How to Develop a Training Plan

Training plans are necessary in business and education to solve complex problems. When a project requires expertise that the team involved does not currently possess, a training plan details actionable steps to correct that deficiency. In agile, growing businesses, all employees incorporate regular training into their schedules to sharpen their own skills and empower the company as a whole.

Identify the goals involved in the training. Delegate specialized training to team members with extraordinary talents. Individuals work better when they are given concrete goals. Vague instructions to improve are far less effective than an outline of achievable, objectively verifiable training goals.

Determine a time frame for the training to be completed. If a particular training goal will take years for an employee or group to accomplish, strongly consider breaking up the task into smaller components. Long term training projects are much more challenging to manage and plan for than short term ones.

Select an appropriate training method to the goals involved. In many cases, on the job training will be sufficient, but time must be set aside to enable it. In others, classes for employees or training seminars may need to be organized. Self-study among employees can also be encouraged, so long as managers have a means to verify that the training is taking place.

Choose and communicate appropriate incentives for the training program. Team members may resent exhortations to go to extraordinary lengths to train unless leaders provide appropriate incentives. Leaders that reward extraordinary initiative in regards to effective training will almost inevitably reap rewards from it.

Alter the training plan as necessary. A plan functions best as a living document--responding to the changing needs of both the company and team members. When developing goals, keep in mind the direction that you would like to move in afterward. The more training that employees become accustomed to, the more likely that it will develop into a strong habit that will no longer require close management supervision.