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Harnessing the Power of Learning & Development: How Employee Training Can Fuel Company Growth

Growth is a top priority for any company. Or is it?

Of course it is!

But what many don’t care to think about is that the growth path isn’t only about sales, marketing, or even the product. The most important resource any company has is the employees themselves. Nope, employees aren’t just a means to an end; they’re an integral part of any successful organization.

And what’s important to employees?

Money up to a certain degree, sure. But that’s not it! Employees likely want career growth, promotion opportunities, and to learn new skills. Some of those skills are learned on the job or from others (perhaps on your enterprise social network), but some are learned from their company’s training options.

Formal and informal training is expected, whether general training or something custom to the organization.

And what department typically handles training, or at least some of it in most organizations?

I hope you said learning & development.

Learning and development can immensely and powerfully impact your company’s success. Investing in employee training and development can seem like a major cost center with no tangible payoff. If that’s your first thought, then you’re absolutely 100% wrong.

Employees won’t work without money, but professional development is nearly as important.

I have no statistics to tell you you’re wrong because it’s hard to pinpoint with statistics. But, ask any successful organization if they have a strong learning culture or if they leave it up to chance.

Sure, learning & development is money you spend without expecting immediate returns. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Harnessing the power of learning and development for employee training helps your business grow faster and motivates employees.

Learning & development is a game changer for any organization since it has the power to transform what your teams are capable of achieving. With the proper training, you can help employees gain new skills, mindsets, and processes that give them the tools they need to excel in their work.

With good training relevant to your employee’s career journey, your teams can work smarter, faster, and more efficiently. Companies with a good learning culture outperform companies without. You can reap the rewards of that investment in employee growth with good training strategies.

What is Learning & Development (L&D)?

Learning and development (L&D) is an integral part of any organization, focused on ensuring employees have the skills, knowledge, and attitude necessary to perform their roles successfully.

Sometimes, it’s not about performing their roles successfully but rather just how to fit into the company culture. Perhaps it could be a specific way of managing or just the different terminology and how things are done.

The core purpose of learning & development is to enable employees to learn skills for their job and career skills.

L&D includes a wide range of activities, from onboarding and technical skills training to leadership development, soft-skills training, and mentoring. It is vital in helping organizations stay competitive by developing a highly skilled workforce and ensuring their employees can use current technologies and tools.

When you’re expected to use a new tool for your job, it’s nice to have training for it. Applications and systems deployed by IT are the type of training we specialize in with our digital training solutions. We even build custom software simulations that help employees learn software and processes with realistic scenarios and in a realistic environment, which is excellent for providing a safe space to learn.

Learning and development go beyond providing employees with the necessary skill set for their job title. Promoting a culture of learning within an organization encourages employees to expand their knowledge and continuously stay updated with changing workplace trends. It also helps reduce help desk calls by giving employees the tools to solve their issues or know how to use technology.

It’s always nice when something like AI comes along trying to take people’s jobs if they have the skills to adjust.

Gif of South Park with guy saying"They took my job."

An actively engaged and well-trained workforce can be critical in driving company growth.

Successful L&D programs help organizations to develop a common language across departments and functions. Training initiatives can be used to ensure that all employees are on the same page regarding new processes and procedures when they go into more complex requirements beyond simple communication such as an email. Consistency can improve team communication, leading to more efficient workflow and better collaboration.

Hopefully you now know what learning and development is all about. It’s pretty complex and has overarching responsibilities that reach every part of the organization. But one thing I know is that employees are happier when they know what the heck they’re doing. L&D makes sure that happens.

The Benefits of Employee Training

By investing in L&D, companies create a motivated and engaged workforce. That means happier workers that, in turn, drive growth.

When employees have opportunities to develop their skills and knowledge, morale and productivity increase. That leads to more efficient operations, improved customer service, and higher customer satisfaction. Companies with effective employee training programs are better positioned to retain staff, reduce turnover rates, and save the organization money, time, and resources.

Do you want to see data for all of these claims?

That can be tricky for some since there are no exact dollar amounts. But then again, many company activities don’t provide benefits in the exact dollar amounts. Most companies invest in IT without precise numbers but rather estimates. Most things in life are estimates unless it’s a sale for an exact amount of money.

But if you can capture how much sales have increased after a training initiative, then that’s a pretty strong case for success.

Here’s one pretty damning piece of information for companies that don’t invest in their employee’s development:

70% of US employees say they’re at least somewhat likely to leave their current company and accept an offer with a new company that’s known for investing in employee learning and development.

PR Newswire

You like to keep your employees, right?

Maybe not, but that’s your decision. I think it’s a pretty important part of a successful organization, and learning & development plays a direct role in employee development most of the time.

Learning and development initiatives can be a powerful tool for companies to foster growth and remain competitive. By investing in employee training, organizations gain a well-equipped workforce with the knowledge and skills to perform their roles successfully, thus paving the way for success.

As you can see, the benefits of investing in employee training and development are plentiful and powerful. The right employee training will be essential to creating the company growth you are striving for.

It can increase the efficiency and productivity of your workforce. By providing your staff with the right knowledge of processes and tools they use in their job, they become more knowledgeable and experienced in their roles. That means it’s easier to get projects done quickly and effectively. This can be especially beneficial in a fast-paced working environment, saving your business time and money.

No more customer service agents fumbling around on their computers trying to navigate a dozen tools they use to do their job!

When employees are well-versed in the latest technologies, it allows for innovation within the workplace. With the right technical and creative skills, your staff can use the newest tools to optimize processes, create innovative products and services, and capitalize on emerging opportunities.

If staff is well trained in their job, they’re going to be a lot happier than if they’re not.

Investing in employee training also helps build morale and employee engagement. Providing them with the tools and resources to advance their skills shows that your company cares about their growth and development. Investing in their professional development leads to happier and more motivated teams.

Who doesn’t love motivated employees and teams ready to make things better!?

Learning and development is one of your company’s growth powerhouses but often goes unrealized. When employees are given access to the right training, companies can gain a competitive edge that keeps them ahead of the competition.

Different Types of Training

Learning and development is all about training, whether formal or informal. It could come down to a library of general training content provided by an external vendor. However, it could also involve custom training solutions built specifically for your organization.

L&D can implement many different types of training to ensure maximum impact on company growth. It’s never a one-size-fits-all approach. Depending on the organization’s goals and needs, there are different ways to achieve the desired outcomes, and often, it’s a blend of many.

On-the-job training is a popular way for employees to understand job roles and tasks. It’s usually done in familiar contexts by having the employee observe or be directly instructed. They typically work under the direct guidance of a more experienced individual. This type of training is highly valued because it allows employees to become familiar with their positions and practice skills directly.

That is, as long as employees aren’t thrown in and expected to sink or swim. That won’t make successful or happy employees.

Types of training varies a lot. L&D has many tools available to help employees develop their skills.

Another form of training is mentorship. This involves assigning a more experienced mentor to assist beginners. Mentors provide coaching and guidance throughout the employees’ learning process, allowing them to ask questions. Mentorship is beneficial since it gives inexperienced employees a better understanding of the organization and how the job works, specifically at the organization.

Even the same job title varies quite a bit from organization to organization.

Digital training is also a popular option including our favorite for scaling training seamlessly. When many people need to be trained, digital training is the ideal solution. It’s also nice that digital training can work around employees’ schedules and allow them to go at their own pace.

Lastly, software simulation is another type of training that allows employees to experience realistic scenarios without the risk of real-world consequences. This will enable employees to practice and hone their skills in a safe and controlled environment. This type of training is beneficial for any skill-based jobs where mistakes could be costly.

These training types are crucial aspects of an organization’s learning & development initiatives. Each type of training contributes to the powerhouse status of L&D.

Different training methods are appropriate for various stages of development and different roles and goals. That makes it essential to tailor the training to suit the organization’s needs and, of course, the goal of the training. Doing so can help maximize their chances of successfully achieving desired outcomes and unlocking growth opportunities as long as they focus on performance rather than vague learning.

Strategies for Boosting Employee Development

Creating a comprehensive learning and development program is a powerful way to ensure your employees learn and advance. With the right strategies, you can effectively boost employee growth and realize immense gains in company productivity. By regularly investing in the development of employees, you can maximize their effectiveness and help your company reach its goals.

To ensure that employee development programs are effective, it’s essential to have a clear understanding of your organization’s objectives. This will allow you to craft a program that will target key areas for improvement and help drive the growth of your organization.

Setting measurable goals for development is a key part of this process. It enables you to track progress and understand the impact of your efforts.

Another key strategy for boosting employee development is focusing on the company culture. Make sure your employees feel valued and appreciated so that they are motivated to learn and grow. In addition, foster an environment where employees are supported and encouraged to take risks and think outside the box.

Tying professional development to business goals helps make them more valuable.

Providing access to training materials and resources is vital for encouraging employee development. Many organizations provide access to LinkedIn Learning and/or Udemy, which both have programs where organizations can subscribe so their employees can access everything they offer.

These are great options for general training that isn’t specific to the organization.

Investing in resources such as online learning platforms and videos can help employees stay updated with industry trends and discover new concepts. Additionally, providing access to experts and mentors can help employees develop specialized skills and gain hands-on experience.

Finally, make sure that you’re rewarding employees for their growth. This can take shape in the form of recognition or tangible rewards, a form of gamification of training. By investing in your employees’ development, you can create a culture of growth in your company and leverage the power that strong organizations rely on from a good learning and development department.

Strategies for Maximizing Learning & Development Results

The culture of learning & development is becoming increasingly entangled within the corporate landscape, and for good reason. Specifically, investing in employee training programs is a powerful tool for not just employee retention but also for driving company growth. There are several things to keep in mind for companies looking to truly harness the power of learning and development for company growth.

First, it’s essential to actively select training opportunities that are relevant and applicable to current business goals and objectives. This requires taking the time to understand the organization’s specific needs and challenges.

Having a clear plan outlining desired outcomes and objectives is also important. This ensures that the investments in learning and development support those outcomes rather than focusing on the wrong things that don’t benefit the organization, which leads to wasted time and money.

A clear plan for L&D that’s linked to the business goals ensures outcomes are valuable to and contribute to growth.

Providing access to relevant and up-to-date information and resources can be extremely helpful for boosting learning & development results. Having access to the most current industry trends, news, and content can ensure that employees are well-informed about trends and changes in the environment. Additionally, offering access to industry experts, courses, and other specialized resources can enhance employee knowledge and help them develop new skills.

It’s important to leverage technology and employ simple solutions that make managing learning and development processes easier. This could involve automating some processes or allowing employees to access materials through digital platforms, freeing up time and resources while streamlining the overall process.

There’s no need to reinvent the wheel. There’s a lot of great learning content that can be repurposed for any organization.

Taking the time to strategically select, design, and support learning & development initiatives can give companies an edge when it comes to investing in their business growth. By taking a proactive approach and leveraging the right tools and resources, companies can harness the power of learning & development and make it an essential driver of growth in your organization.

Measuring the Impact of Employee Training

Measuring the impact of employee training is crucial to determining its success in company growth. By quantifying the cost/benefit and understanding the key performance indicators (KPIs) of training, a company can understand how learning & development contributes to the growth of companies.

When measuring the impact of employee training on a company, employers should determine the planned objectives and expected outcomes before investing in it. Quantifying the anticipated benefit should be one of the primary goals.

This can be done by looking at how much time and resources will be saved by implementing the training and how much money the company will save to avoid potential mishaps due to employees not being adequately trained.

Surveys are a start for measuring training success, but there are many other ways based on available company data.

Organizations should also evaluate the KPIs of the training for company growth. These include the number of employees trained, successful or improved processes, increased productivity, and decreased employee turnover. These KPIs provide organizations with insight into how employee training influences company growth.

Finally, companies should use surveys as a qualitative measure of the impact of employee training on their company. This doesn’t have to be smile sheets either (does this make you happy?) because it’s all in the phrasing. Will Thalheimer has a great book, Performance-Focused Learner Surveys that can help you write better surveys.

Collecting data on the impact of the training is the best way to truly understand its success and measure its influence on the organization’s growth.

Wrap Up

There’s no such thing as a cost center at an organization, including and especially learning & development. Every department costs money, and each department contributes to making money in some way.

Learning & development are positioned to help fuel company growth more than most departments are. That means they can significantly impact company growth more than most. That is, as long as the organization realizes what they have in L&D.

Learning and development are integral components of any successful business. Companies implementing employee training programs see undisputable evidence of how good training contributes massively to company growth.

Training has the potential to increase engagement, morale, productivity, and loyalty, all of which can lead to improved profitability and success. An effective training program provides employees with the knowledge, skills, and abilities needed to fulfill their roles better, ultimately benefiting the entire organization.

While all types of training are essential to your organization, it’s impossible to avoid custom training for the systems used in your organization. We specialize in digital training solutions focusing on building custom training for software and other technology at your company.

We’d love to get to know your company and how we can contribute to your organization’s success, as well as employee efficiency and happiness. Schedule a free consultation so we can discuss how custom training will benefit your project’s success and organization’s growth.

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