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Training is one of the most profitable investments an organization can make.

No matter what business or industry you are in the steps for an effective training process are the same and may be adapted anywhere. If you have ever thought about developing a training program within your organization consider the following four basic training steps. You will find that all four of these steps are mutually necessary for any training program to be effective and efficient. STEP 1: ESTABLISHING A NEEDS ANALYSIS. This step identifies activities to justify an investment for training. The techniques necessary for the data collection are surveys, observations, interviews, and customer comment cards. Several examples of an analysis outlining specific training needs are customer dissatisfaction, low morale, low productivity, and high turnover. The objective in establishing a needs analysis is to find out the answers to the following questions: "Why" is training needed? "What" type of training is needed? "When" is the training needed? "Where" is the training needed? "Who" needs the training? and "Who" will conduct the training? "How" will the training be performed?

By determining training needs, an organization can decide what specific knowledge, skills, and attitudes are needed to improve the employee's performance in accordance with the company's standards. The needs analysis is the starting point for all training. The primary objective of all training is to improve individual and organizational performance. Establishing a needs analysis is, and should always be the first step of the training process. STEP 2: DEVELOPING TRAINING PROGRAMS AND MANUALS. This step establishes the development of current job descriptions and standards and procedures. Job descriptions should be clear and concise and may serve as a major training tool for the identification of guidelines. Once the job description is completed, a complete list of standards and procedures should be established from each responsibility outlined in the job description. This will standardize the necessary guidelines for any future training. STEP 3: DELIVER THE TRAINING PROGRAM. This step is responsible for the instruction and delivery of the training program. Once you have designated your trainers, the training technique must be decided. One-on-one training, on-the-job training, group training, seminars, and workshops are the most popular methods. Before presenting a training session, make sure you have a thorough understanding of the following characteristics of an effective trainer. The trainer should have: - A desire to teach the subject being taught. - A working knowledge of the subject being taught. - An ability to motivate participants to "want" to learn. - A good sense of humor. - A dynamic appearance and good posture. - A strong passion for their topic. - A strong compassion towards their participants.

- Appropriate audio/visual equipment to enhance the training session. For a training program to be successful, the trainer should be conscious of several essential elements, including a controlled environment, good planning, the use of various training methods, good communication skills, and trainee participation. STEP 4: EVALUATE THE TRAINING PROGRAM. This step will determine how effective and profitable your training program has been. Methods for evaluation are pre-and post- surveys of customer comments cards, the establishment of a cost/benefit analysis outlining your expenses and returns, and an increase in customer satisfaction and profits. The reason for an evaluation system is simple. The evaluation of training programs are without a doubt the most important step in the training process. It is this step that will indicate the effectiveness of both the training as well as the trainer. There are several obvious benefits for evaluating a training program. First, evaluations will provide feedback on the trainer's performance, allowing them to improve themselves for future programs. Second, evaluations will indicate its cost-effectiveness. Third, evaluations are an efficient way to determine the overall effectiveness of the training program for the employees as well as the organization. The importance of the evaluation process after the training is critical. Without it, the trainer does not have a true indication of the effectiveness of the training. Consider this information the next time you need to evaluate your training program. You will be amazed with the results. The need for training your employees has never been greater. As business and industry continues to grow, more jobs will become created and available. Customer demands, employee morale, employee productivity, and employee turnover as well as the current economic realties of a highly competitive workforce are just some of the reasons for establishing and implementing training in an organization. To be successful, all training must receive support from the top management as well as from the middle and supervisory levels of management. It is a team effort and must implemented by all members of the organization to be fully successful. Regards: Jisha.Nair

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List and explain the five steps involved in the training and development process?

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Angela T

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1. Assess and agree training needs * Conduct some sort of training needs analysis this commonly happens in the appraisal process. * Involve the people in identifying and agreeing relevant aligned training. * Consider organizational values and aspects of integrity and ethics. * Look also at your recruitment processes - there is no point training people if they are not the right people to begin with. * Exit interviews with leavers helps identify development needs. 2. Create training or development specification * Having identified what you want to train and develop in people, you must break down the training or learning requirement into manageable elements. * Attach standards or measures or parameters to each element. * The 360 degree process and template and the simple training planner are useful tools. 3. Consider learning styles and personality * People's learning styles greatly affect what type of training they will find easiest and most effective. Look also at personality types. Remember you are dealing with people, not objects. People have feelings as well as skills and knowledge. 4. Plan training and evaluation * Consider evaluation training effectiveness, which includes before-and-after measurements. 5. Design materials, methods and deliver training * Consider modern innovative methods. * Presentation is an important aspect to delivery.
Source: Small Business Management The quality of employees and their development through training and education are major factors in determining long-term profitability of a small business. If you hire and keep good employees, it is good policy to invest in the development of their skills, so they can increase their productivity. Training often is considered for new employees only. This is a mistake because ongoing training for current employees helps them adjust to rapidly changing job requirements. Purpose of Employee Training and Development Process Reasons for emphasizing the growth and development of personnel include

Creating a pool of readily available and adequate replacements for personnel who may leave or move up in the organization. Enhancing the company's ability to adopt and use advances in technology because of a sufficiently knowledgeable staff. Building a more efficient, effective and highly motivated team, which enhances the company's competitive position and improves employee morale. Ensuring adequate human resources for expansion into new programs.

Research has shown specific benefits that a small business receives from training and developing its workers, including: Increased productivity. Reduced employee turnover. Increased efficiency resulting in financial gains. Decreased need for supervision.

Employees frequently develop a greater sense of self-worth, dignity and well-being as they become more valuable to the firm and to society. Generally they will receive a greater share of the material gains that result from their increased productivity. These factors give them a sense of satisfaction through the achievement of personal and company goals. The Training Process The model below traces the steps necessary in the training process: Organizational Objectives Needs Assessment Is There a Gap? Training Objectives Select the Trainees Select the Training Methods and Mode Choose a Means of Evaluating Administer Training Evaluate the Training

Your business should have a clearly defined strategy and set of objectives that direct and drive all the decisions made especially for training decisions. Firms that plan their training process are more successful than those that do not. Most business owners want to succeed, but do not engage in training designs that promise to improve their chances of success. Why? The five reasons most often identified are: Time - Small businesses managers find that time demands do not allow them to train employees. Getting started - Most small business managers have not practiced training employees. The training process is unfamiliar. Broad expertise - Managers tend to have broad expertise rather than the specialized skills needed for training and development activities.

Lack of trust and openness - Many managers prefer to keep information to themselves. By doing so they keep information from subordinates and others who could be useful in the training and development process. Skepticism as to the value of the training - Some small business owners believe the future cannot be predicted or controlled and their efforts, therefore, are best centered on current activities i.e., making money today. A well-conceived training program can help your firm succeed. A program structured with the company's strategy and objectives in mind has a high probability of improving productivity and other goals that are set in the training mission. For any business, formulating a training strategy requires addressing a series of questions. Who are your customers? Why do they buy from you? Who are your competitors? How do they serve the market? What competitive advantages do they enjoy? What parts of the market have they ignored? What strengths does the company have? What weaknesses? What social trends are emerging that will affect the firm?

The purpose of formulating a training strategy is to answer two relatively simple but vitally important questions: (1) What is our business? and (2) What should our business be? Armed with the answers to these questions and a clear vision of its mission, strategy and objectives, a company can identify its training needs. Identifying Training Needs Training needs can be assessed by analyzing three major human resource areas: the organization as a whole, the job characteristics and the needs of the individuals. This analysis will provide answers to the following questions: Where is training needed? What specifically must an employee learn in order to be more productive? Who needs to be trained?

Begin by assessing the current status of the company how it does what it does best and the abilities of your employees to do these tasks. This analysis will provide some benchmarks against which the effectiveness of a training program can be evaluated. Your firm should know where it wants to be in five years from its long-range strategic plan. What you need is a training program to take your firm from here to there. Second, consider whether the organization is financially committed to supporting the training efforts. If not, any attempt to develop a solid training program will fail. Next, determine exactly where training is needed. It is foolish to implement a companywide training effort without concentrating resources where they are needed most. An internal audit will help point out areas that may benefit from training. Also, a skills inventory can help determine the skills possessed by the employees in general. This inventory will help the organization determine what skills are available now and what skills are needed for future development.

Also, in today's market-driven economy, you would be remiss not to ask your customers what they like about your business and what areas they think should be improved. In summary, the analysis should focus on the total organization and should tell you (1) where training is needed and (2) where it will work within the organization. Once you have determined where training is needed, concentrate on the content of the program. Analyze the characteristics of the job based on its description, the written narrative of what the employee actually does. Training based on job descriptions should go into detail about how the job is performed on a task-by-task basis. Actually doing the job will enable you to get a better feel for what is done. Individual employees can be evaluated by comparing their current skill levels or performance to the organization's performance standards or anticipated needs. Any discrepancies between actual and anticipated skill levels identifies a training need. Selection of Trainees Once you have decided what training is necessary and where it is needed, the next decision is who should be trained? For a small business, this question is crucial. Training an employee is expensive, especially when he or she leaves your firm for a better job. Therefore, it is important to carefully select who will be trained. Training programs should be designed to consider the ability of the employee to learn the material and to use it effectively, and to make the most efficient use of resources possible. It is also important that employees be motivated by the training experience. Employee failure in the program is not only damaging to the employee but a waste of money as well. Selecting the right trainees is important to the success of the program. Training Goals The goals of the training program should relate directly to the needs determined by the assessment process outlined above. Course objectives should clearly state what behavior or skill will be changed as a result of the training and should relate to the mission and strategic plan of the company. Goals should include milestones to help take the employee from where he or she is today to where the firm wants him or her in the future. Setting goals helps to evaluate the training program and also to motivate employees. Allowing employees to participate in setting goals increases the probability of success. Training Methods There are two broad types of training available to small businesses: on-the-job and off-thejob techniques. Individual circumstances and the "who," "what" and "why" of your training program determine which method to use. On-the-job training is delivered to employees while they perform their regular jobs. In this way, they do not lose time while they are learning. After a plan is developed for what should be taught, employees should be informed of the details. A timetable should be established with periodic evaluations to inform employees about their progress. On-the-job

techniques include orientations, job instruction training, apprenticeships, internships and assistantships, job rotation and coaching. Off-the-job techniques include lectures, special study, films, television conferences or discussions, case studies, role playing, simulation, programmed instruction and laboratory training. Most of these techniques can be used by small businesses although, some may be too costly. Orientations are for new employees. The first several days on the job are crucial in the success of new employees. This point is illustrated by the fact that 60 percent of all employees who quit do so in the first ten days. Orientation training should emphasize the following topics: The company's history and mission. The key members in the organization. The key members in the department, and how the department helps fulfill the mission of the company. Personnel rules and regulations.

Some companies use verbal presentations while others have written presentations. Many small businesses convey these topics in one-on-one orientations. No matter what method is used, it is important that the newcomer understand his or her new place of employment. Lectures present training material verbally and are used when the goal is to present a great deal of material to many people. It is more cost effective to lecture to a group than to train people individually. Lecturing is one-way communication and as such may not be the most effective way to train. Also, it is hard to ensure that the entire audience understands a topic on the same level; by targeting the average attendee you may undertrain some and lose others. Despite these drawbacks, lecturing is the most cost-effective way of reaching large audiences. Role playing and simulation are training techniques that attempt to bring realistic decision making situations to the trainee. Likely problems and alternative solutions are presented for discussion. The adage there is no better trainer than experience is exemplified with this type of training. Experienced employees can describe real world experiences, and can help in and learn from developing the solutions to these simulations. This method is cost effective and is used in marketing and management training. Audiovisual methods such as television, videotapes and films are the most effective means of providing real world conditions and situations in a short time. One advantage is that the presentation is the same no matter how many times it's played. This is not true with lectures, which can change as the speaker is changed or can be influenced by outside constraints. The major flaw with the audiovisual method is that it does not allow for questions and interactions with the speaker, nor does it allow for changes in the presentation for different audiences. Job rotation involves moving an employee through a series of jobs so he or she can get a good feel for the tasks that are associated with different jobs. It is usually used in training for supervisory positions. The employee learns a little about everything. This is a good strategy for small businesses because of the many jobs an employee may be asked to do.

Apprenticeships develop employees who can do many different tasks. They usually involve several related groups of skills that allow the apprentice to practice a particular trade, and they take place over a long period of time in which the apprentice works for, and with, the senior skilled worker. Apprenticeships are especially appropriate for jobs requiring production skills. Internships and assistantships are usually a combination of classroom and on-the-job training. They are often used to train prospective managers or marketing personnel. Programmed learning, computer-aided instruction and interactive video all have one thing in common: they allow the trainee to learn at his or her own pace. Also, they allow material already learned to be bypassed in favor of material with which a trainee is having difficulty. After the introductory period, the instructor need not be present, and the trainee can learn as his or her time allows. These methods sound good, but may be beyond the resources of some small businesses. Laboratory training is conducted for groups by skilled trainers. It usually is conducted at a neutral site and is used by upper- and middle management trainees to develop a spirit of teamwork and an increased ability to deal with management and peers. It can be costly and usually is offered by larger small businesses. Trainers Who actually conducts the training depends on the type of training needed and who will be receiving it. On-the-job training is conducted mostly by supervisors; off-the-job training, by either in-house personnel or outside instructors. In-house training is the daily responsibility of supervisors and employees. Supervisors are ultimately responsible for the productivity and, therefore, the training of their subordinates. These supervisors should be taught the techniques of good training. They must be aware of the knowledge and skills necessary to make a productive employee. Trainers should be taught to establish goals and objectives for their training and to determine how these objectives can be used to influence the productivity of their departments. They also must be aware of how adults learn and how best to communicate with adults. Small businesses need to develop their supervisors' training capabilities by sending them to courses on training methods. The investment will pay off in increased productivity. There are several ways to select training personnel for off-the-job training programs. Many small businesses use in-house personnel to develop formal training programs to be delivered to employees off line from their normal work activities, during company meetings or individually at prearranged training sessions. There are many outside training sources, including consultants, technical and vocational schools, continuing education programs, chambers of commerce and economic development groups. Selecting an outside source for training has advantages and disadvantages. The biggest advantage is that these organizations are well versed in training techniques, which is often not the case with in-house personnel. The disadvantage of using outside training specialists is their limited knowledge of the company's product or service and customer needs. These trainers have a more general knowledge of customer satisfaction and needs. In many cases, the outside trainer can

develop this knowledge quickly by immersing himself or herself in the company prior to training the employees. Another disadvantage of using outside trainers is the relatively high cost compared to in-house training, although the higher cost may be offset by the increased effectiveness of the training. Whoever is selected to conduct the training, either outside or in-house trainers, it is important that the company's goals and values be carefully explained. Training Administration Having planned the training program properly, you must now administer the training to the selected employees. It is important to follow through to make sure the goals are being met. Questions to consider before training begins include: Location. Facilities. Accessibility. Comfort. Equipment. Timing.

Careful attention to these operational details will contribute to the success of the training program. An effective training program administrator should follow these steps: Define the organizational objectives. Determine the needs of the training program. Define training goals. Develop training methods. Decide whom to train. Decide who should do the training. Administer the training. Evaluate the training program.

Following these steps will help an administrator develop an effective training program to ensure that the firm keeps qualified employees who are productive, happy workers. This will contribute positively to the bottom line. Evaluation of Training Training should be evaluated several times during the process. Determine these milestones when you develop the training. Employees should be evaluated by comparing their newly acquired skills with the skills defined by the goals of the training program. Any discrepancies should be noted and adjustments made to the training program to enable it to meet specified goals. Many training programs fall short of their expectations simply because the administrator failed to evaluate its progress until it was too late. Timely evaluation will prevent the training from straying from its goals

What Is Strategy Execution?

Posting Date: January 07, 2010 By: Ed Barrows


Strategy execution is a hot topic in management today. In fact, the Conference Boards recent Survey of CEOs revealed that chief executives are so concerned about strategy execution that they rated it as both their number one and number two most challenging issue. For anyone whos tried to execute strategy, this finding should come as no surprise: its estimated that more than 60% of strategies are not successfully implemented.

When asked to define strategy execution, most managers respond with statements like, Its the successful implementation of a strategic plan or Its getting your strategy done. While these perspectives are certainly valid, they arent very helpful in terms of understanding what needs to be done to actually drive business results. Heres a look at some mainstream approaches to strategy execution:

Strategy execution as a process. The most notable book to date on strategy execution is Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done, by Larry Bossidy and Ram Charan. Bossidy, a retired CEO, and Charan, a renowned management consultant, make the case for execution as a discipline or systematic way of exposing reality and acting on it. They explain that the heart of execution lies in three core processes": 1. People 2. Strategy 3. Operations

They explain the processes and descriptions managers use to successfully drive business results.

Strategy execution as a system. The information presented in Execution is certainly useful, but the authors dont fully explain how an organization can implement their three core processes to achieve strategy success. There have been significant advancements in this area since Execution was published in 2002. In 2008, Harvard Business School Professor Robert S. Kaplan and his Palladium Group colleague David P. Norton wrote The Execution Premium: Linking Strategy to Operations for Competitive Advantage. In it they present their management system, which houses six sequential stages intended to help organizations capture what they call an execution premiuma measurable increase in value derived from successful strategy execution. They outline six stages in this system: 1. Develop the strategy 2. Plan the strategy 3. Align the organization 4. Plan operations 5. Monitor and learn 6. Test and adapt

Through detailed subactivities26 in total Kaplan and Norton explain how organizations have successfully executed strategy via application of their management system.

Strategy execution as a step-by-step process. Both of the models outlined above are important and anyone serious about the practice of strategy execution should be familiar with them, but they suffer from what might be called the Goldilocks Problem. The process view doesnt contain enough detail to help managers construct the three processes within an organization (i.e., too cold). Conversely, the systems view contains so many sub steps that it can be overwhelming to managers (i.e., too hot). So, how can we find a solution that is just right"? While there is no easy answer, the best of both approaches can be synthesized into 10 steps outlined below. These steps provide both high level direction as well as the detail necessary to capture the lions share of strategy execution success. Step 1: Visualize the strategy. One of the most pressing challenges in all of strategy is simply understanding what a strategy is. An effective way to improve this understanding is to visualize the strategy via an illustration that shows both the important elements of the strategy and how each relates to one another. Frameworks such as the Strategy Map by Kaplan and Norton, the Activity Map by Michael Porter, or the Success Map by Andy Neely help in this regard. Step 2: Measure the strategy. Key elements of the visualized strategy should be assigned an easily understood performance measure. The full set of strategic performance measures can be organized into a dashboard, a Balanced Scorecard, or some other framework so the reader can determine that progress is being made toward completion of the strategy. Step 3: Report progress. In the same way that a budget is reviewed monthly to ensure financial commitments are being kept, the strategy should be reviewed regularly, but with more of an eye toward determining if the strategy is producing results, versus controlling performance. Step 4: Make decisions. Strategy execution is much like sailing a boat toward a planned destination. A defined course and a full complement of navigational charts will never eliminate the need to remain vigilant, to assess the environment, and to make corrections as conditions change. As part of the regular reporting process leaders must make ongoing strategic decisions to keep the strategy current and on course. Step 5: Identify strategy projects. Organizations may have scores, if not hundreds, of projects ongoing at any point, but they rarely have a firm grasp on the type and range of these projects. The first step in improving project-oriented strategy execution is to capture and organize all projectsstrategy projects in particularthat are underway in throughout an organization. Step 6: Align strategy projects. Once projects are captured they must then be aligned to the strategies or goals for the organization. This step entails comparing each project, either proposed or ongoing, to the strategic goals to determine if alignment exists. Only those projects that directly impact the strategy should be resourced and continued. Step 7: Manage projects. Organizations must develop a capability in project management if they are to execute strategy effectively. In some settings, projects receive very little management. In others, projects persist well beyond their scheduled completion. The full

complement of projects in any organization should be coordinated and controlled by a central project office or officer with the responsibility for monitoring both progress and performance. Step 8: Communicate strategy. It is difficult to execute strategy when the strategy itself isnt well understood, or performance relative to it is not communicated. Leaders must communicate their visualized strategy to the workforce in a way that will help them understand not only what needs to be done, but why. Step 9: Align individual roles. Employees want to know they are making a meaningful contribution to their organizations success. Its up to senior leaders to ensure that employees at all levels can articulate and evaluate their personal roles toward achievement of specific strategic goals. This is perhaps one of the most critical aspects of the execution process. Step 10: Reward performance. In strategy execution, as in any other area of management, what gets measured gets done. Taking this one step further, what get measured and rewarded gets done faster. After explaining the strategy and aligning the workforce to it, senior managers institute the incentives that drive behaviors consistent with the strategy. Strategy execution is difficult in practice for many reasons, but a key impediment to success is that many leaders dont know what strategy execution is or how they should approach it. Homegrown approaches may be incomplete if they fail to incorporate many of the basic activities highlighted above. While the 10-step approach outlined here wont guarantee strategy execution success, it will greatly improve the odds, perhaps pushing the topic down a notch on the list of CEO concerns. Sources: Conference Board Survey of CEOs, Conference Board, 2008. Franken, A., Edwards, C., Lambert, R., Executing Strategic Change: Understanding the Critical Management Elements That Lead to Success. California Management Review, Vol. 41, No. 3, Spring 2009 Bossidy, L., Charan, R., Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done, Crown Business, 2002. Kaplan, R., Norton, D., The Execution Premium: Linking Strategy to Operations for Competitive Advantage, Harvard Business Press, 2008. Kaplan, R., Norton, D., Strategy Maps. Converting Intangible Assets Into Tangible Business Outcomes Advantage, Harvard Business Press, 2004. Porter, M. What Is Strategy? Harvard Business Review (November-December) 1996. Neely, A., et al., The Performance Prism, Financial Times, 2002.

About the Author(s)


Ed Barrows Ed Barrows is an active management researcher and lecturer at Babson College and Boston College as well as a strategy and performance coach. He is also a highly rated AMA course leader in the areas of strategic planning and strategy execution. For more information visit, www.edbarrows.com

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The strategy formulation process is much different than the strategy execution phase. Strategy formulation is heavy on analysis and the soliciting the input of various experts in the market, financial, process, resource, and logistical areas. Once the strategic plan in place, we can set up and activate the strategy execution systems to ensure success of implementation of the strategy. If there is not an adequate strategic plan in place, we can work with you to formulate and implement a long term strategic plan. In order to create your strategy we offer value analysis consulting that, when used in combination with our value engineering tool, determines the type of strategy that is necessary to focus on. We then work with you in implementing that strategy. Our consultants work with you to map your strategy. We do this by determining the following: What is your long term and short term strategy? What performance measurements do you need to track?

What are the questions you need to ask (what do you need to know and from whom do you need to know it?) in order to properly manage your strategy? What are your goals and objectives?

We can also identify and analyze possible scenarios with ScenarioMap in order to do some pre-planning and to safeguard against problems in the future. The following list indicates how the products apply to the strategy formulation process: Refocus Refocus is a software package specifically designed for performing value improvement projects on products, services, and processes. Our consultants use Refocus to guide teams through the process of executing a value analysis for process and product improvement. An implementation plan can be put in place where a consultant can help facilitate your project. StrategyMap Our StrategyMap product is used in the process of mapping your strategy. The consultant can help at this level by gathering pertinent information such as: a. What is your short/long term strategy? b. What are your performance measurements? c. What questions do you need to ask in order to manage properly? d. What are your goals and objectives? ScenarioMap ScenarioMap is a product that, when used in conjunction with our consulting, helps in the preplanning and

mapping of

There are many reasons why management would like to hire people internally, or from peope who are currently employed by the company who wish to transfer into other departments and/or work on other positions. If you are deciding on whether to hire from inside or outside the company, here are the advantages and disadvantages of hiring internally:

Advantages. This type of recruitment is faster and more cost-efficient. This is because employee records are already available in file. All the human resources people will have to do is update the records. Another advantage is that employees hired internally would no longer need to be oriented on the companys mission and policie. Training could be focused on the skills and processes of the new job.

Internal recruitment also tells employees that the company is open to professional growth and changes. This will then result to increased loyalty.

Disadvantages. Enforcing mostly internal recruitment would not encourage new innovations in the company. People who have worked long in the company, might have already developed groupthinking and this usually results to stagnation. External hiring usually brings in fresh blood who in turn can introuduce innovations and new ideas. This is also the same for skills. New people can also introduce new technology, techniques and methodologies which can be advantageous to companies. Another disadvantage is that your choices for candidates are limited. This can cause problems if no one in the company is qualified enough for the new position.
scenarios in order to safeguard against future problems.