Training Methods For Employees: What Works Best?


Sara Meij

Start with your new hires

Starting with new employees sets the standard on what you expect from your employees. That’s why new employee training is the first building block of developing a company culture of learners excited about their career growth. You’re able to train new hires on the history of the business and what it takes to be successful in their role. Typically, new employees should be in their training period 30 to 90 days. That’s a reasonable time to complete onboarding and for managers to learn what specific skills that employee needs to continue growing.

1. Evaluate each opportunity and choose wisely

To help you get past the sticker shock of direct and indirect costs associated with employee development, look at it as an investment in your business and your employees. Do your due diligence to get your money’s worth, maximize your return and ensure your employees (and your business) benefit from the experience.

2. Plan specific skills training

What is your vision for your organization? Your key initiatives for this year? What about individual employees’ career goals? When presented with a professional development opportunity, cast an analytical eye. Make sure the content and performance outcomes align with your organizational goals and your employees’ development plans.

3. Establish performance outcomes

How will what they learn help employees be more effective in their roles or help them accomplish their career goals? Guide them in establishing specific, clear outcomes for the training and encourage them to write them down. It doesn’t matter if they’re formally documented or jotted in a notebook. Studies show that the simple act of writing out goals and objectives increases the likelihood they will be achieved.

How to choose the right learning method for your staff

Choosing the right type of training for your staff depends on many aspects, including what their training needs are, how they learn, what the goal of training is, your budget and how much time you want to spend on training. Deloitte says that:

Corporate training departments must become ‘learning experience architects’ (to use a term from design thinking), building a compelling and dynamic experience for employees and helping employees learn how to learn.

For someone whose learning style is auditory, video training might be a good fit or a blended learning mix of classroom-style training and online learning. An employee who thrives on getting their hands dirty and learn by doing, interactive training and gamification might be right up their alley.

It’s a challenge though to cater to every employees’ specific learning needs when providing training. Having the option to provide a range of different learning styles and reporting options within one platform, like with the GoSkills LMS, could save you time and money.

Perfect PowerPoint®

PowerPoint presentations are one of the most popular and powerful training tools in use today. As with any tool, there’s a right way and a wrong to use it—and the tool’s effectiveness is directly proportional to the way it is used. Here’s how to get the most effective use of PowerPoint presentations:

  • Outline your presentation’s main points and message before creating a single slide. Story comes first, then slides.
  • Keep slides simple. Use only three to five bullets and one or two graphics per slide.
  • Keep animation to a minimum. Don’t use it just because it’s there. The software allows you to make text and images move, blink, fade in, swoop over, etc., but most of this movement is only a distraction and actually hinders audience retention of the points you’re trying to make. Trainees may pay more attention to the pretty colors or the impressive effects as words come flying in than to the information those words contain.
  • Limit the number of slides to between 20 and 30. This is generally a comfortable amount of information to give out in an hour-long presentation. Fewer slides may not cover a topic adequately and more slides may cause information overload in trainees.
  • Run your completed presentation a few times on your own computer to fix any glitches. Also run it a few times on the computer you will be using in class to make sure it works smoothly on that machine.
  • While running your presentation in the training room, figure out the best place to position yourself. Choose a spot that gives you easy access to advance slides as well as availability to audience members so that you can see whether they want your attention to ask questions or comment on a slide’s points.
    When rehearsing your presentation, experiment with lighting in the room to make sure that slides are easily visible and that there’s enough light for trainees to take notes.
  • Begin each session by giving a brief overview of the topic and/or asking participants what they expect to learn before getting into the slide presentation. This establishes a connection between you and the audience in which you can set up an atmosphere of
    interactivity before lowering the lights, which could inhibit audience members from speaking up if you haven’t set the stage for them to feel free to do so.



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