Culture of Training
Since March of 2020, COVID-19 has changed the way Faith Technologies delivers team member training. Before the pandemic, our in-house training led the way by bringing the apprentice into one of our four training locations for a week of classroom instruction, five times a year, with hands-on learning in best-in-class labs and classrooms. The classes were led by some of the best instructors and committed people that I have ever worked with, investing in our learners with time, money and other resources.
Today, we continue to provide best-in-class training with our experienced team, but now we do it virtually, safely offering both pre-recorded and live virtual classes that can be taken at will or scheduled during working hours. Besides safety, another advantage of virtual training is that money previously spent on travel expenses is invested back into the apprentice program to reward students for every class they complete. As noted in a previous blog article, under great leadership and teamwork, we completely reorganized, redeveloped and remodeled our training content and delivery.
If your organization is having to do more training virtually, one way to compensate for any missing lab work is to give field employees the liberty to look for ways apprentices can get experience doing certain tasks in the field, under the supervised guidance of qualified personnel. During daily review sessions, identify training needs of the job site workforce so that less experienced personnel can be teamed up with qualified people to get any training and experience that was less available during their apprenticeship. Start by asking questions like, “Who doesn’t know how to hook up this transformer?” or “Who needs to learn how to wire up this PLC for the motor?” then pair up teams for the jobs that day. Often the inexperienced people will not volunteer for these new tasks for fear of failure, but if you give directions to team up with others, it can feel more acceptable to learn and eventually excel. This can help fill any gaps from virtual training; the new labs are in the field and employees get experience in specific tasks.
At Faith Technologies, we know there is a need to look downstream and identify learners that can fill the void that is coming from the graying of our industry or the exit into retirement of the experienced workforce. If we don’t hand these skills down, the profession will suffer. These opportunities working shoulder-to-shoulder with others and passing down skills and experiences will continue to help our team members be successful. Good leaders help others to succeed. This is a true Culture of Training.