Are you Training your Team Members for the Future?
Why not? What’s getting in your way?
“It’s not the will to win that matters – everyone has that.
It’s the will to prepare to win that matters.”
– Coach Paul “Bear” Bryant
I’ll bet you never thought of yourself as a trainer, but unconsciously you’re training others every day by your example; by what you say and do, and by what you fail to say and do. You thought that training was the responsibility of your employer or Human Resources, Right? Yes, they play a role in training, but so do you.
If you have any desire to consistently produce excellent results and to sustain those results, you need to step up and assume a more active role in the training of your team members. If you’re responsible for their results, you’re responsible for how they achieve those results. So, inherently, you are responsible for the process of achieving those results, and how to make it better.
That’s why this site is so powerful! It’s a compilation of the best in class knowledge, wisdom, and advice on both personal and team effectiveness used by the most effective people we have worked with over the past 50 years.
This site is not intended to replace the On-the-Job-Training (OJT) you are receiving from your employer. Rather, this training is intended to give you Tactics, Techniques, and Tools you’ll need to make you and your team members more effective.
By training and applying the 10 Core Competencies of Effectiveness (including Followership, Delegating, Planning, Organizing, Communicating, Problem-Solving/Decision-Making, Awareness, Training, Motivating, and Character), you’ll achieve a far greater degree of success in a much shorter time.
Without you direct intervention is your training and the training of your teammates, nothing will get any better. It that the way you want it to be? Or, do you want to leave your position better than you found it and to be known as someone who is absolutely essential and irreplaceable to any employer?
Here are a few suggestions to enhance your ability to train your Team Members.
Prepare to WIN!
“I hated every minute of training, but I said, ‘Don’t quit.
Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.”
– Muhammad Ali
Have you ever noticed that just by the time your members learn what they need to learn, which could take a few years, they somehow end up forgetting what they learned or move somewhere else? This is why effective leaders have their own cyclic, focused, and dynamic training program already created. Here’s one way they do it.
Step 1: Identify the Tasks you want your members to Perform
A task is a clearly defined and measurable activity accomplished by individuals and teams. It is the lowest behavioral level in a job or unit that is performed for its own sake.
The most important things to consider when designing each task:
- Must be specific, observable, and measurable
- Usually has a definite beginning and ending
- May support or be supported by other tasks
- Has only one action, therefore, is described using only one verb
- Is generally, performed in a short time
The tasks you want your members to perform should include tasks from these groups:
Group 1: How to create a Document: Includes a Plan of Action, Contingency Plans, Mitigation Plans, Decision Paper, Decision Matrix, Authorization Matrix, Decision Points, Decision Support Templates, Dashboard, and Time table.
Group 2: How to make a Presentation: Includes a Decision Briefing, Backbriefing, Training Session, offer your opinion/assessment, Situation Report, Progress Briefing, Follow up and Follow through, and conduct a Rehearsal.
Group 3: How to conduct a Meeting: Includes Problem-Solving Process, Brainstorming, Risk Assessment, After-Action Review, Quarterly Progress Briefing, Problem Resolution Meeting, and In-Progress Review.
Group 4: Other Skills: Including anticipate problems, lead, plan, organize, resolve conflict, decide, delegate, inspire, motivate, encourage, direct, research, recognize, respond, reprimand, budget, praise, listen, negotiate, coach, provide feedback, improve customer service, schedule, staff a document, collaborate, achieve consensus, track, supervise, Follow through, coordinate, facilitate, inspect, correct, set standards, measure results, make improvements, solve problems and exploit opportunities.
All the key tasks you’ll want your team members to perform are contained within this site. Based on the functions your members perform, which tasks do you want them to master?
Step 2: Determine your Collective Tasks
Are there some tasks that must be performed by more than one person? If so, you have a collective or team task. Collective tasks describe the exact team desired performance under actual operational conditions and are derived from unit goals and assignments. These tasks are normally managed separately from individual tasks and are clearly defined, discrete, and measurable action which requires organized team or unit performance and leads to the accomplishment of a goal or assignment.
Step 3: Determine your Proficiency Cycle
A Proficiency Cycle is how often you want certain skills demonstrated to standard to maintain the desired level of proficiency. Are there some critical skills that you want your members to periodically demonstrate their proficiency (quarterly, semi-annually, or annually) like safety, security, driving, lifesaving, or weapons?
Note: It’s a good idea to create training binders for each team member showing how each task is to be performed and the standard.
Step 4: Create your Learning Objectives
“One doesn’t become a soldier in a week – it takes training, study and discipline.
There is no question that the finest Army in the world is found in the United States.”
– Daniel Inouye
A learning objective is a statement describing what you want a member to be able to do and consists a Terminal and Enabling Learning Objectives.
- Terminal Learning Objectives (TLOs) are the big things normally found in the Job Description and should be determined first with the help of your team
- Enabling Learning Objectives (ELOs) must be performed to satisfy each TLO, are subtasks to TLOs, and have three components: Action, Condition, and Standard (ACS):
Action: Lists the action to be performed (using the appropriate action verb)
Condition: Lists the resources and constraints critical to performance
Standard: Lists the criteria for satisfactory performance (Quantity and Quality) (Go-No Go)
Here’s an example of a Terminal Learning Objective and its Enabling Learning Objectives:
TLO #1: Provide Excellent Customer Service via Help Desk
Provide excellent customer service via the help desk, becomes your Terminal Learning Objective (TLO), right from their Job Description. The Enabling Learning Objectives (ELO) contribute to the accomplishment of this TLO might look like these.
ELO 1: Answer the Help Desk Phone
Answer the Help Desk phone
Given a phone and a phone script
Answer phone before 2rd ring using script (provided separately)
ELO 2: Answer Simple Customer Questions
Answer simple customer questions
Given phone, internal SOP, and simple problem that can be resolved
Answer customer questions completely and courteously and/or redirect their call in less than one minute.
ELO 3: Answer Complex Customer Questions
Answer complex customer questions
Given phone, internal SOP, and a problem you cannot solve in 2 minutes
Answer customer questions completely and courteously. If unable to solve their problem, record their name and phone number and tell them you will call them with an answer. Get back with them with an answer in one hour or less.
Without having an Action, Condition, and Standard, how will your team members know what you want them to do and how well you want it done?
Step 5: Create your Organization & Functions Manual
“My confidence comes from the daily grind – training my butt off day in and day out.
– Hope Solo
Every member of your unit should have their own Organization & Functions Manual (O&F), which consists of either a 3-ring binder or its digital equivalent and includes:
- Their Responsibilities, Expectations, Duties, Constraints, Authority, Projects, and Standards (REDCAPS)
- Organizational charts and diagrams and Standard Operating Procedures
- Rules of Conduct and Ethics and Training Actions, Conditions, and Standards
- Listing of all assignments they are working on
- Formats for standard documents like Decision Papers, the Decision-Making Process, etc.
- User names, passwords, phone numbers, combinations, URLs, etc.
- Operating instructions for all the systems for which they are responsible
- All recurring events (Weekly, monthly, quarterly, semi-annual, annual, etc.)
- Their leader’s Leadership Philosophy
Without having some form of an O&F Manual for your team members, where do you want them to go to find out to above information and what do you intend to use when you are transitioning a new member into your unit?
Step 6: Decide WHEN to Train all your Members
“Starbucks is not an advertiser; people think we are a great marketing company,
but in fact we spend very little money on marketing and more money
on training our people than advertising.”
– Howard Schultz
One of the biggest problems leaders have training their members is finding the time.
Here’s a technique: Schedule your training for every Wednesday
from 1-3 PM and make it mandatory for all.
Mandatory means no one schedules non-emergency medical appointments, travel, or any other voluntary absences during training (except vacation). Next, require that your team members conduct their training on subjects they feel their members need, or to train on a recurring basis (month, quarter, or semi – annual) like this example.
Here’s an example of a Cyclic Unit Training Schedule to help your members keep their skills sharp:
1st of month
Include Consensus Building
Ensure your leader, and his leader, recognize and approve that Wednesday PM is mandatory training time for your unit and not to schedule any activities during this time.
Only if you protect this time will you be able to train your members. If some of your members are routinely on the road during the week, arrange that their training be online and available 24/7.
Other Options: Dental/Medical practices close their offices for a half day per week or per month.
Use the “ADULT TRAINING MODEL”
“The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains.
The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.”
– William Arthur Ward
Effective leaders know that the best way to train their members is by using the Adult Training Model. This model starts with a trainer explaining what task he wants members to perform and how well he wants them to do it – called the standard. Then, the trainer physically demonstrates the task to standard. After that, the trainer lets the member practice and then asks the member to perform the task, as he observes. Then, the trainer provides feedback, encouragement, and retraining, as needed.
Here’s a more detailed look at each phase of the Adult Training Model:
Phase 1: Explaining. Here the trainer explains the task she wants the member to perform and why the task is needed, like to complete a report, to process an order, or to help a client with a problem.
The three components of a task include:
Action: What action must be performed?
Condition: What resources and constraints are critical to their performance?
Standard: The criteria for satisfactory performance, including quantity/quality
Phase 2: Demonstrating. This is where the trainer demonstrates the task to standard.
Phase 3: Practice. This is where the trainer permits the member to practice as much as needed.
Phase 4: Testing. Here the trainer asks the member to perform the task, while she observes. If it’s a written task, she doesn’t have to stand over the trainee while he writes, just review the final product.
Phase 5: Assessing. Then, the trainer provides feedback and encouragement. If the member didn’t perform the task to standard, the trainer provides feedback and encouragement and asks the member to repeat the task (a redo) until the member can complete the task to standard, or move on to the next task. Ensure redoes are as discrete as possible.
Phase 6: Training. Finally, each member now gets the chance to train other members. Effective leaders know that if you truly want to own a skill, you must freely give it away by teaching others.
Adults learn best by doing, not by watching, reading,
or by being shown how to do it!
So, what’s the Big Deal? The biggest problem with training today is the failure to provide a standard of performance and the failure to conduct Phases 4 and 5. If you skip these phases, how do you know if they truly can execute the task you expect them to do? Your members need the feedback that they’ve done the task correctly to standard to build their confidence.
Here’s a true story:
“Joe volunteered for a security detail at a political fund-raising event. Each security person was given instruction as to how to turn on and use the two-way radios they were each provided.
However, no one asked them to do a radio-check or to demonstrate their ability to talk on the radio before they were posted to their positions.
As a result, several radios didn’t work, no one knew how to talk on the radio, which call signs belonged to whom, how to report where they were, or how to respond in the event something happened.”
I used this story to illustrate the value of Phases 4 and 5, the test and assessing, the opportunity to demonstrate that you truly understand and can perform the task to standard. Telling someone isn’t enough. Showing someone is a little better. But, telling, showing, and asking them to perform the task is the only way you’ll ever know that they got it. This is what makes the Adult Training Model far superior to other methods.
Note: You can also train one person in your unit to train the others. This can be a delegated task or long-term additional duty. This technique is called Train-the-Trainer.
Use “ROLE PLAYING”
“What I hear, I forget. What I see, I remember. What I do, I understand.”
Effective leaders know the importance of Role Playing in terms of adding realism to any training situation. Role Playing is a training method used to replicate a real situation by acting out a role, in accordance with the leader’s standards, to assess a member’s behavior in a simulated situation. Role Playing can be used to interview a new hire (what would you do in this situation, train someone how to resolve customer problems, and assess a group’s ability to collaborate and achieve consensus. Your options are limited only by your imagination.
To effectively use Role Play, you’ll need four things:
An Actor: Person presenting the situation
A Trainee: Person responding to the realistic situation
An Enabling Learning Objective (ELO):
Action: An expected and realistic simulated situation or problem
Condition: Actual conditions under which the Action is expected to be performed
Standard: An expected outcome or result – what the leader and organization expect
Feedback: Provided at the end by team members and the leader
A team member is selected at random every week. This training, if conducted every week, will strengthen both the individual and the team. Sometimes the Actor can be the leader. The member’s task is to respond to a simulated situation using common sense and the training and tools he has been provided. And, when you’re finished, you can select anther team members at random to assess the member’s performance before you offer your assessment.
“Bob wanted to enhance his team’s ability to resolve problems on their own without his help. He knew that to be effective, he needed to conduct this training every week, with a different team member as facilitator. He decided to use Role Playing as the method of training.
The first week, Bob gave each team member a copy of the Problem-Solving Process and discussed each step and how it should be used.
The second week, Bob led the first group problem-solving session using a simulated situation.
The third week, Bob selected one member at random to facilitate the team through the process using a simulated situation. At the end of this training session, Bob asked another member at random to assess what happened. Then, Bob offered his assessment.
Every week thereafter, Bob repeated the process until he was satisfied that his team knew what to do. Bob conducted this Role Play exercise every year because this was a critical task for his team.”
You are preparing your team members to become effective today than they were yesterday.
Additional Training Methods:
3 X 5 Cards: Cards can be given to selected members (asking them to do something or to Role Play) during the training session to add realism and make the ELO more challenging.
Group Exercises: The team could be assigned the Action to conduct a Brainstorming Session, to use the Problem-Solving Process, to conduct a meeting (IPR, Problem Resolution Meeting, Quarterly Progress Briefing, etc.), or to collaborate and achieve consensus. The only limitations are your creativity and imagination.
Create the Ideal LEARNING ENVIRONMENT
“One of the main focuses of my training sessions is to help individuals find their unique voices in the learning process. We all have our strengths, our weaknesses, our styles of learning, our personalities. Developing introspective sensitivity to these issues is critical to long-term success.”
– Joshua Waitzkin
Effective leaders apply and train all their members on the 10 Core Competencies of Effectiveness. They create a learning environment where members can feel free to express their opinions, discuss their successes and failures, make mistakes, and to ask questions without fear of ridicule or punishment. Adults learn more from their peers than they will from any other way. And, that’s the way it should be!
What are the Most Important Conditions for an Ideal Learning Environment?
- Confidentiality: What happens in the classroom – stays in the classroom! Every member needs the freedom to make mistakes and to learn from them.
- Inclusiveness: Every attempt should be made to include everyone in all activities because everyone is important. Everyone’s opinion is important.
- Respect: Everyone should be treated with dignity, respect, and kindness, regardless of their age, position, or title.
- Sharing: It is critical for everyone to share their experiences. Members learn more from their peers than they ever will from a web site, book, or from you. We all learn best from our mistakes and the mistakes of others. Always close the lesson by summarizing, “What did we learn today?”
What are the most important Training Warnings?
- Do not scold, embarrass, or demean anyone for any reason. You don’t have to agree with what was said or done. You’re the traffic cop to make sure everyone is civil.
- Avoid being openly judgmental. Your job is to ask questions, rather than making judgments. Become a better active listener drawing out the best from each member. What are you sensing?
- Do not announce or discuss a NO GO in front of other members. You can provide feedback when others are present, but do not tell a member that he received a NO GO in front of others.
- Do not permit personal attacks on another person. Everyone should treat and be treated with dignity, respect, and kindness.
- Do not permit members to mention another person’s name in a negative context.
- In addition to looking for things wrong, look for and praise what was right and good, and how much improvement has been made.
You’re looking for improvement, not perfection!
In the end, this entire experience is designed for all those who want to improve themselves. As the leader, your job is to guide and encourage them to improve with every lesson, without getting in their way!
To be continued: If you’d like to learn more about enhancing your ability to train your team members, you can do so by adding this book to your professional library, today!
YOUR GUIDE TO BETTER TRAINING
Here’s what you’ll learn:
CHAPTER 1: BY UNDERSTANDING YOUR ROLE IN TRAINING
CHAPTER 2: BY SELECTING TEAM MEMBER TASKS
CHAPTER 3: BY CREATING LEARNING OBJECTIVES
CHAPTER 4: BY CREATING YOUR “O & F MANUAL”
CHAPTER 5: BY SELECTING THE BEST TIME TO TRAIN
CHAPTER 6: BY USING THE “ADULT TRAINING MODEL”
CHAPTER 7: BY USING “ROLE PLAY”
CHAPTER 8: BY CREATING A LEARNING ENVIRONMENT
CHAPTER 9: BY CONDUCTING “AFTER ACTION REVIEWS”
CHAPTER 10: BY CREATING MORE EFFECTIVE TEAM MEMBERS
CHAPTER 11: BY POSITIONING MEMBERS FOR EXCELLENCE
CHAPTER 12: BY CONTINUING EDUCATION & TRAINING
CHAPTER 13: BY USING TRAINING FOR CAREER DEVELOPMENT
CHAPTER 14: BY ASSESSING YOUR TRAINING
CHAPTER 15: BY ASSESSING CAREER RESILIENCE
You now have the chance to enhance your career by learning how to become more effective tomorrow than you are today.
Or, you can take advantage of our Special Offer below.
To SAVE 75%, purchase The Effectiveness Guide, which contains all 10 Volumes, instead of buying each volume separately.
Here’s what you’ll learn:
CHAPTER 1: BY BECOMING A BETTER FOLLOWER
CHAPTER 2: BY BECOMING A BETTER DELEGATOR
CHAPTER 3: BY BECOMING A BETTER PLANNER
CHAPTER 4: BY BECOMING A BETTER ORGANIZER
CHAPTER 5: BY BECOMING A BETTER COMMUNICATOR
CHAPTER 6: BY BECOMING A BETTER PROBLEM SOLVER
CHAPTER 7: BY ENHANCING YOUR AWARENESS
CHAPTER 8: BY BECOMING A BETTER TRAINER
CHAPTER 9: BY ENHANCING YOUR ABILITY TO MOTIVATE
CHAPTER 10: BY ENHANCING YOUR CHARACTER
APPENDIX A: PLAN OF ACTION EXAMPLE
APPENDIX B: REAL WORLD PROBLEM SOLVING EXAMPLE
APPENDIX C: ADVANCE PROBLEM SOLVING WITH VUCA
APPENDIX D: CAREER ADVICE
APPENDIX E: CREATING MISSION AND VISION STATEMENTS
The Effectiveness Guide is the best investment you’ll ever make in your career.
Also, if you feel this information could help someone else, please take a few moments to let them know. If it turns out to make a difference in their life, they’ll be forever grateful to you – as will I.
Let’s make a difference together – one person at a time!
All the best!
Founder of TheCAREERMaker.com
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The 10 Core Competencies of Effectiveness
Followership | Delegating | Planning | Organizing | Communicating
Problem-Solving | Awareness | Training | Motivating | Character