Tuesday, January 02, 2007

The Quality of Staff Development Trainings


Unshelved, the comic strip about a library which I thoroughly enjoy, ran a series of strips during the week of December 11-15 about staff trainings.

December 11 - Dewey (the main character) wants to be a disruptive co-worker.

December 12 - Dewey takes over a technical training because the trainer is inept.

December 13 - Dewey disagrees with the trainer on the clique "always give the customer what they want".

December 14 - Dewey leaves the training early when the trainer wants to implement a "trust exercise".

December 15 - Dewey explains that he would rather not go to staff trainings.

So, all in all, not a good picture of staff training. And certainly this series has a bit of that "it's funny because it's true" feeling. This can happen when you train just for training's sake.

But please know that your Staff Development department works hard to avoid these types of trainings. The last thing we want to do is waste your time. And we also work hard to make sure our material is directly related to your day-to-day operations. We also attempt to make our training environments open and inviting. You should feel free to ask questions, to clarify, and to add input. In the end, you should feel free to evaluate our training realistically and provide input on how we can improve the training.

That being said, not wanting to be in a training and not listening/participating in the training will often lead to a self-fulfilled prophecy of wasted time, no matter the amount of effort put into developing the training.

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