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Cases and Problems

30 October, 2015 - 16:03

Chapter Summary

  • Employee training and development is a necessity in today’s work environment. Training and development can lead to lower turnover and increased motivation.
  • There are four basic steps to employee training: employee orientation, in-house training, mentoring, and external training.
  • Different types of training can be delivered, each falling into the steps of employee training. These include technical or technology training, quality training, skills training, soft skills training, professional training, team training, managerial training, and safety training.
  • Within the types of training, we need to determine which method is best for the actual delivery of training. Options include on-the-job training, mentor training, brown bag lunches, web-based training, job shadowing, job swapping, and vestibule training.
  • Development of a training development framework is the first step in solidifying the training.
  • Considerations and steps to developing the training framework include determining the training needs, delivery modes, budget, delivery style, audience, content, time lines, communication of the training, and measurement of the training.
  • Career development programs can be an essential piece to the training puzzle. A comprehensive program or plan, either developed by employees or administered by HR, can help with motivation and fill the gap when people in the organization leave or retire. It can also be used as a motivational tool.

Chapter Case

New on the Job

JoAnn Michaels just started her job as human resources manager at In the Dog House, a retail chain specializing in dog apparel and accessories. She is a good friend of yours you met in college.

The organization has 35 stores with 250 employees in Washington, Idaho, and Oregon. As the chain has grown, the training programs have been conducted somewhat piecemeal. Upon visiting some of the stores in a three-week tour, JoAnn has realized that all the stores seem to have different ways of training their in-store employees.

When she digs further, she realizes even the corporate offices, which employ seventy-five people, have no formal training program. In the past, they have done informal and optional brown bag lunch training to keep employees up to date. As a result, JoAnn develops a survey using SurveyMonkey and sends it to all seventy-five corporate employees. She created a rating system, with 1 meaning strongly disagree and 5 meaning strongly agree. Employees were not required to answer all questions, hence the variation in the number of responses column. After this task, JoAnn creates a slightly different survey and sends it to all store managers, asking them to encourage their retail employees to take the survey. The results are shown here.

In the Dog House Corporate Employee Survey Results
Question Number of Responses Average Rating
I am paid fairly. 73 3.9
I feel my group works well as a team. 69 2.63
I appreciate the amount of soft skills training offered at In the Dog House. 74 2.1
I can see myself growing professionally here. 69 1.95
I feel I am paid fairly. 74 3.8
I have all the tools and equipment I need to do my job. 67 4.2
I feel confident if there were an emergency at the office, I would know what to do and could help others. 73 2.67
I think my direct supervisor is an excellent manager. 55 2.41
The orientation training I received was helpful in understanding the expectations of the job. 75 3.1
I would take training related to my job knowing there would be a reward offered for doing so. 71 4.24 In 71 4.24
In the Dog House Retail Employee Survey Results
Question Number of Responses Average Rating
I am content with the benefits I am receiving. 143 1.2
I feel my store works well as a team. 190 4.1
I appreciate the amount of product training and information offered at In the Dog House. 182 2.34
I can see myself growing professionally here. 158 1.99
I feel I am paid fairly. 182 3.2
My supervisor works with my schedule, so I work at times that are convenient for me. 172 3.67
I feel confident if I had to evacuate the store, I would know what to do and could help customers. 179 2.88
I think my store manager is a great manager. 139 3.34
The orientation training I received was helpful in understanding the expectations of the job. 183 4.3
I am interested in developing my career at In the Dog House. 174 1.69

Based on the information JoAnn received from her survey, she decided some changes need to be made. JoAnn asks you to meet for coffee and take a look at the results. After you review them, JoAnn asks you the following questions. How would you respond to each?

“Obviously, I need to start working on some training programs. Which topics do you think I should start with?”

“How do I go about developing a training program that will be really useful and make people excited? What are the steps I need to take?”

“How should I communicate the training program to the corporate and retail employees? Should the new training I develop be communicated in the same way?”

“Do you think that we should look at changing pay and benefits? Why or why not?”

“Can you please help me draft a training program framework for what we have discussed? Do you think I should design one for both the corporate offices and one for the retail stores?” (Hint: Look at Figure 8.4for guidelines.)

Team Activity

  1. In teams of three to four, outline a two-hour training program for managers to better understand motivation for their employees. Motivation is discussed in Retention and Motivation. Use the training development model discussed in this chapter. Your training should address learning objectives, delivery modes, budget, delivery style, time line, communication, and measurement. Prepare a five-minute presentation to present in class.
  2. Using the same plan above, plan and deliver the content to the rest of the class.