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Category Archives: Corporate Training

Why—and How—You Should Implement a Training Workgroup

Best Practices, Corporate Training, KAIP Academy, Learning, Organizational Change Management (OCM), Project Management, Prosci, Team Building, Train the Trainer, Training

By Elizabeth Long

Oftentimes, change management consultants enter a project and provide training resources and knowledge for their client. When the project is over, the consultants take these resources and knowledge with them and the client is left without the tools needed to replicate the work in the future.

Something I strive for as a change management leader on my projects is making sure the knowledge stays internal. I want to make sure the client knows what the consultants know, so that client has the information when the consultants leave.

After over 20 years of providing change management and training for clients across all kinds of industries, something I have found that works wonders is a Train the Trainer approach. With a Train the Trainer approach, a training workgroup is developed. This is a training implementation approach that directly engages the client. The training workgroup is important for knowledge transfer and for client ownership of the product.

Here are my recommended steps for creating the framework for a training workgroup in your organization:

  1. Assess the organizational structure and current training environment. Assess who in the organization is qualified to represent their location or department in the training workgroup. If the organization already has training staff in place, great—these folks are likely a natural fit for the training workgroup.
  2. Ask for volunteers to apply for the training workgroup. It’s important that the people identified in step 1 are interested in and want to be involved in the workgroup. After assessing the organizational structure and coming up with a list of possible participants, I recommend asking those who are qualified to officially submit their interest. You’ll be surprised how many people will want to be involved.
  3. Train the trainers. Once the training workgroup is created, members are trained to be able to deliver trainings to their peers. Here they will learn training best practices, presentation skills, and more.
  4. Deliver and check in. When the materials and trainers are ready, it’s time to deliver! Make sure the workgroup checks in regularly to assess how the training plans and resources are working, if there are areas for improvement, etc.

It can take some time, effort, and planning to get the training workgroup set up, but its benefits are numerous. Here are a few:

  1. Aligns employees across different locations. If you have an audience that’s widespread—perhaps there are satellite or virtual offices across cities or states—the representative from each office becomes that location’s training representative. This person brings back knowledge to the staff at their location. This helps create consistency by making sure employees across the organization are relayed the same information.
  2. Reduces travel/cost savings. A natural benefit of the training workgroup is that it cuts down on travel. Instead of sending an entire training team over to a satellite office—or sending the entire satellite office to headquarters for training—the location’s representative manages the training of the staff at his or her location.
  3. Empowers employees and provides them a new skill-set. We recently talked about career development and how important it is for employees to continuously learn and grow in their jobs. Allowing employees to be involved through the training workgroup can increase their skill-set and open them up to future opportunities within the organization.
  4. Knowledge stays in-house. Most importantly, the knowledge, resources, and plans stay with the organization. Once the internal training workgroup creates training plans and resources, there are now materials on-hand to use for new-hires, transfers, those promoting to new roles, etc. People are trained appropriately and are fully prepared with the knowledge and tools they need to succeed.

I have found that implementing a training workgroup can help break down the silos and bring people together. Members of training workgroups often reach out to one another directly to help problem-solve, which adds a layer of collaboration and cohesion within the organization.

Interested in creating a training workgroup or have additional questions? Email us at info@kaipartners.com or ask your question in the comments! Happy training to you!

About the Author: Elizabeth Long is a professional Organization Development Consultant and Curriculum Developer/Trainer. She received her Certification in Organizational Change Management from Prosci and is certified in e-learning development from Langevine Learning Center. Elizabeth has worked in many industries: High tech, healthcare, and state and local government. Currently, Elizabeth works as an Executive Consultant with KAI Partners, Inc. as a contractor working in a variety of California State Departments. Elizabeth has lived in Sacramento for the past 17 years and appreciates the history of Sacramento as well as its convenience to many well-known destinations like San Francisco, Tahoe, and Reno.

How to Plan Your Career Development

Corporate Training, Employee Engagement, Human Resources, KAIP Academy, Learning, Onboarding, Training

By Dr. Melissa McManus, SHRM-CP

Career development is the ability for you to manage your career. It involves goal-setting, awareness, and a willingness to learn. It is an ongoing process throughout the course of your career and sometimes, it can involve a bit of risk (don’t worry, I’ll come back to that later!).

You may have noticed in those first few sentences, I say ‘you’ or ‘your.’ There is a reason for this! Career development is driven by the individual—not by your employer, but by YOU.

While it is not uncommon for a company or organization to facilitate career development—many organizations these days offer employees certification training or tuition reimbursement—it is ultimately up to you to take the reins of your own career development.

Companies typically want to see their employees grow and improve, not only in their current position, but also so they can take on more elevated positions in the future. The better you are at your job, the better off the company is—it’s a win-win situation for all involved.

If you want a promotion, a position in a different department, or to simply be the best at what you do, then you must continue to develop your skills and knowledge.

And, you must be willing to take risks.

Anything worth doing involves some risk. While fear of the unknown and the ‘what-if’ part of your brain can keep you from doing certain things, when it comes to your career development, you should try to ignore that nagging voice. With great risk comes great reward.

For example, I recently obtained a SHRM-CP Human Resources certification through the Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM). This certification provides me with more authority in my area, allowing me to advance not only my career, but within my organization as well. The SHRM-CP provides me with knowledge and skills in my chosen career, and ensures that I continue to be a life-long learner in my area through recertification activities.

While I didn’t start my career with a focus on HR, it was taking risks along the way that allowed me to follow a different path towards becoming SHRM-CP certified. If you don’t try new things, you could miss out on great opportunities—in your career, missing out can lead to stagnation and monotony, a situation I’m sure most would rather avoid.

At this point you might be saying, YES, I want to be in control of my career development! But where do I start, what do I do, and how do I do it?

The best way you can manage your career development is with a solid plan. Here are four areas you should take inventory of when planning your career development:

  1. Self-Assessment – this is something you should do on a periodic basis. This can be every six months, every year, or at an interval appropriate to you and your goals. You should assess where you are currently to help you plan for where you want to go.
  2. Career Awareness – this is understanding not only your current position, but other positions that are available to you based on your education, skills, and experience. This can include an awareness of careers that you want to have in the future, as well.
  3. Goal Setting – set goals, both long-term (5+ years) and short-term (1-2 years), as well as some immediate goals. These should include what you want to accomplish, how, and why. Keep it simple at first—you can always expand and make changes. Plus, changes will likely happen organically as you progress through your career.
  4. Skill Development – develop the skills that will assist you in meeting your goals and keep you informed in your career area. You can accomplish this though reading, seminars, trainings, conferences, etc.

Seems simple enough, right? The easiest way to get started with your career development is to start anywhere you feel comfortable. Famed sales coach Zig Ziglar said it well, “It is not what happens to you that determines how far you go in life; it is what you do with what happens to you.”

How do you incorporate career development planning in your life?

About the Author: Melissa McManus is a Human Resources Generalist and research guru and loves every minute of it. One of her greatest strengths is her resolute ability to soak in new information and her never-ending thirst for knowledge. Melissa has a Master’s degree in Counseling, and a Doctorate degree in Educational Leadership with a focus in Human Resource Development. Melissa’s professional interests include human behavior, career development, research, writing, training, and knowledge transfer. She is passionate about life and describes herself as an avid bookworm. In her free time, when she is not running her kids to gymnastics or karate, Melissa enjoys reading (a lot), wine tasting, CrossFit, being with friends/family, and spending time with her husband and two children.

Why I Make Continuous Learning a Priority

Corporate Training, General Life/Work, KAIP Academy, Learning, Training

By Judi Phelps

I spent 38 years working for a public sector health care organization and although I am retired from that role, I am now in my second career as a consultant in the industry—and I am having the time of my life. I get to bring my decades of knowledge into a new profession, while still working in the field I know so well.

I have learned throughout my career that the processes and systems we use now are not likely to last forever. To keep up with the changing landscape, I have made continuous learning a priority. In my current role, I get to learn and build additional skills that broaden my horizons and bring those skills back to clients. I continue to do value added work for clients, but in a different way based on new methods.

Of course, I wasn’t always so willing to learn something new! I remember early in my career, when computers were first being used. At that time, we did everything with paper and pencil. My supervisor wanted us have PCs in our cubicles and was looking for volunteers to be trained on how to use them. No one was willing to volunteer; people thought it would take too long to learn and would slow down the process.

Although I was initially resistant, my boss signed me up for a class and soon enough, the new way of doing something—in this case, eliminating the paper and pencil process in favor of using a computer—was better.

What I learned in this situation was that we tend to not approach things with curiosity and enthusiasm. We are afraid we won’t do as well or be as productive if we have to take time to learn something new. We assume it will be a long process to learn something new, but it’s really not. It may take a while to become an expert, but it’s not that hard to learn the basics fairly quickly.

Nowadays, I love to learn—and although I am 66-years-old, I am not planning on slowing down. Inspired in part by a “Project Management for Managers” course I took, as well as a Kaizen project I worked on, I was compelled to add another skill to my repertoire. I am planning to begin Six Sigma training. I am excited to learn more and bring what I’ve learned back into the work I am doing now.

Using the Kaizen method was a great learning experience and one that has stayed with me. We looked at processes and procedures and eliminated those parts that didn’t add value. We were able to streamline processes and make staff happier because their day-to-day tasks became easier. It taught me to look at anything and everything and see which add value and which do not.

Of course, learning and implementing new processes is not without its challenges. People don’t see that there are any problems—like me with the computers!—so the first step is getting people to stop long enough to see that there could be a different way to do things.

If I’ve learned anything in my career(s), it’s that change is inevitable. You can either accept change and learn a new skill, process, or methodology, or you can be resistant to change and miss all the fun! I am very much looking forward to my new continuous learning journey and will keep you updated as I move through the training!

About the Author: Judi Phelps has a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and worked for the State of California for more than 38 years, starting as a part-time clerk-typist and ending as a Staff Manager II. Judi worked almost all of that time in various areas of the MediCal program, implementing program policies as well as working to develop policies. As a consultant, Judi currently works with clients to look for better ways to achieve the mission. Judi loves singing and scrapbooking—sometimes together!—for both the paper-craft and the time with friends aspects. Judi enjoys traveling, entertaining, and making memories (to put into scrapbooks) with her two grandsons.

Why Corporate Training is a Must [INFOGRAPHIC]

Corporate Training, Infographic, KAI Partners, KAIP Academy, Learning, Training

Corporate training or career development is important for all employees at any stage of their career. As professionals, it is critical to stay on top of emerging trends, changes in the field, and advancements in technology.

Training is seen as a benefit to potential and existing employees. When job hunting, candidates want the ability to continue to grow and learn in their field and training is a great way to accomplish that. A candidate who sees that an employer offers training is more likely to take that position than with an organization that does not offer training or training incentives such as reimbursement.

The ability to learn and grow personally and professionally is an important factor for many. As a result, it is just as important for employers to offer some type of training program to their employees…Or they run the risk of losing valuable talent.

This infographic from Human Capital Development goes over some corporate training stats, including what kind of ROI you can see from corporate training, popular training areas, and more.

Do you offer training to your employees? How have you found a training program to work for your business?

KAI Partners is Hiring!

Agile, Backend Web Developer, Communications, Corporate Training, Government, Hiring, Human Resources, KAI Partners, Organizational Change Management (OCM), Project Management, Sacramento, Scrum, Small Business, Technology, Training

kai-partners-is-hiring

A new year typically brings some introspection, the setting of goals and aspirations, and the shifting of priorities. Along with the typical “lose weight” or “go to yoga,” maybe you’ve also been feeling the desire to change an aspect of your career. Luckily, KAI Partners is currently hiring! Take a look at the roles for which we are hiring—maybe your dream job is waiting here! Note: All positions are on-site positions based in the Sacramento, California region.

Communications Consultant
The Communications Consultant will play a key role in planning, coordinating, and developing communication and messaging for a large organization. The focus of the Communications Consultant is to act as a single point of contact for all external division communications, which are both written and oral. The Communications Consultant will provide full-service communication services, new media, public awareness, educational outreach, communications strategy, stakeholder, sponsor and program research, and more.
Click here to apply or to view the job posting in its entirety (via ZipRecruiter)

Delivery Manager (Scrum Master)
The Delivery Manager (Scrum Master) shall work to resolve or remove impediments within the team, help manage the team’s relationships with outside stakeholders, facilitate team continuous improvement, and coordinate solution implementation and delivery with other Delivery Managers. This individual should have the ability to develop relationships with all levels of the organization and have outstanding political savvy. We are looking for enthusiastic problem solvers who thrive on being engaged at all levels of the project.
Click here to apply or to view the job posting in its entirety (via LinkedIn)

Backend Web Developer
The Backend Web Developer engages with a number of stakeholders to act as a bridge between current compliance requirements and the new compliance requirements. The success of the Backend Web Developer requires a dedicated professional who possess analytical, programming, and data architecture skills. The Backend Web Developer will need to have experience using modern, open source software to prototype and deploy backend web applications, including all aspects of server-side processing, data storage, and integration with frontend development.
Click here to apply or to view the job posting in its entirety (via LinkedIn)

Training Consultant
The Training Consultant will work across a number of stakeholders, both state and vendor, who collaborate to design, develop, and deliver training solutions to impacted end users within the organization. The Training Consultant should have the ability to develop relationships with all levels of the organization and have outstanding political savvy. The Training Consultant should have in-depth knowledge of training design methodologies. Knowledge of business process and OCM methodologies are preferred.
Click here to apply or to view the job posting in its entirety (via ZipRecruiter)

We look forward to receiving your application today!

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