Why Does Training Often Fail?
Even in companies that tend to support the training of employees, and make training and development opportunities available to employees, much of the resources allocated to training are wasted. That is, there is no measurable or obvious positive results in terms of better employee contributions or productivity. The reason is that support for training isn't enough. It must be planned and linked properly.
Typically what happens is that training "is made available", but the actual focus, content and training methods aren't really linked to the actual business or personnel needs of the company, or the needs and desires of the people who attend training. If training and employee development are not "aimed" at addressing needs and wants of both company and attendees, they aren't likely to hit any worthwhile target. The result is an investment of time and money, and little impact in the workplace.
Another way of putting this is that training works well when it "fits", and to identify what will fit, one must ask the right questions, and act upon the answers. Here's some of the most important ones:
1) What business problems are we addressing?
2) Is the business problem a result of a skills gap (or something that training can address?)
3) Who requires what training might deliver? Who should attend?
4) Is training the best solution to addressing the business problem? What alternatives are there?
5) How can we provide support after training to ensure there is payoff?