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Q1 is a time for resolutions and goals. It won’t be long before we can see which goals provided great results, which of them were simply met for the sake of it, and which failed. Including specific expectations around the role that training plays in achieving these goals can be a great way to increase our chances of success.

This post will look at some simple training tactics that can help to boost the effectiveness of the goals that you set for your team in Q1.

Focus on the Method of Learning

Discussing a plan to learn a new skill when assigning a challenging task to a team member can be a great way to ensure that they have an instructive learning experience and become more self-sufficient. This can be as simple as identifying a subject matter expert to reach out to for help, or listing internal training resources. A little bit of discussion around how you suggest learning a skill can help to carve out some grey area between telling someone to sink or swim, and basically investing your time directly in completing a task or training.

The point is that we’re not simply asking someone to learn a new skill, but we’re discussing with them what resources are available to help them learn.

Take Stress out of the Equation

Stress usually isn’t a great ingredient for a training situation. When asking a team member to teach themselves a challenging new skill, you can help reduce the stress of stepping out of a comfort zone by setting clear expectations that you don’t expect perfect results on the first try. Clarifying that you want someone to give it a shot on their own, and setting up a specific time to check in on progress, is a good way to set someone up for success as they try to learn something challenging. It will also give you an opportunity to provide feedback on what they did, as well as how they went about learning it.

They may have made correctable mistakes in the task itself, but they also may have made mistakes in how they went about trying to learn the task in the first place. Those are both great skills that you can help them sharpen.

Encourage Team Members to Share New Skills

Asking a team member to learn a new skill and bring what they’ve found back to your team can be a great way to add additional motivation and recognition to their task. This not only helps your team member to improve their own skills but also creates a culture of learning within your team. Regularly scheduled training sessions led by your own team members can help to set expectations that learning new skills is a valued priority.