20% of the time is spent on mentoring by the employee’s manager, and only 10% is spent on formal classes”.

Natalia Shuriga, HR Director at Microsoft Ukraine (she is also responsible for HR issues in Kazakhstan, Armenia and Azerbaijan) notes that their company philosophy is “Every employee is responsible for his or her own development”: “We have 70% of training and development at the workplace, by solving new tasks, 20% – by communicating with other people – colleagues, management, subordinates, and only 10% – by self-development and training.

Methods of learning in the workplace

Experts of GC “Training Institute – ARB PRO” define on-the-job training as improvement of an employee’s level of competence without in-service training through continuous practice and interaction with a more experienced mentor.

The methods that managers can apply when training employees at the workplace are diverse:

  • Including the learner in another person’s activities (badding, budding);
  • Supervision of the work process (shadding, shadowing);
  • Internships, rotations (second, secondment);
  • Targeted experience transfer (mentoring, mentoring);
  • Discovering the learner’s potential (coaching, coaching);
  • Supporting the learning process, discussing the experience of transferring the knowledge gained into real practice (tutorship, tutoring);
  • Using integrated learning technologies (coaching).

Between coaching, tutoring, mentoring and supervision, however, each of these methods has a clear application.

Mentoring is a meeting where a more experienced mentor shares his experience in solving business problems by describing situations from the past, his approach to solving them and his logic (learning from his case studies as he did in such situations).

Coaching is not based on presenting and copying other people’s models, ways of action or cases, but on the organization of independent problem solving (with the help of coach) by GROW technology, when the trainee finds exactly his own solution, and the coach asks questions, guiding his search and thinking.

Supervision is an included analysis of the trainee’s actions and feedback from an experienced mentor in a practical situation (they do not analyze the difficulties of applying the models in practice as in tutoring, and the supervisor observes the behavior and looks at the level of formed skills).

Tutorship – meetings at which the experience of transferring the obtained knowledge into the real practice of the trainee, difficulties arising in transferring the model and new effective ways of behavior are discussed.

It is not only the manager who can train the employee at work. Experienced colleagues are another source of knowledge and experience. The target audience for this form of training is almost all categories of personnel: new employees (both young and experienced who have come to the company); current employees if they need to transfer new knowledge and skills.

At Ford Motor, for example, this form of training is also used for managers. The company has an Executive Partnering program. It consists of promising young managers accompanying top managers to whom they are attached for eight weeks everywhere. They attend all negotiations, take part in meetings, and travel to the sites. In doing so, young managers become familiar with the full range of business tasks that managers face every day: interaction with different people, problems of resource allocation, etc.

Working with managers when introducing on-the-job training practices

For those tasked with training people in the workplace, there are 2 main areas that require attention:

1) Motivation of learners

Pay or not pay your mentor for his role? If you pay, how much? How do you involve your managers in the idea that training your subordinates is their job? The experience of the company “Training Institute – ARB PRO” has proved that not only monetary motivation is applicable to managers or mentors, but also various methods of non-monetary incentives.

Case studies from the practice of GC “Training Institute – ARB PRO”:

  1. In a company which is a regional representative (perfumery, cosmetics, household chemicals) there is a competition for the status of a mentor. The contest takes into account: personal effectiveness of work, the result of passing a theoretical exam on product knowledge, the results of participation in the assembly. The decision on mentoring is taken only for a year. The whole year the mentor receives additional salary (example of monetary motivation).
  2. 2. Insurance company. Line managers are mentors and coaches of their group and conduct trainings.

Their income is made up of:

(1) percent of their own sales,

(2) additional salary for mentoring and coaching,

(3) percentage of over-fulfillment of the plan by the beneficiaries of his group,

(4) In the future, the best line manager may become the agency director receiving interest from the whole agency. (Example of cash motivation).

Workplace training
  1. Wrigley company

Line managers are mentor coaches, this is reflected in their job descriptions. This work is not additionally paid, but actively promoted as an element of corporate culture. At the initial stage of implementation of the program (these duties), the best manager (whose people have shown the best results in their work) was given a trip according to their preference. The idea of a prize and reward was widely advertised in the company. Then every year the best manager is given a car. The project manager of the introduction of training by line managers notes this effect: managers enjoy such work and training. (An example of non-monetary motivation).

  1. “Pyaterochka” shopping chain. There is an institute of mentors. Mentors are an elite “club”, which is not easy to get into. The motto of mentors is “Share your knowledge and faith with your partner!” Mentors become mentors only at will. Who wants to become a mentor writes a statement that will be satisfied if: there will be two recommendations from other mentors, a recommendation from the manager, if loyalty to the company will be positively evaluated and the mentor has excellent knowledge in his field. There is an icon for a mentor. A mentor does not get a salary increase for his work. There are rallies and special events for mentors. (Example of non-monetary motivation).

2) Training of trainers

There is no doubt that companies want to trust their employees to be trained by professionals. Managers need knowledge of adult learning, skills and development technology. The experience of the company GK Training Institute – ARB PRO shows that the role correlation between teacher and pupil is important here. It is good when a trainer can clearly say who he is at the moment – mentor, coach, tutor or supervisor. Learning these technologies, knowing how to distinguish them, using the methodical means in time makes it possible to achieve the desired learning result in a short time. Then mentors act with greater confidence and willingness to transfer knowledge. This helps them to realize their motto: “I will teach them everything that I know how to do myself”.

For example, the skills of tutor talk can increase the effectiveness of the training the employee has completed. Such a conversation takes place 2-3 weeks after the training, it lasts no longer than 1 hour. This is a one-on-one meeting, where the experience of transferring the acquired skills and knowledge into the real practice of the participant, the difficulties arising, and the development of new effective ways of behavior are discussed. An external trainer can conduct the tutor talk, but it is possible to teach these skills to line managers. Both projects were implemented by our company, both formats proved to be effective.

Tutor competencies:

1) knowledge of the model (clear technologies of knowledge and experience transfer; algorithms of behavior – how to act in a specific professional situation).

2) knowledge of mentoring and coaching technologies to better understand their role at any given time

3) business studies

4) Developed interpersonal and communication competences

All these skills can be provided by an external trainer, as well as support (including tutoring) in setting up on-the-job training for managers.

Coaching is an effective way of learning on the job.

Coaching also deserves attention in the field of workplace training. According to foreign researchers, the profit gained far exceeds the investment in the development of coaching culture. Some data from foreign coaching practices:

  • A study by the International Personnel Management Association found that productivity increases by 88% if coaching is used in combination with training (if without coaching, only by 22%).
  • A Fortune 500 telecommunications company determined that their top management’s ROI for coaching programs was 529%.
  • The Metropolitan Life insurance company determined that the productivity of the sales staff who participated in the intensive coaching program increased by 35%.
  • MetLife invested about $620,000 in the coaching program, resulting in a measurable benefit of $3.2 million.

Despite this investment appeal of coaching, there are serious difficulties in implementing this method of on-the-job training. In Russia, for example, we see a lack of trust and openness between a trainee and a trainee. According to Trainings, at the beginning of 2008, almost 40% of companies did not use or did not plan to use this method of training due to the specifics of corporate culture, current attitudes of managers, lack of understanding of the coaching process.

Foreign countries have different problems in using coaching. According to BlessingWhite’s survey of 2014 employees and managers from 17 countries, 42% of respondents believe that coaching takes too long and diverts them from other priorities. 32% of respondents from the UK and Ireland may not think so, but said that they have a catastrophic lack of time for coaching. By the way, 29% of US managers and 38% of Asian managers think the same. BlessingWhite experts believe that the top management of companies should urgently work on changing this attitude to coaching from line managers. After all, coaching is one of the most effective methods of working with employees, especially in crisis conditions.

In Russia, coaching is already quite well described as a technology of on-the-job training: stages of a coaching conversation, effective questions, stages of the coaching process. This allows us to talk about the real possibility of coaching implementation. Our experience of coaching managers of various companies says that managers readily accept the basic ideas of coaching and use them in the future at the workplace.

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