It is essential that skills developed through training should be reinforced to keep those skills on top-of-mind. The best ways to reinforce those skills are through repetition, application and efficacious use of technology.
When an organization sends its employees for training - to develop a particular set of skills it must also be ensured that those employees are being provided with requisite resources to remind them later about the nuances of the skills acquired. They must also be provided with verbal reinforcement like job aides and reference guides to fall back on at their workplace. Repetition is the key to learning and is indispensable for skill retention. One must practise in order to be perfect.
Adult learners must be able to discern the relevance of what they are learning so that they can apply the skill learned during training to their everyday jobs, which is also referred to as transfer. If the skill is of no value then the learners won’t be able to retain them.
Technology can be really helpful in retaining the skills acquired and can be a great tool to help employees apply and retain the skills learnt from anywhere. There has to be post training learning plan with rewards and incentives to encourage employees to apply the skills through social learning (using forums and building communities of practice), allowing them to engage with their peers through interactive chats and online discussions. This could be an effective strategy where technology can aid in skill retention. Learners can also interact on online forums by asking questions or posting blogs as well as comment on particular topics and even employers can respond.
Alongside training, skill retention is equally important because it affects the performance of an employee on-the-job and organizations must keep on creating opportunities for practice. Help your employees transfer skills learnt through retention, application and with the help of technology.
Written By : Dr Sanjib Neil Chakraborty
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