Training News

  • “T” versus “π” Approaches to Career Building
    Excerpt from “Mindshift: Break Through Obstacles to Learning and Discover Your Hidden Potential” by Barbara Oakley, Ph.D. (TarcherPerigee, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC; (© 2017 by Barbara Oakley).Article Author: Barbara Oakley, Ph.D.Traditionally, career development has been thought of as having a T-shaped trajectory. A person trains to acquire one in-depth area of expertise, be it accounting, mechanical engineering, or 20th century British literature. This deep expertise then was balanced by a variety of other, lesser “horizontal” skills—computer abilities, people skills, a hobby in woodworking. Patrick Tay, however, has done much to help Singapore grapple in creative new ways with career resilience. A member of Singapore’s Parliament, as well as an influential figure in the National Trades Union Congress, Tay began lobbying several years ago for what he calls a π-shaped approach to career building—two areas of deep knowledge, balanced by a modicum of knowledge and ability in other areas. In... Read more »
  • Diversity in Small Spaces Can Equal Greater Success
    Author: By Margery WeinsteinAs I sit, often angrily, in a small space, with a boss I don’t like practically sitting on top of me, I have reason to feel heartened. History shows that when people with huge differences are forced to share small spaces, great things can happen. I was reminded of that last week by an article in the Daily Beast: “Why Jersey City Missed Out On Being the Big Apple” by Marc J. Dunkelman. I haven’t felt the magic yet, but I’m holding out hope. Dunkelman notes that one of the reasons for Manhattan’s success is the diversity of people from different ethnic groups and backgrounds crammed into a very small space. Anyone who’s visited New York City can testify that it’s crowded, and crowded with many different people—of all different races and cultures. It’s gotten so crowded in recent years that some of us even feel anxious at times for... Read more »
  • Retaining Top Talent
    Adapted with permission from “THE LEADING BRAIN: Powerful Science-Based Strategies for Achieving Peak Performance” by Friederike Fabritius, M.S., and Hans W. Hagemann, Ph.D. © 2017 by Friederike Fabritius and Hans W. Hagemann. (TarcherPerigee, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC, 2017).Article Author: Friederike Fabritius, M.S. and Hans W. Hagemann, Ph.D.“Brains are like hearts,” said Robert McNamara, former business executive and U.S. secretary of defense, “they go where they are appreciated.” Once you’ve assembled a team of experts, it is essential to keep them happy, productive, motivated, and, above all, appreciated. You can do this by promoting a brain-friendly environment and by providing meaningful incentives. Creating a Brain-Friendly Environment The protection factors that ensure emotional resilience and regulation and the diversity that is key to a groundbreaking, innovative collaboration come together in a workplace environment that supports the members of your team as a team while accommodating the individual differences that make them unique... Read more »
  • 4 Key Factors Contributing to the Increasing Complexity of Change
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    Change can be enticing, liberating, galvanizing, promising, and/or rejuvenating for those with an accommodative mindset. On the other hand, it also can trigger feelings of foreboding, vulnerability, intimidation, unjustness, and/or retribution for those with an apprehensive disposition.Article Author: By Murad S. MirzaWe are living in the new age of “wonder” where astute questions put us on the path of fascinating possibilities through the allure of utopian manifestations coupled with the sinister beckoning of dystopian outcomes. This dilemma of harvesting rich rewards while balancing the odds of marginalization/capitulation against the inevitable creation of the technological singularity (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technological_singularity) makes the prospect of change enticing, as well as ominous, in the inherently agile digital world. Change is no longer interpreted in terms of being gradual, steady, progressive, or linear; rather, the defining terminology revolves around the lexicon of hyper-fast, disruptive, transformative, or non-linear. Consequently, the rules that traditionally have tried to encapsulate the phenomenon... Read more »
  • Increasing Women in Leadership Roles
    Stop focusing on the numbers. Instead, critically evaluate and modify your recruitment and promotion strategies for promising female leaders.Article Author: Christie Garton, Founder, 1,000 Dreams FundWe’ve seen significant strides in overall workplace gender equality. That’s the good news. The bad news is that there is less significant progress in diversifying senior-level positions in recent years. There is a disconnect between giving women a seat at the table and allowing them to actually lead the discussion. This does not bode well for the bottom line either. According to a Grant Thornton study, the United States, India, and England are losing out on $665 billion in profits by not having women executives. My nonprofit, 1,000 Dreams Fund, works closely with young women who are at the early stages of pursuing their professional goals. They are budding leaders with much to offer the corporate world, but even once they get that famous foot in the... Read more »
  • Training Top 125 Best Practice: Empire Wealth Strategies’ Pathways Internship Program
    The 10-week internship is designed to provide “rising college seniors” with a well-structured and experential program to learn about becoming a financial advisor. Article Author: Edited by Lorri FreifeldFinancial advisory firm Empire Wealth Strategies’ Pathways Internship Program is a 10-week internship designed to provide “rising college seniors” with a well-structured and experential program to learn about becoming a financial advisor. Program Details The program consists of conducting market surveys, working alongside advisors, classroom training, weekly roundtables, special projects, and taking the licensing exam within a highly interactive and intense learning experience. A dedicated member of the leadership team oversees the interns’ progress and development.  Results Eleven interns have participated in this program since its inaugural launch in the summer 2015. Results include a postive reputation among the colleges Empire Wealth Strategies targets—it has seen a 200 percent increase in internship applications and strong word-of-mouth among its targeted schools. This increased flow of candidates has allowed... Read more »
  • Living Above the Waterline: A Model for Mindful Leadership in Challenging Times
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    Excerpt from “The Thriver’s Edge: Seven Keys to Transform the Way You Live, Love, and Lead” by Donna Stoneham, Ph.D. (She Writes Press, 2015, pp. 131-134).Article Author: By Donna Stoneham, Ph.D.We are living in challenging times. In our work training, coaching, and developing people, it’s more critical than ever that we use models to help those we serve manage their mindset so they can deal effectively with the complexities and challenges of our times, regardless of whether they are leaders or individual contributors. In my work with several thousand Fortune 500 leaders, teams and executives as an executive coach and transformational leadership consultant over the years, one of the models I’ve used to help people become more accountable for their contributions is what I call “Operating Above the Waterline.” Here is an excerpt from my recent book, “The Thriver’s Edge: Seven Keys to Transform the Way You Live, Love and Lead”... Read more »
  • How to Manage a Boss Who Doesn’t Provide Clear Expectations
    Questions your manager should be asking and the questions you need to be answering in dialogue with your boss.Article Author: Bruce Tulgan, Founder and CEO, RainmakerThinking, Inc.If you are working with a boss who has a hard time spelling out expectations in clear, specific detail, then you might need to help him or her out. Many bosses follow a “facilitative approach”; that is, they have been taught it is better to ask employees questions to lead them to the right answers rather than being directive. Unfortunately, the three most common questions managers ask their employees are exactly the wrong questions: “How is everything going?” “Is everything on track?” “Are there any problems I should know about?” These questions take you nowhere, because they are not specific enough. Indeed, the conversations between bosses and employees should be an interactive dialogue. But they should never turn into guessing games. If your boss is going to try to... Read more »
  • When Training Helps the Company, But Not Employees
    Author: By Margery WeinsteinFull disclosure: I’ve never been a fan of Walmart. It’s not best to begin with a negative sentiment, but I wanted to provide the disclaimer that when I saw an article on Walmart’s employee training program in The New York Times, I was already primed not to be impressed. I appreciate the low prices, but the crowds and chaos often found in the Walmart stores I visited gave me a headache, and I thought it was sad that to keep prices low, the company had to source products of an inferior quality and maybe made overseas under labor conditions many Americans would not be comfortable with. That said, I did once in a while spend money there. When I lived in Gainesville, FL, it was my go-to place to get duplicates of keys made. I would cringe and resort to tunnel vision as I handed my key over a... Read more »
  • How to Connect with Millennials During Training
    Excerpt from “Not Just Talent: The Millennials Redefining Talent & Human Capital Management” by Philipe Bruce (January 2017).Article Author: Philipe BruceJust a couple of years ago, asking seasoned professionals or Generation Xers to be led by someone half their age was met with disgust, disbelief, and, of course, outrage. Who really wants to follow someone who has little to no experience in the job market? However, that disgust is changing to a grudging respect for a generation that has gone above and beyond the call of duty in a bid to make an impact on their chosen fields. We are, of course, talking about Millennials here. Many organizations around the globe have realized that this generation has a core set of skills that previous ones refuse to or cannot adopt. Those skills are tantamount in adapting to a world that has become dependent on changing tech and work practices that rely on... Read more »
  • Training Insights Episode 10: No Ego
    Reality-Based Leadership President Cy Wakeman reveals how to drop the drama in the workplace.Author: By Kevin McGowanEpisode 10 of this podcast series, produced by Ottawa-based writer/audio producer Kevin McGowan in partnership with Training magazine, features a chat with Cy Wakeman, president of Reality-Based Leadership. She has a new book called “No Ego” coming out in September 2017. It’s all about how to drop the drama in the workplace and focus on accountability instead.  Click below to listen to Episode 10: No Ego This podcast series includes one-on-one interviews with fascinating people in the training/learning and development world. The podcasts focus on training technologies, projects, career paths, and more. They aim to provide listeners with a unique view into training and knowledge development. To contact Kevin McGowan with feedback or podcast interview suggestions, visit www.kevinmcgowan.ca or https://twitter.com/kevinsmcgowan ... Read more »
  • Want Leaders to Improve? Make It Their Idea!
    One of the most frustrating challenges in leadership development is getting leaders to take their insights from learning or feedback or experience and actually change for the better. One breakthrough solution: engaging leaders themselves in deciding exactly how they will change.Article Author: Anne-Marie Converse, Consultant, Lifelong Leadership DevelopmentPeople do not like to be told what to do. This declaration is based on three decades of experience trying to get people to do what I want them to do. If you’ve ever given advice to a teenager, or pitched a new idea to your boss, or proposed any kind of change at a meeting, or suggested to a colleague a better way of doing a task, you may know what I am talking about. Put another way, people prefer their own ideas. A Chinese proverb says it best: “Ideas are like children. There are none so precious as our own.” Thus we ignore, challenge,... Read more »
  • Creating a Continuous Learning Culture
    Continuous learning is best practiced in a culture that encourages daily rituals that personalize the process of reviewing what you’ve done, and then planning incremental improvements.Article Author: Don RiggenbachMost organizations continue to embrace the process called continuous learning, but managers complain that getting buy-in is an ongoing challenge. One possible reason for the lackluster response: too much procedure, not enough personal engagement. As a young newspaper reporter, I had the good luck to work with news editor James C. West, who later became the longtime and esteemed news editor of Oil & Gas Journal. Every afternoon, as the final edition of our newspaper began rolling off the press, Jim would grab two copies and say, “Let’s go.” Across the street at the Greyhound bus depot, we’d sip stale coffee and examine the day’s efforts. At first I was timid about the process, reluctant to criticize Jim’s headlines and page layouts, and flinching at... Read more »
  • Training Top 125 Best Practice: Dollar General’s Recruiting Management System
    On day one of the system launch, store managers hired more than 600 candidates in the first four hours. The retailer attributes this record-setting result to the training provided. Article Author: Edited by Lorri FreifeldRetailer Dollar General realized it needed to revamp its Recruiting Management System (RMS) to support its future planned growth, including opening more than 900 stores and a distribution center in 2016. The old system was not flexible, used the same application for all candidates (executive to entry level), and did not allow for the 13,000-plus store managers to view applicants beyond their own store, leaving a gap between candidate supply and hiring demand. In addition, the system was not mobile enabled and not optimized for meeting the requirements of today’s job seeker. In fall 2015, a project team consisting of key business leaders, system experts, the vice president of Talent Management, and the senior director of Training and... Read more »
  • Turbulence Is an Opportunity, Not a Threat
    This article was adapted from “21 Success Sutras for CEOs” by Professor M.S. Rao.Article Author: Professor M.S. Rao, Ph.D.“When the going gets tough, the tough get going.” —Joseph Kennedy When you look at leaders such as Winston Churchill, Abraham Lincoln, Boris Yeltsin, and Rudy Giuliani, the common thread connecting them is that they led with a cool and calm demeanor and overcame turbulent times. Winston Churchill was a wartime hero who led his country to victory during the World War II. Abraham Lincoln was the president at a crucial time in American history, when he had to work for the unity of the country and against slavery at the same time. Boris Yeltsin handled an army coup successfully by facing it head-on. Rudy Giuliani, as the mayor of New York, handled the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks. These leaders remained calm during the crisis and set an example for others to follow.... Read more »
  • August 2017’s Top Reads
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    In partnership with getAbstract, Training brings you August’s top three business books recommended to our readers.Article Author: By getAbstract     More than 11,000 business books are published every year—an overwhelming choice for busy professionals. Therefore, in partnership with getAbstract, Training brings you August’s top three business books recommended to our readers. “Stop Guessing. The 9 Behaviors of Great Problem Solvers” by Nat Greene (Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc., 2017, 145 pages, ISBN: 9781626569867; $19.95) Consultant Nat Greene shows you how to address difficult issues and solve tough problems by using nine strategic problem-solving behaviors. He says you should stop guessing and learn how to “smell” problems. Other steps can help, such as acknowledging your ignorance and making sure you are defining the problem accurately. Greene urges delving into the science behind a problematic system, shooting for simple solutions, making choices based on solid factual evidence and staying on target until you unravel the knot. He provides many... Read more »
  • Importance of Work-Life Balance
    Work-life balance doesn’t just happen. You have to make it happen. So think of your day and picture when you can squeeze in even just a little “me” time.Article Author: Joy Marlinga, Operations Coordinator, Oculus TrainingWe all hear how important work-life balance is these days and the wonderful benefits that go along with it. Some people do well at setting boundaries to ensure they get enough time to do the things they love. Most of us, however, get caught up in the pattern of saying to ourselves, “Just one more e-mail” or “Just 10 more minutes,” and before we know it, it’s 8 p.m. because we just couldn’t stop repeating those phrases over and over again. Now, we’re tired, hungry, and think “there isn’t enough time for anything else tonight, so I’m just going to go home and go straight to bed.” What’s even worse is the fact that many young adults... Read more »
  • We Can Put an End to the Boring Presentation
    Start by taking cues from the place that still effortlessly captivates us, even for hours: the movies. Article Author: Ted Frank, Principal Story Strategist, Backstories StudioHave you heard that our attention spans are now shorter than that of a goldfish? According to researchers at Microsoft, a goldfish can pay attention for nine seconds, but us, only eight. Ask any senior manager who spends his or her day in conference rooms and you’ll hear why: Presentations are now an endless parade of charts. With literally hundreds a day, trying to absorb and remember the key points takes a huge toll. It’s part of why so many execs are burned out and why so many great insights and ideas end up going nowhere. But what if there were a way for Learning and Development (L&D) to help employees raise their presentation game and turn this barrage of charts into a form much easier for senior... Read more »
  • The Evolution of a Corporate Trainer (Part 1 of 4)
    A first-person account of starting as an entry-level trainer with little knowledge about being a company trainer to one who wanted to change things for the better.Article Author: Alan Landers, CEO, FirstStep Communications, LLC, and President, FirstStep OD & TrainingI’ve been catching up on my reading recently, and something struck me: Who is writing for the average entry-level trainer? Most of the articles I read are for mid- to high-level Learning and Development (L&D) or HR professionals. I’ve decided to devote a few articles to those of you who are or who manage entry-level trainers. This first in the series is a recollection of my start in the profession and how I grew from a novice with little knowledge about being a company trainer to one who wanted to change things for the better. It’s first person, personal. I hope you don’t mind. The First Training Job I remember when I was fresh out... Read more »
  • Respect Your People
    Excerpt from Chapter Five of “The Leadership Secrets of Hamilton” by Gordon Leidner (sourcebooks, February 2017).Article Author: Gordon Leidner“I would sooner chop off my right hand than put it to the constitution as it now stands.” —George Mason This quote by Founding Father George Mason illustrates the bitter debate that took place among both Founders and followers over the acceptance and ratification of the U.S. Constitution. George Mason, who had authored the Virginia Declaration of Rights in June 1776, believed that the delegates of the U.S. Constitutional Convention were making a huge mistake in the fall of 1787. He believed the Constitution they had written granted too much power to the federal government and did not sufficiently guarantee the rights of the people. Only four years prior to this Constitutional Convention, the nation had barely survived a bitter war of revolution, which Americans had entered into because of their anger toward the British... Read more »