I was recently asked this interesting question…
I see that you teach at a university, are you planning on providing classroom training?
Classroom training is not the most effective method available for training your production employees. Some seminars provide 4-8 hours of training a day… which is far too much information to absorb in one week…never mind in one day!
Lengthy classroom training sessions tends to be very disruptive to the production environment. Sending employees out for training can often cost 1-2 times more than the training itself. Likewise, sending a consultant to your plant for on-site training classroom training can be both costly and distracting to your employees. In either case, you still have the underlying issue where the employees do not learn well in the classroom environment.
As an adjunct professor at the Plastics Engineering Department of the University of Massachusetts Lowell, I have successfully blended labs, interactive training, simulation software, product testing, new technology, and outside exercises. Since these classes are comprised of plastics professionals, this helps ensure my participants actually learn the information and understand how it applies to their role as production employees. At Routsis Associates, I have also used this approach successfully in distance learning situations using a variety of media such as interactive training, on-the-job exercises, testing, and short 1-hour training sessions.
As I blogged previously, ask yourself… ‘What Do You Hope To Achieve Through Training?’. To paraphrase… training should be purchased to help meet and sustain specific employee development and competency goals. Keeping this in mind will help you evaluate whether a training method develop competent employees, or just give them a bunch of information.