Does Your Training Have an Objective?
Sometimes I have to apologize for my daily insight as it should be a no-brainer. Yet, it seems every week there is a call or an executive that wants some type of training for their company or group that can not answer this question.
How can you determine the return on investment for any training if there is no thought regarding the objectives or outcomes from the engagement?
This has been (and seems to continue to be) an issue in the corporate environment. There are direct and indirect expenses involved with training as well as time lost from a daily job environment. If there is no objectives – ones that can be measured – how can anyone determine if the training is paying back?
Therefore, before engaging in any training session think though the possible outcomes, expectations of improved performance and the overall objective of the training. And, compare this against a factor of no training. Now, that is a gutsy call from a company that provides training for their clients. Yet, the key in my opinion is when you can show increased performance in terms of payback time and a return over the investment – then the training could increase along with performance, productivity and profitability.
Here are the things you must think about before engaging a training solution:
- What is the problem costing you today? Learn about the direct and indirect cost of the problem.
- What is the true cause of the problem? To often, the symptom of the problem is identified rather than the root cause. Most wasted training dollars are assigned to fixing a symptom rather than the real problem.
- What other areas of the company are impacted by this problem? Learn the extent of the problem. This exercise will move fixing an issue to the front burner of the action stove – to eliminate both cost and team issues.
- What is the annualized cost of the problem? Now the size of the little daily issue grows into the proverbial 800 pound gorilla!
- If we eliminate the problem, what will the investment be? Identify your investment requirements. This includes both the direct costs of the training – including travel, rooms, equipment, etc – and the indirect costs – opportunity costs, lost time at the job, daily payroll and benefits of the participants, etc.
- What is the projected return on investment? Does the investment pay back? Will the gains in sales or the reduction of costs cover the added investment? These questions must be answered and answered in the positive.
- What is the speed of initial payback? Sometimes this question becomes the key factor in choosing a solution. Which solution will payback first as well as which solution will continue to payback – greatly increasing the return on investment over an extended time period.
The above questions will open the door to greater effectiveness in your developmental budgets. If you do not get answers from anyone providing training solutions or promoting their training solutions, then you must look for the one that will connect the dots for you. Ask if they provide any Metrics to uncover the cost of the problem or issue. That would be a good indication as to the level of business acumen they possess.
Call us at 901-757-4434 if you want to learn the true costs of issues such as – hiring and selection, retention, training, sales training, leadership development, customer service training, communication and process effectiveness. We have been in the business of helping our clients for over 20 years and we can help you. Call us.
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Voss Graham is an Organizational Architect with 30+ years of experience designing sustainable business growth for organizations of all sizes.
Creating the Strategic Focus with the Executive Leadership Teams, he uses Systems & Process to ensure the Drivers for Business Growth are Executed at the Highest Levels. Voss is available as a Speaker for your conferences or company meetings – contact him at 901-757-4434 or use the LinkedIn or Facebook direct messages.