Xeny Lopez Matos, Training Specialist
COVID. Pandemic. It seems like a lifetime ago we entered the trenches of the unknown and we began drudging through quicksand trying to return to a sense of “normalcy.” This is true for our personal lives as well as our work lives. The pandemic brought social upheaval and a set of changes that were unexpected, to say the least.
Of significant note is the long-lasting, if not permanent, impact the pandemic is having on the workplace. The closing of business doors brought the sudden transition to remote work. We previously took a deeper look into the permanent workforce impacts of the pandemic and how training could be used to help workers adjust to sudden changes. However, the positive impact of training shouldn’t only be considered during unprecedented lifetime events. Training can and should be utilized to provide your workforce with the skills, tools and autonomy to adapt to the ever-evolving demands brought by today’s global economy and consumers.
Consumers…they are always evolving.
Consumer behavior is always changing, and the advent of the internet and social media have only quickened the pace at which their behavior evolves. In addition, a new focus on environmental impact, regardless of the industry, has brought a new angle to purchasing that companies cannot ignore. While change can bring new challenges, it can also provide new opportunities to maximize growth and profit. But how can you ensure that your workers are keeping up with the changing demands? How can you provide your workforce with the tools they need to not only meet their daily expectations, but to exceed them? The answer is training.
Training, oh what a difference it makes!
At the bare minimum, training provides workers with the basic skills they need to adequately complete the requirements of their job. However, if utilized correctly, training can also elevate your workforce to a level that helps you efficiently and quickly achieve success. It is important to change how training is viewed to optimize its success. Training should be seen as an investment, not only in the worker, but also for your business. You are aware that upfront business investments will pay out in the future, whether it’s investment in technology or a new product. Training is no different. By upskilling your workers, you are giving them the tools they need to raise the performance of your business and therefore its profitability. Workers provided with skills will confidently tackle challenges, save time, provide solutions and engage with you and your customers in a proactive manner.
Training for autonomy, not just a skill.
As we know, skills can become outdated and as industries evolve even more skills can be required to successfully execute a task. To maximize the benefits of a training program, you need to focus on the results it will provide. Training should focus on adaptability, flexibility and even state of mind when confronted with a consistently changing landscape. You can’t always predict the needs of an industry and you can’t always foresee a change in demand. However, you can design training programs that provide your workforce with qualities that help them not only adapt to changes, but to embrace them. Adaptability and a challenge-oriented attitude will benefit all employees who need to be flexible to meet customers’ changing demands and new industry standards. Training isn’t just about providing your workforce with skills. The right training program can also help your company develop a culture of resilience and positive state of mind.
Consumers are complicated. We know this and we are always trying to understand them, to predict their behavior, to show them what they need and what they really want. However, this requires a properly trained workforce to meet and adapt to constant changes in consumer demand. Training shouldn’t be seen as a “checkbox” or something to be completed because it is required for “XYZ,” but rather a tool that is sought after to stay ahead of the competition. Training provides the tools workers need to feel confident and flexible in meeting the demands for the evolving organism that is today’s consumer.