This month’s Secret L&D manager is Australian, based in Germany and works for an American corporation which produces machine vision systems and software. He has worked in training and development for over 18 years – as an L&D manager, an in-house trainer and as an external training provider.
One of the things that’s burning at the moment is helping the managers I work with see the role they play in developing people. This is not a question of lack of willingness on their side – just a lack of awareness of the role they can and should play. For example, most of the time if they know that Dieter needs to improve his presentation skills, they send him on one of the 2-day presentation courses we run. When Dieter gets back, they expect that they can tick a box and say, “Well, Dieter can present now.” This is a start, but it isn’t good enough. It is not enough for them to assume that the training department or the training provider is going to solve everything alone. I need to help them see their role in developing their staff’s skills.
How do you see the manager’s role in developing their staff?
If we look at the 70-20-10 model, just 10% of the change will come from the training itself. 20% is when Dieter is learning from his colleagues, sharing ideas and giving each other tips and feedback. BUT, the other 70% will come from just getting up there and doing it (best of course, if supplemented with feedback and guidance where required). If the manager wants somebody to get better at a skill, they need to make sure there is plenty of opportunity for that person to actually use that skill, give them support and guidance and let them use what they are learning. This is clearly in the manager’s hands. I want our managers to be realistic in their expectations and see the role that they play in the developmental process. We work together.
How do you see your role in this?
I have a number of roles. I work to identify current and future training needs. I then organize practical training with training providers who are going to deliver what we need and challenge the participants to really improve. I also need to help our managers understand their role in developing our staff and encourage them to see training as a collaborative effort between them, the employee, us in L&D, and the training providers. And of course, the person getting the training needs to take some responsibility and ownership for their own development – and I can offer advice and support here too, both before and after the “formal” training. Our experts need to be present in the training and they need to actively look to use what they have learned and practiced after the training too. And again, this is where their manager plays an important role.
Who is the secret L&D manager?
The “secret L&D manager” is actually a group of L&D managers. They are real people who would prefer not to mention their name or company – but do want to write anonymously so they can openly and directly share their ideas and experience with peers.
You can meet more of our secret L&D managers here …
- Without boundaries – Why I believe the digital learning experience represents the future of L&D
- 3 questions to ask your existing training providers
And if you’d like to share your thoughts and experiences without sharing your name or company then please get in touch.