The Pitfalls of ‘Need-to-Know’ Training…

I heard this from a manager the other day…

Our method of training is to have a new employee shadow one of our technicians for a couple days before we let them process themselves. This method teaches the our employees what they need to know about processing, the rest they learn on-the-job.

My Thoughts
When you try to teach an employee just what they ‘need to know’ they might learn enough to be mildly effective in the workplace, but they will not learn what is truly necessary to really succeed at their job. For effective problem solving, a person needs to know the why, and not just the how. 
For example, if a die setter is told to use a torque wrench to tighten the bolts but does not know why this is important, they are very likely to just use the wrench in their hand to tighten the bolts rather than walk to the toolbox and retrieve the torque wrench.
Additionally, inadequate information can result in poor workplace safety because an uninformed employee is more likely to cut corners. Employees who reach under guards, tie off safety switches, and lit things improperly are usually just trying to save time without really understanding the consequences.

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