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Poll: is training the solution to performance issues?

In a recent poll, members of AHRI’s LinkedIn discussion group were asked whether training is the solution when there are problems with performance.

The 145 survey respondents said that, while training can be effective, management should first understand the context of the problem and its cause before attempting to mend performance.

Below are the key findings and a summary of responses:

“Training is the solution”, said 18 per cent of respondents

Fewer than one-in-five respondents believe that training is always the solution to performance problems.

These respondents believe that training has a significant and positive impact on staff performance levels, and is a requirement for every part of the business, provided it is delivered effectively.

And while all staff are usually expected to engage in training, it was suggested that company-wide training, including that at senior levels, would contribute to a increased positive company culture and feelings of community.

Overall, training was stated as being invaluable in up-skilling employee performance, demonstrating a direct impact on revenue and public image.

“Training is not the solution”, said 25 per cent of respondents

A quarter of respondents believe that training alone is rarely the answer to performance problems. A number of different factors are suggested as alternative areas for organisations to look at beyond training.

Some respondents suggested that it’s the workplace environment, not the person, that needs attention. These respondents proposed that non-training solutions to problems are more appropriate and effective than training.

Other comments revealed a perceived resistance to training if people believe they don’t need it, heralding a call for training needs analysis and a focus on the importance of learning and development from the inside out.

It was even suggested that some leaders view training as the ‘easy way out’ or a way to fulfil compliance obligations.

“Part of the solution”, said 57 per cent of respondents

Most of the respondents agreed that training plays a crucial role in fixing problems in performance; however, it needs to work alongside other initiatives to truly address problems.

Many recognise that the cause of problems can be deep-seated and that simple training won’t get to the root issue, and therefore won’t be effective.

Respondents stated that the upside of training is that it can offer learning opportunities for individuals, provided they’re motivated to participate.

Running in conjunction with training, respondents stated that other coaching and engagement elements, such as career counselling, team discussions, management training in order to identify and deal with issues before they arise, and addressing poor engagement levels, can prove successful.

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Phonda Vakras
Phonda Vakras

In my opinion training is only a small part of the solution. Before training is implemented it is important to understand the cause of a performance issue. Example: In my own workplace we operate unique 9 hospitality venues. On a weekly basis we utilize an outside party to record levels of beer wastage. Several factors effect our performance in this area and through regular feedback from team members,management and mystery shops. The results show that training our team to pour beer to minimise this wasage has a small influence on the results. Other factors include: – the servicing and efficient… Read more »

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