Training News

  • Nurture Possibility Thinking to Unlock the Best in Your People and Organization
    When business leaders make it safe for their people to be themselves and share their ideas without fear, they will be overwhelmed with the unexpected brilliance that emerges from their workforce.Article Author: Andy Lothian, Chief Executive Officer, Insights Learning and Development As we develop from children to adults, our lives present new responsibilities and challenges that increasingly call on our critical thinking skills. While this is a natural part of growing up, it also means that as we move through life, we often tend to exercise logical, “left-brain” thinking much more than our more creative, “right-brain” thinking. Pablo Picasso referred to this dynamic when he said, “Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.” For individuals, teams, leaders, and organizations, harnessing the power of possibility can unblock systemic complexity, overcome stubborn obstacles, and often generate brand new business opportunities. As Picasso acknowledged, the... Read more »
  • Playing Chess with the Enemy: A Guide to Creating and Implementing Red Teams in Organizations
    For centuries, rulers and military commanders have been faced with the same question: If I do x, what will my opponent do? Red Teaming can help answer this question by providing a unique opportunity to test a strategy prior to actually engaging with a competitor.Article Author: By Keith PriceImagine you have spent the last month developing a marketing proposal for your company and you are certain this one is sure to succeed. While you are certain of the benefit of this proposal for your company, you hope your proposal will be well received by your superiors. While you are preparing to present your proposal, you mentally run through a list of hypothetical questions you may be asked: How much will this cost? What is the return on investment? Have we considered other options? You feel confident you can handle all the questions that come at you, except for one: What will... Read more »
  • Training Top 125 Best Practice: Dominon Enterprises’ Cyber Hero Bootcamp
    The Cyber Hero Boot Camp includes online, self-paced courses around phishing, social engineering, and helping employees understand their role in and responsibility for avoiding e-mail scams.Article Author: Edited by Lorri Freifeld Businesses worldwide have lost more than $1.2 billion in business due to e-mail scams, according to FBI reports. After experiencing this firsthand, marketing services company Dominion Enterprises focused on training its employees to prevent them from succumbing to such scams. In 2016, Dominion Enterprises (DE) expanded its single Phishing course (launched in 2015) to a comprehensive Cyber Hero Boot Camp learning path. Program Details Before building the courses internally, DE’s IT Support director evaluated vendor offerings. The cost to train employees was estimated at $18,000 per year. The vendor training was more generic and impersonal compared to internally developed courses, which use real DE examples and are targeted toward the organization’s employees. These courses provide real-world examples to help employees discern red flags... Read more »
  • Get Into a Better Position to Earn More Generous Work Rewards
    Look out for tough assignments and roles that are hard to fill. This is your big chance to prove yourself and build up a significant positive balance in your management relationship account.Article Author: Bruce Tulgan, Founder and CEO, RainmakerThinking, Inc. If you want to get into a better position to earn more generous rewards at work, where do you begin? Step 1: Make sure that in your working relationship with each boss, you understand not only how to meet the basic expectations of the job, but how to go above and beyond those expectations—and what rewards might be available if you do. Step 2: Through open communication and transparency, build a working relationship of trust and confidence with your boss, so you know exactly what you have to do to earn rewards, no matter how great or small those rewards might be. Help your boss monitor, measure, and document your performance every step... Read more »
  • 4 Ways to Improve Employee Retention
    Forward-thinking companies use their benefits programs to set themselves apart as employers, adapting their approach to meet employee needs.Article Author: Chris Bruce, Co-Founder and Managing Director, Thomsons Online Benefits There’s no doubt the employment landscape has changed, with people prepared to move jobs more frequently, particularly among younger generations. Deloitte’s 2017 Millennial Survey found that 38 percent of Millennials expect to change jobs within the next two years, while 92 percent of employers anticipate an increase in competition for talent. In light of this, employers have to fight harder than ever to attract and retain the best people. The most forward-thinking companies use their benefits programs to set themselves apart as employers, adapting their approach to meet employee needs. We recently undertook our annual Global Employee Benefts Watch research—an extensive global study into benefits and rewards best practices, and the findings reveal how sophisticated employers are standing out from the crowd and... Read more »
  • What Holiday Parties Can Teach You About Your Employees
    Author: By Margery Weinstein A holiday party can be a microcosm of everything that’s right—or wrong—with each work group’s dynamics. Notice the bully dominating every conversation, cutting off the meeker members from participating, and notice the personality clashes between the more aggressive, less-sensitive team members and those with gentler temperaments. This year, holiday parties are getting closer scrutiny amid the sexual harassment epidemic sweeping the country. An article in The New York Times noted the change in holiday party tone, and pointed out this probably is not the year to get drunk and tell off the boss (if it’s ever the year for that). In years past, with so much merriment, a boss might have just laughed it off as a joke, or as drunken rambling. But this year, the article surmises, a more somber tone is prevailing. At least one company described in the article, Vox Media, whose editorial director was... Read more »
  • How Training Professionals Get a Seat at the Table
    Two important dynamics necessary to achieve this coveted status: being able to appreciate the “big picture” and understanding how and where you add strategic value.Article Author: By Dr. George Watts, Chairman, and Laurie Blazek, President and CEO, Top Line Talent Senior-level training positions are more gratifying when you’re considered a valued C- suite partner. Having a seat at the table means training is regarded as strategic, not tactical. This article discusses two important dynamics necessary to achieve this coveted status. The first is being able to appreciate the “big picture.” The second is understanding how and where you add strategic value. Training, first and foremost, is a business transaction. Business transactions are graphically depicted below in our five-phase transaction cycle; understand this model and you’ll easily grasp the big picture. As we describe each phase of the transaction, it will become clear that each phase requires unique personality strengths to complete. Once... Read more »
  • Leadership Excellence for the Digital Age
    10 tips for converting possibilities into opportunities.Article Author: n/a Leadership at the helm of progressive organizations is becoming increasingly difficult with the lure of efficiency-driven technology, powered by Artificial Intelligence (AI), significantly impacting the corporate landscape. Consequently, corporations are frantically searching for the elixir to attain/sustain leadership excellence for the digital age to ensure that promising possibilities are converted into gainful opportunities in a timely and effective manner. Here are 10 tips for moving purposefully and robustly in the respective direction: Tip #1 Being a visionary isn’t enough; be a futurist. “We didn’t do anything wrong, but somehow, we lost” was the insightful remark uttered by the then-CEO of Nokia, Stephen Elop, at the press conference for announcing the respective acquisition of Nokia by Microsoft. Nokia achieved the vision of being the global leader, however, it couldn’t capitalize on the future of digital communication due to its excessive inward focus instead of embracing the... Read more »
  • Call for 2018 OLC Presenters
    Training magazine’s 2018 Online Learning Conference (Oct. 8-10, Chicago) Call for Presenters is now OPEN! Article Author: By Staff We invite you to propose speaker sessions, Technology Test Kitchen and eLearning Design demo ideas, and Top Training Videos (TTVs) for Training magazine’s 2018 Online Learning Conference to be held October 8-10, 2018, in Chicago. FINAL SUBMISSION DEADLINE: JANUARY 31, 2018 Follow this link to propose your session/demo/TTV clip. We welcome submissions from in-the-trenches training professionals, consultants, authors and vendors from corporations, academia, nonprofits, government, and the military. ABOUT THE EVENT The Online Learning Conference is brought to you by Training—the industry’s leading magazine and your source for professional development. For more than 50 years, Training magazine has advocated corporate learning and workforce enrichment for business results. Training magazine’s 2018 Online Learning Conference will provide how-to, skill-building content and showcase how innovators are solving business problems for their organizations by leveraging learning technologies to make their learning... Read more »
  • Complexity Kills: 3 High-Impact Ways to Simplify Core Business Operations
    Staying focused on customers and front-line teams will help drive great service and increase customer retention and referrals, and, in doing so, help foster and sustain double-digit growth.Article Author: Jeff Kiesel, CEO, Restaurant Technologies, Inc. As companies grow, complexity seeps further into the business at every level of the operation. Executives experience this in spades as they increase revenues, earnings, market share, employee base, and product or service offerings. Communicating effectively gets harder and “priorities” tend to grow exponentially as each group and department wants to contribute to the company’s success. And, all too often, internally focused issues start to dominate the leader’s dialogue. Amid the chaos that can ensue as a business grows, it’s wise at that tumultuous time to renew your commitment to a customer-centric and front-line-team focus. Complexity is an enemy, and the faster a company grows, the harder it is to eliminate it. Staying focused on customers and... Read more »
  • Training Top 125 Best Practice: Choice Hotels International’s Choice Ideathon
    The Choice Ideathon is a corporate-wide event, where associates are encouraged to submit creative and innovative ideas. It gives participants a unique opportunity to spend time out of their normal work zone and ultimately collaborate with colleagues from across the organization.Article Author: Edited by Lorri Freifeld To cultivate and reinforce its key value of innovation, Choice Hotels International developed and launched the first Choice Ideathon in December 2015. The organization introduced the Ideathon by dropping a flyer on every associate’s workstation—with the tagline, “Everything begins with an idea”—followed by company-wide communications via a variety of modalities. Program Details The Ideathon was a corporate-wide event, where associates were encouraged to submit creative and innovative ideas. There were no strict limitations on topics, and the resulting concepts could be documented in many ways, including usage scenarios, paper design mock-ups, presentation slides, clickable prototypes, or even pixel-perfect mock-ups of future user interfaces. It gave participants a... Read more »
  • Avoid Clinging to the Status Quo: A Case Study on Amazon’s Jeff Bezos
    Adapted from “21 Success Sutras for CEOs” by Professor M.S. Rao, Ph.D.Article Author: Professor M.S. Rao, Ph.D. “If your customer base is aging with you, then eventually you are going to become obsolete or irrelevant. You need to be constantly figuring out who are your new customers and what are you doing to stay forever young.” —Jeff Bezos CEOs must not cling to business models and systems that worked in the past, because what worked in the past and present might not work in the future. Amazon founder and CEO Jeffrey Preston Bezos (Jeff Bezos) long has avoided maintaining the status quo. He is a visionary leader with clarity in his approach to business. He turned selling books online into a multibillion-dollar business that has changed the trend of retailing forever. Let us look at how Jeff Bezos stayed away from the status quo to take Amazon to great heights globally. Jeff... Read more »
  • 3 Strategies for Success in a Skills Gap Era
    Develop a growth mindset and embrace lifelong learning. Be ready to make a career pivot. And take a personal passion to the next level.Article Author: By Shelley Osborne, Head, Learning and Development, UdemyThese are confusing times for American workers, especially those in the early stages of their careers. Automation and globalization are reshaping our jobs, making once-clear career paths murky and uncertain. No one knows exactly what the future holds: which jobs will get replaced by robots or outsourced, what skills will be required for the jobs that remain, or where those jobs will be located geographically, and so on. This is stressful! We saw evidence of this when we surveyed full-time U.S. employees for Udemy’s 2017 Skills Gap Report. Nearly 80 percent of respondents believe there’s a skills gap, yet only a little more than a third say it affects them personally. The prevailing attitude we found is one of self-confidence... Read more »
  • December 2017’s Top Reads
    In partnership with getAbstract, Training brings you December’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 December’s top three business books recommended to our readers. “All the Leader You Can Be. The Science of Achieving Extraordinary Executive Presence” by Suzanne Bates (McGraw-Hill Education, 2016, 304 pages, ISBN: 9781259585777; $30) When most businesspeople try to define “executive presence,” they say, “I know it when I see it!” A formal definition of executive presence might not matter to everyone, but managers stymied in their quest for promotion need to know what to do if their bosses think they lack this crucial quality. Unable to articulate a more concrete reason for blocking your path, bosses likely think, “I can’t promote you because you’re missing a special quality, but I can’t tell... Read more »
  • Constructive Confrontation: The Key to Successful Coaching
    Adapted from “THE MASTER COACH: Leading with Character, Building Connections, and Engaging in Extraordinary Conversations” by Gregg Thompson (SelectBooks, Inc., Copyright (c) 2017 by Gregg Thompson. All rights reserved). Article Author: Gregg Thompson  (Editor’s Note: In this article, the term, “Talent,” refers to the person being coached.) At 25 years old, I was an engineering technologist in an aluminum smelting plant and I had just been made a team leader. Perfect! The world was unfolding exactly as it should. I had worked my tail off on some key projects to earn this promotion. Martin was a senior engineer who had been in the department for more than 30 years. He was what we referred to back then as “potential realized.” Martin and I were not especially close, as it was obvious that he had little political power and that my time could be better spent cultivating more profitable relationships elsewhere. But I will... Read more »
  • The Power to Do the Right Thing
    Give your team the power to please, resolve, and empathize with your customers. The magic should be in their hands, not left for the great, all-knowing, powerful Oz—I mean manager—to come in and save the day.Article Author: Kevin James Saunders Chief Company Culture Director, Oculus Training I recently took a trip to Turkey. What a beautiful place! Full of culture, history, and myriad experiences. Plenty of opportunities to go back in time in this 2,600-year-old city, browse the famous mosques, bazaars, and palaces, while at the same time seeing the future unfold around you with an expansion of the city and its state-of-the-art buildings on the rise. I checked into my hotel and was very excited. I had booked a city view, which would be of the famous Blue Mosque, in one of the Superior rooms. It was going to be a sight to behold. Or so I thought! My bubble... Read more »
  • What Are Your Top Decision-Making Questions?
    Author: By Margery Weinstein When your employees are faced with challenging business decisions—whether to launch a new product, whether to enter a partnership with another company—do you have a protocol you teach to make sure they’ve thought through all of their options? Leadership development is a part of most companies with formal training programs, so I was wondering what teachings you offer in decision-making? Elon Musk, the entrepreneur who launched companies such as PayPal, Solar City, SpaceX, and Tesla, has six essential questions he asks himself, according to Business Insider. He says the first thing to do is ask a question. For me, that would be a question such as: “Why might I want to say, ‘Yes’ to this decision? What are the consequences of saying, ‘Yes’? How much will it mean in needed financial expenditures, how much will be needed in staff resources? What is the potential upshot?” I then would ask the... Read more »
  • Adapting Learning to Deliver Results on a Tight Budget
    High-performance organizations are far more likely to leverage modalities such as videos, social/collaboration tools, mobile learning, and games as part of their learning strategy, according to Brandon Hall Group’s 2017 Training Benchmarking Study.Article Author: By David Wentworth, Principal Learning Analyst, Brandon Hall GroupTraining is often one of an organization’s biggest budget line items. With business needs changing quickly and technology advancing even faster, companies are constantly reevaluating how they spend their training dollars. It also can be difficult to determine just how big the Training function should be related to a company’s size and the industry in which they operate. According to Brandon Hall Group’s 2017 Training Benchmarking Study, actual budget sizes vary widely and depend on numerous factors, the most influential being the sheer size of the organization. Average budget by company size are: Large organizations (5,000-plus employees): $25.8 million Mid-size organizations (500-4,999 employees): $1.1 million Small organizations (Less than 500 employees): $300,000 The data... Read more »
  • Building Company Culture in Times of Upheaval
    3 common initiatives necessary to create and sustain a supportive work environment.Article Author: David Shanklin, Head, Culture Strategy, CultureIQ 2016 was an interesting year for the history books. From poll-defying elections to a barrage of celebrity deaths, the Cubs winning the World Series, and the groundbreaking discovery of an Ebola vaccine, last year was full of ups and downs. In the workplace, the culture often reflects that of the world around us—and right now the volatility feels omnipresent. 2017 has been marked by millions of employees trying to navigate a general sense of unease and opportunity. And leaders and organizations don’t have to play victim to the current climate of uncertainty. Instead, seeking out encouragement from companies that offer examples of the positive impact an intentional culture can have on employees can inspire courses of action that foster alignment and solidarity. When examining top company cultures, from startups to growing businesses, high-performing cultures... Read more »
  • Training Top 125 Best Practice: Buckman Laboratories International, Inc.’s Account Management Program (AMP)
    Topics include Buckman’s sales philosophy, reproducible sales flow, capturing customer expectations, and standard service processes, with practice sessions surrounding asking questions, seeing other perspectives, and getting feedback.Article Author: Edited by Lorri Freifeld The “Buckman Way” of doing business means that sales associates at the specialty chemical company work hard to cultivate a strong relationship with customers. This is key to Buckman’s strategy and the focus of its Account Management Program (AMP) course. Program Details Associates learn to identify customer needs in order to formulate creative solutions that drive results. Topics include Buckman’s sales philosophy, reproducible sales flow, capturing customer expectations, and standard service processes, with practice sessions surrounding asking questions, seeing other perspectives, and getting feedback. Additionally, associates learn about Buckman’s four AMP workshops focusing on problem solving, trial development, account transitioning, and service planning. A cohort of 34 trainers and 15 administrators support a global implementation network. Certification as a trainer requires... Read more »