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7 Types of Team Training Programs

If you had a way to develop and improve your company's products or services, would you invest in it? Of course you would. 

But are you doing the same with your teams' training programs? 

Ben Franklin said knowledge investment pays the best interest. A modern analogy could well be that knowledge investment in your teams pays the best interest for your business wellbeing.

Many businesses neglect to provide much in the way of training, despite a wealth of data showing the many benefits companies receive by offering different types of training for their teams. 

The Importance of Different Types of Training Programs

People are a vital asset to any business; however, many companies miss this critical investment opportunity despite copious data indicating that worker investment is crucial for business growth and staff retention.

There are three compelling reasons you should invest in different types of training programs:

  • Increasing your business profitability 
  • Improving your employee retention rate
  • Closing your skill gaps

Investing in your teams is an investment in your business and its growth. 

Increasing Your Business Profitability 

Perhaps you feel you invest a lot in your team members already. After all, you pay salary, benefits, etc. 

However, adding different training programs can increase your company's profitability. Just as you invest in better products or services, investing in the human capital of your business also makes sense.   

Improving Your Retention Rate

Workers who don't receive formal training and development have lower job satisfaction and are less likely to stay. A 2019 report by LinkedIn found an overwhelming 94% of employees surveyed say they would last longer with a company that invested in their learning. 

In study after study, including notable work by Gallup, Gen Z and Millenials (who will make up 75% of the workforce by 2025) say they don't stay longer in positions because of the lack of learning and growth opportunities. It's clear that teams want opportunities for training, and many feel they aren't getting them.

Solving Your Skill Gap Problem

Many businesses lament that they can't find employees with the right skills despite the sheer number of job seekers in the market in recent years. This phenomenon is widely known as the skill gap. However, the skill gap is solvable by investing in various types of employee training. 

If you have trouble finding the ideal skillset in new workers, why not train your existing employees with the skills you need for your business growth? It will pay off! 

The Importance of Leadership Buy-In for Training

Leadership buy-in—or the lack of it—dramatically affects how effective all types of team training are. As with any strategy for your business, if your leadership isn't behind it, it will lose effectiveness. 

Also, leadership buy-in increases program accountability and establishes expectations. Most importantly, it encourages employee engagement. When you set up different types of employee training programs, you want your employees and leaders committed and engaged.   

7 Types of Team Training

You know the importance of implementing different employee training programs, so what types of employee training are the best focus for your efforts?

There are seven types of team training you should consider:

  1. Onboarding 
  2. Technical skills 
  3. Product or service training 
  4. Soft skills 
  5. Anti-bias and diversity training
  6. Compliance training 
  7. Managerial and leadership skills 

Let's take a closer look at these seven types of employee training.

1. Onboarding 

While orientation is undoubtedly an opportunity to impress company values, structure, and policies on recruits, onboard training is your first significant opportunity to train. While orientations generally last a few hours, onboarding can last for months. 

It takes time to introduce new workers to the relevant hardware, software, and tasks they need in their roles. Onboarding is also when newbies mesh with the team and learn company culture. Effective onboarding translates into higher productivity and better retention.  

You can incorporate some of the following types of training into onboarding, but you should still focus on them as separate, ongoing training. 

2. Technical skills 

You may hire people with specific technical skills, but it is still wise to include specialized training to improve those skills and add new ones. Technical skills include operating systems, software applications, and specific machines or devices internal to your company. 

Your team members and business will only benefit from having better-skilled workers. 

3. Product or service training 

Whether online or in a store, if customers ask questions about your business products or services, your teams should be able to provide a knowledgeable, straightforward answer. Customers go elsewhere if they can't get satisfactory answers. 

Product knowledge training and specific service training are essential. They give workers critical knowledge and confidence about their jobs and help them provide customers with better answers. 

4. Soft skills 

Soft skills are just as critical as hard or technical skills but are often overlooked or dismissed, a grave mistake. Soft skills make relationships within your company and with your customers better. Soft skills include but aren't limited to:

  • Listening 
  • Public speaking
  • Communication 
  • Teamwork
  • Adaptability

Soft skills also help you build a working company culture. 

5. Anti-Bias and diversity training

Anti-bias and diversity training are essential to include as a type of employee training. Every team member should feel empowered and accepted, or you won't be helping anyone, including yourself. 

A surprising amount of bias is unconscious or implicit, so your team must understand why anti-bias and diversity training is essential. Companies with more gender diversity outperform the competition by 15%, and in companies with ethnic diversity, outperformance jumps to 35%. 

What would that mean for your business?

You don't want to lose talent because people feel isolated and unwelcome; instead, your business needs a strong, communicative, cohesive, collaborative team. Anti-bias and diversity training helps build this environment.

6. Compliance training 

Compliance training should be more than just handing your employees a handbook.  

Your teams may be legally required to complete specific training depending on your industry. 

Examples include various licenses, accreditation, and certificates. Compliance training, including ethics, will ensure your employees understand the relevant laws, policies, and internal regulations. 

7. Managerial and leadership skills

Remember to mandate training for your leadership. Almost everyone has one bad manager or leader story, and too many people have too many bad stories. 

Bad managerial leadership drains employees' morale, productivity, and motivation, and many employees leave managers, not companies. 

Your managers need to be influential leaders because they set the tone for company culture and accountability. Good leaders bring out the best in your team members, and as a result, motivation, retention, and productivity all go up. 

Good managerial leadership can be learned, practiced, and perfected. Good leaders aren't magically born; they're trained. Invest in leadership training for managers and leaders at all levels of your company. 

Develop a Training Manual That Works

Download your 6-step customizable training manual template.

Make Training Engaging 

The quality of the types of training you create matters. Just as everyone has at least one lousy manager horror story, practically everyone has had boring training that checks a box more than providing substance. Despite their ineffectiveness and unpopularity, unengaging training and "death by PowerPoint" are still common. 

Training should include clear goals, objectives, and measurable outcomes. When your leaders and team members get training, they should understand why and what they should be getting out of it. 

There are many ways to deliver training. Some of the better options include: 

Creating a learning culture in your business will keep your employees engaged and lead to better business performance. Remember, your leaders set the tone for learning. 

Creating Different Types of Employee Training Programs 

Regardless of the type of employee training programs you develop, you'll need buy-in from your leadership and the employees. One way to do this is to survey your team and determine what kind of training they would find beneficial. 

Flexible and tailored training

While some training topics are necessary, you also have flexibility. Having flexible and specific training takes more effort, but it also sows better returns. Training should evolve to keep up with new information and needs.

Your employees learn differently, and they need different types of training, although there will be overlap. For example, your human resource team, a recruit, and a veteran employee may all need soft skills training, but they also require different types of training tailored to their respective roles. 

Meet the needs of your business

The content of employee training should also reflect your business needs and strategies. For example, sales and customer service training are essential if you're in sales. 

Cross-training is also beneficial. If employees better understand their teammates' roles and responsibilities, it helps them work together. 

If you're ready to start implementing different types of employee training programs to better your business, find an online learning platform that has everything you need to help you centralize learning, create compelling content, and measure the success of your training. 

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