The Time for Training

Now is the Time for Training- a Smart Investment

“Only the educated are free.” -Epictetus

In tougher, lean times in any organization, training needs should NOT be delayed or cancelled.  Now is actually the time to keep your staff Capital high. Now is the time to either maintain or even increase spending on training and development. Create a mindset of value-based training in your organization. Why?

Let’s take customer service as an example.

Reducing or shelving your training budget will delay any progress and improvements in your customer service levels and initiatives. Therefore you are delaying customer satisfaction, loyalty, and retention. In other words you are actually losing money when you delay or cancel training.

When tough times come the training budget is often first to go in the overall budgets of many company. Yes, it is usually reinstated when good times return – slowly. But, what took place in the meantime? The 6 months, the year when training was reduced? Lost business, dissatisfied customers, and complaints, loss of momentum, de-motivation and possible loss of business that will be very hard to recover. It has been said that customer retention is one of the most important initiatives that can be taken, but usually is given little thought. When times are tough surely we should be increasing our attention to this activity and it almost always needs training.

Training can sometimes be treated as an extra or only if absolutely needed. The news is Training is a necessity and always an urgent consideration. Unfortunately many companies don’t take time to consider the implications of NOT training their staff. Now, it is sometimes the fault of the training provider as they don’t always emphasize or campaign the need for training in downturns. They also need to keep a positive attitude.

In the case of customer service, what are the subjects that underpin excellent customer service? Consider these at the foundations:

Time management

Problem Solving

Communication Skills

Phone Techniques


Internal Customer service, and more at the foundations.

Consider the benefits of timely training programs in customer service:

  • Retains customers
  • Motivating
  • Increases output
  • Strengthens teams for the upturn
  • Improves performance
  • Reduces stress
  • Employees feel valued
  • Improves recruitment as you are known to value learning
  • Fewer errors
  • Reduced customer turnover
  • Reduced employee turnover, when turnover is attributable to poor supervision
  • Proper implementation of new customer strategies
  • Higher workplace morale through more effective management practices
  • Reduced recruitment costs (because training can create more job-ready candidates for promotions)

Of course all employees should benefit from training, but at times company need to look at areas of greater maximum return for investment. E.g. If we targeted all sales persons in a company and they improved their performance only by 6% – just 6% – it could equate to a doubling of revenue gained through better sales techniques, etc.

Any decent training provider should be able to create an innovative method in which to plan and schedule your training so it is not a budget or time sapping exercise. Call us and we will provide a number of ways we can meet your vital training needs at minimum cost and time but with maximum value. It just takes planning.

We can calculate a cost/benefit equation that will help you see the return on training investment (ROTI ™). For instance a 2 days customer service course that cost your company in total UD 10,000 over 2 days and for 20 staff.

For the next year this investment equates to USD 833 per month / USD 27.77 per day total cost for the training. My question to you is do you think your staff can create enough positive customer experiences or “Moments of Truth”, to at least cover this amount each month? Do you think your staff can retain or attract enough customers to make this worthwhile? Do you think that 20 staff that attends this training can over a year provide a ROTI that exceeds USD 27.77 a day? The cost of each employee attending the course is about USD 1.38 per day. I would estimate that they will be able to return your investment many, many times over, Plus all the other benefits mentioned.

Contact COLES TRAINING to discuss innovative methods of meeting your training needs economically and in a timely manner. I can calculate the cost and benefits of training for your particular training considerations. It is a four part process formula and takes us about 15 minutes. This simple time investment could save you thousands in lost revenue.

Rick Coles

January 12, 2010