Do Better Work: How to Assess your Training Program

At Lessonly, it’s our mission to help people do better work so they can live better lives. Our Better Work Method (and the accompanying Better Work Assessment) examines the six essential steps of building a high-performing training program. This blog series offers an inside look at each step and how the Lessonly team applies each one to do better work.

Over the last year, the Lessonly sales team has grown significantly. In the midst of our growth, we quickly learned that an employee training plan can set new reps up for healthy success—or frustrating failure. A well-designed training plan improves employee engagement and retention rates, decreases ramp time to productivity, and more. That’s why we continually assess our training program to ensure that it equips reps with the knowledge and skills they need to be successful.

Thoughtfully assessing our learning efforts helps us—and many of our customers—make educated decisions about our team training. Our process examines training program strengths and weaknesses, gauges learning needs, and is the crucial first step to doing better work. Here are three ways to start assessing your team’s training program: 

Want to see how your team’s training program stacks up? Take the Better Work Assessment.

Listen to your team

One of the easiest ways to gather information about your team’s current training program and learning needs is to ask team members. When asking your team for input, it’s important to not generalize. Rather than focusing on training for every employee, learn one role at a time to discover what employees need and want. Zoe Meinecke, Lessonly’s Director of Services, also recommends gathering feedback from supervisors, managers, and employees during this phase. The more information you gather, the easier it will be to see what your team finds valuable and what training they still need to do better work.

The Lessonly sales team champions this process when they assess their training program. Instead of evaluating training for the entire team, our sales directors assess the needs of sales development representatives and account executives separately. This laser-focus makes it easier to identify trends in feedback and gaps in learning for each role, rather than creating generic, non-specific training.

Tip: Design your training to elicit feedback and actionable insights. At Lessonly, we give every employee the chance to ask questions and provide feedback at the end of every lesson. Teams can also gather feedback through anonymous surveys, one-on-one meetings, and performance reviews.

Gather the data that matters

Forward-thinking leaders also use data to map, maximize, and measure their team’s training program. There are a variety of possible data inputs to consider when gathering information—including business objectives, department goals, past performance, industry benchmarks, market factors, and more. While all of these are important to consider, team leaders and trainers should determine and prioritize the insights that are the most valuable and essential to assess training. It’s important to know which pieces of data are signals, and which are just noise.

At Lessonly we look at industry, company, team, and employee data inputs. From reviewing learning engagement and satisfaction scores to measuring individual and business KPIs, we strive to gather insights from as many sources as possible. We also reflect on upcoming organizational changes such as hiring plans and product releases to ensure we assess training through a wide-angle lens about how it impacts our business.

Tip: The more data inputs you evaluate, the better the final product will be. For example, if you only asked the sales team for input, but not the product team, you might not consider creating enablement training content for the company’s upcoming product releases.

Identify successes and challenges

Once you receive feedback from your team and review data insights, it will be easier to pinpoint your training program’s successes and challenges. Zoe notes, “Teams need to identify key processes and employee performance expectations—then assess their training against each.” If a team consistently meets certain performance objectives, such as outbound sales calls, but fails to achieve their scheduled demo quota, it’s likely they need additional training on a convincing sales pitch.

The Lessonly team experienced a very similar situation late last year. While our sales team was successfully delivering sales pitches to prospects, they hit snags during the demos. The team saw this an opportunity to provide more in-depth training that enabled reps to ace the demo process and move the conversation to the next stage of the sales cycle. If the team hadn’t identified successes and challenges, they would not have created the training that empowers reps to be successful.

Tip: Quarterly review is the Goldilocks of training—not too long, not too frequent—just right. Lessonly creates and reviews new objectives on a quarterly basis, which means it’s also a perfect time to assess our training program. This ensures every employee is enabled with the skills and knowledge they need to work towards and achieve objectives—quarter after quarter.

Assess and improve your training program with Lessonly

Hundreds of teams use Lessonly to do better work. Our free Better Work Assessment identifies key areas for training improvement so your sales reps develop essential skills, deliver flawless demos, and close more deals. See how your training stacks up, or take a tour today.

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