Four More Reasons For Training Programs

In my previous post about training programs, I presented four reasons to train, not only despite the recent tough economy, but because of it. Here are four more:

1) While you want to encourage divergent thinking among your staff professionals, I think you’ll agree that in today’s challenging environment, all team members must be in lock-step when it comes to understanding agency quality standards and best practices. Training is a highly-effective tool to communicate these standards and practices, and assure adherence to both.

2) Many of your teams are reeling from what they saw going on around them in the past two years. Even if your agency didn’t cut staffers, it’s likely that each of them has peers in other firms who have been laid off.  It’s scary out there. Training is an affordable way to re-assure the troops that you’re confident about your agency’s ability to weather the storm, leverage the Great Recovery and have a solid future.

3) I personally feel that PR pros are better suited than those from other marketing disciplines to leverage social media. Why? We’ve always been about engaging audiences, participating  in dialogue, and influencing influencers. But social media channels are changing rapidly, practically daily. Are you using training to keep all your staffers on top of the new, new in this area?

4) For today’s PR pros from the Millennial Generation (whom I wrote about in Al Croft’s “Management Strategies for PR Firms” newsletter) there is an expectation that employers will provide a career track and training, regardless of the state of the economy.

We may not agree with that particular notion, but we’d be foolhardy to ignore it, if we want to have teams of motivated GenY staffers whose loyalty is intact now that our industry is rebounding.

So I ask again: How can you afford not to be training?

Ken Jacobs

I’m the principal of Jacobs Communications Consulting, which helps public relations and communications agencies and organizations grow and manage business, and enhance staff performance, leadership and communications skills.We do so via consulting, training, and coaching. To learn more, please click on the “Jacobs Communications Consulting” tab on the top.

5 comments
AlmostSavvy
AlmostSavvy

Right on, Ken! I come from a corporate background where I led HR teams for many years. An ongoing commitment to training and professional development (if done well) accomplishes several things, including keeping the team's skills current, learning new skills, strengthening the synergy within the team and acknowledging the value of each team member. Sure, it is an investment and training if often one of the first areas to cut when money is tight, but in a competitive market, having motivated employees and a team that is leveraging the latest best practices may be what makes you stand out.

KensViews
KensViews

Mimi, thanks for taking the time, and for such a thoughtful comment. The time, and even the hard cost of training shouldn't be looked on as an expense, but as an investment that will pay off: Better teamwork and productivity, as you cited, as well as happier clients, and team members who see their current agency as a place where they want to stay, because they're growing.

MimiMeredith
MimiMeredith

I agree with all these reasons and more! I think training keeps all of us fresh and relevant in today's fast-paced world of technological innovations and changing social media tools among others. And of course, I am a huge advocate for getting together to talk and listen regarding timeless topics such as leadership and civility. The benefits include deeper understanding of one another which leads to better teamwork and productivity...win, win,win!

KensViews
KensViews

@AlmostSavvy Irene, thanks so much for your comment. I couldn't have said it as well--so glad that you did! I particularly appreciate your choice of the word "investment." It's not just a cost, but an investment you make in your team and your organization from which you can, and should, expect a real benefit.

AlmostSavvy
AlmostSavvy

@KensViews We so easily get caught up in trying to quantify ROI of training, which sends things sideways in a hurry. The benefits are long-term and don't necessarily demonstrate immediate return for those looking for impact on the bottom-line. The investment should me made expecting a longer term payoff.

By the way, love the blog!

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  1. […] important client: your agency!4)    Start, Reinvigorate, Or Expand The Agency Training Program: Training can have a number of positive impacts on your agency. First, one of the keys to profitability is […]