Make Induction Training a Priority
I'm currently in the middle of redesigning an induction programme for a very well known brand, and it is not my first. Induction training is an ideal project for an invisible trainer like me, as it unquestionably has to be delivered by the internal training team.
I've found that most training companies want to focus on leadership and management development, and aren't really that interested in induction. Of course leadership development is important, but induction is my personal passion. I think that there are a number of reasons for this.
1. You never get a second chance to make a first impression. It's a cliché but it's true. Many companies spend hundreds if not thousands of pounds recruiting someone, only to leave their experience in their first few days to chance. Induction is a fantastic opportunity to reinforce the decision that new person has made to join you, and to showcase what your business is all about.
2. EVERYONE goes through an induction (or at least they should). Leadership and management programmes only affect a small population within an organisation. The lessons learned from those programmes have to be filtered down through a few individuals. With an induction, everybody is included. Everybody gets to hear what you want to say. Everybody is touched in some way.
3. It’s interesting! To write an effective induction you have to get to know the business, and nothing is more fascinating than other people's jobs. When researching induction programmes I've worked in shops, I've sat in call centres, I've visited distribution centres, I've been round factories and building sites. Getting to understand the nitty-gritty of a business is one of the most pleasurable parts of an invisible trainer's job.
4. It makes an immediate difference. I'm a practical person, and induction training is practical too. People start an induction programme knowing very little and they end it knowing an awful lot more. This is measurable. And, because a good induction programme goes far beyond day one, people completing their induction programme have actually moved from being clueless to being basically competent in core aspects of their job, and that is incredibly satisfying.
5. It's an opportunity to develop the whole organisation. Good induction programmes rely on a team to bring them to life, not just the HR person, which has benefits for the new starter, their manager, colleagues and of course the business as a whole. I can't think of many other training interventions that brings together team mates in quite the same way.
My advice for organisational training is to start as you mean to go on. Make sure your induction training sets the standard for all training within the business rather than being an after-thought.