Training employees takes time, effort and quite a bit of patience. The key to getting the most of their talents is to start out teaching them the right way as soon as possible. It'll lead to more productivity, better quality work and less stress later on. Whether you're a boss or an employee who has to train a fellow coworker, there are several tips for training employees that can help make the process easier.
You can't just constantly tell an employee everything he does wrong and blow off everything he does right. It's the easiest way to beat down his self-esteem and likely contribute to him making more mistakes. When he does something right, let him know and offer up some praise.
Provide constructive criticism
Throwing insults at your trainees isn't going to get their motivation going. Providing constructive criticism is going to let them know what they did wrong and how to do it correctly without making them feel completely stupid.
Tell about some of your not-so-great moments
It's easy for employees to feel as if their boss never made mistakes even if they've made a thousand they don't know about. Tell about a moment or two when you were less-than-perfect, when you made a mistake in the past at work. It can help your employees relate more to you and feel as though if they work hard they could possibly get to your level one day even though they've made a couple of mistakes.
Allow a hands-on approach
The best way for an employee to learn something new usually isn't to be told how to do it a thousand times, but to go with a hands-on approach instead. They'll have to do it sometime, so rather than have them get slightly confused going by wording alone, let them dive in head first with the hands-on approach and do what they need to in order to learn properly.
Allow room for mistakes
Trainees aren't going to be perfect. They're going to make mistakes and very likely do so repeatedly, at least in the beginning. Don't give them something important to work on right away so if they screw up it's going to create a whole slew of problems. Give them sample work to tackle, but let them think it's anything but. They'll put in the same amount of effort they would on regular work without the risk of making mistakes on something incredibly important.
Provide a cheat sheet
To help make the trainee's life easier - as well as your own - provide him with a cheat sheet for navigating certain tasks. For example, if there's a specific way for him to get into a computer program or someone he has to contact if his email crashes, have it on the cheat sheet. It'll allow him to feel a bit more comfortable knowing he has something to fall back on, it can help him get his work done in the correct way and he won't have to bother you with more questions than necessary. It's also easier to give to new trainees instead of repeating the same information over and over again.
Don't just teach the basics
Teaching the basics is for average businesses who want their employees to be just as average. When you're training employees, don't just educate them on the basics, teach them more than what other businesses are teaching their trainees. Not only does it give you an edge, but it'll also be a reason for them to stay with you - they're learning more from you then they could anywhere else.
It's so important to exhibit patience with your employees, especially in the very beginning and on days when you want to toss them across the office. The more an employer pushed me in a positive way, the more I was committed to doing the best I possibly could and then some. More often than not when you show faith in employees, they're going to reciprocate with loyalty and extra effort.
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