7 Ways to Keep Employees Engaged During Training Sessions

Are you spending thousands on employee development programs but not getting your desired results? Learn how to keep employees engaged.

Are you spending thousands on employee development programs but not getting your desired results? You aren’t alone. Nearly 85 percent of employees are not engaged at work, including training sessions, despite 74 percent of workers feeling they are not able to reach their full potential due to a lack of development opportunities.

This occurs due to a lack of training and poor or poorly managed training that leaves employees disengaged, stressed, and disinterested. If you face disengaged employees during training sessions, check out the tips below.

Make Your Sessions More Fun

Avoid making training formal or boring. Instead, try to make it interesting by using techniques such as gamification. This term refers to incorporating elements of games, such as points, badges, levels, and leaderboards, into training activities to make them more engaging and fun.

You can start with a group activity to make training even more stimulating. Working in teams helps break the ice, improves culture, helps boost collaborations, and gets people excited. These benefits result in greater learning and, ultimately, a better outcome.

Introduce Breaks

It is natural for employees to lose focus if the training is too complex or too long. Hence, consider introducing short breaks to help them rejuvenate. Reports suggest that the human brain can only remain focused for about 45 minutes. Hence, keep your training sessions short or introduce breaks after every 45 minutes.

This is also what your employees want – about 85 percent of workers believe that regular breaks can help improve productivity. But you must plan with care. These breaks do not have to be long, and they should not cause any disturbance.

Use these breaks to allow workers to crack a joke, rush to the restroom, move around, or just close their eyes and relax.

Offer Something They Are Interested In

Training needs to be personalized. You must understand what your workers wish to learn and produce content accordingly.

Start by gathering data and figuring out what your employees want. This can be done by performing a Training Need Analysis that most companies usually skip. This is why only 34 percent of employees are fully satisfied with their training even though more than 50 percent of them consider it to be necessary.

The analysis process involves looking at the skills, abilities, and knowledge of your employees to determine the types of training your workers need to be able to move your company towards its goals.

One of the most important steps in the process is to figure out what your employees already know and what additional information they need in their arsenal. A reliable way to gather this data is to talk to employees, collect anecdotes from managers, and use tactics such as survey forms and evaluating existing training resources.

Give Employees Some Autonomy

Gone are the days of locking your employees in a room for hours. Everything is going digital, and so should your training sessions. Put your training sessions online and allow your workers to access them on their mobile devices or on a computer.

The next generation of employees want flexibility, and some are even willing to accept a pay cut in exchange for flexible hours. This trick applies not just to regular work hours but to training as well. Workers don’t enjoy having to reach the training venue at a specific hour and sit for long periods of time. They want to be able to access training resources on the go – whenever they want to and from wherever they want to.

You can solve this problem by uploading training videos, manuals, and resources. In fact, many companies, such as The Contractor Consultants, offer online courses and training sessions for contractors. Virtual universities don’t just offer more flexibility but also allow companies to cater to a larger audience, as online content can be viewed without limits.

Highlight the Benefits of Training

Give your workers reasons to get engaged and take an interest in training. Here are a few ways to do it:

  • Highlight how training and development can help them move to better roles. Remember that about 74 percent of workers are willing to be trained if it results in a better job or a promotion.
  • Offer monetary benefits for completing training, such as cash rewards or increased pay.
  • Explain how training can help workers remain safe by highlighting case studies and relevant stats.

Create a culture of appreciation so that even new workers know that they must continue to learn to grow with you. Lead by example by offering promotions to trained individuals so that others are motivated to learn too.

Get Your Employees Involved

Get your employees to actively take part in the training session by using these tricks:

  • Ask for their feedback about training, including the type of training they want. It isn’t just about the topic; training can be of different types as well, such as roleplaying and seminars.
  • Send a list of questions related to the topic to find out how much employees comprehend. However, make sure to avoid putting a lot of pressure on your workers.
  • Keep sessions interactive, even if they’re virtual, by giving attendees small tasks. This will keep them active and engaged.

Feedback can be collected during or after a training session through interviews, questionnaires, surveys, and more. However, feedback is not only about collecting data but also about implementing it.

Pay attention to what your workers have to say and make changes to your training program accordingly. Remember that they are doing their jobs every day and are more aware of issues they face than you are, so make sure to pay special attention to their concerns and suggestions.

Above All, Hire People Who Want to Be Trained

At the end of the day, it boils down to the worker. You can’t force someone to get trained; even if they participate in sessions, they will not become a better worker. So, what can you do? Look for people who are passionate about learning.

A great way to do this is to work with a company that can identify employees who are interested in growth opportunities and training. Outsourcing your HR department offers benefits such as reduced burden, quick access to a wide pool of talent, and cost savings.

Matt DiBara
Matt DiBara, the owner of DiBara Masonry, is the founder of The Contractor Consultants. He’s the fourth generation of Italian immigrant-built masonry that is ranked five stars on Google, Yelp, and HomeAdvisor. He’s known as the “undercover contractor” who works with celebrity clients and everyday homeowners to provide advice and insight about how to manage construction projects. https://www.linkedin.com/in/matthewdibara/ https://www.instagram.com/theundercovercontractor/ https://twitter.com/ContractorSOS