- Management Training Programs
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Management Training Programs
Management training is a critical difference maker for high performance companies. Companies hiring management trainees have specific duties in mind that vary widely depending on the specific industry, level of management and the company or organization hiring or developing the employee.
What specific recruiting ideas apply to both the hiring Manager and the Trainee?
Several important questions a Manager can ask:
- Describe a time when you were involved in a group project and there was a dispute among group members. How did you handle the dispute? What would you have done differently?
- Tell me about a time when you had to motivate an associate. What did you do? If you were not successful, what would you have done differently?
When selecting specific people to be developed and placed into a management trainee positions, the manager and organization have various options. You could recruit a candidate with similar experience from prior employers and expect that they can accommodate the skill set for the position being developed for the organization. An alternative is the “inside selection” whereby a companies are focusing on bringing management candidates up within the company instead. If you are intent on filling a management position with an existing employee, it pays to know exactly what you are looking for and how this person will be developed to give everyone the best opportunity for success.
The Formal Management Development Program
For most top performing companies, a formal written training and development programs has been developed. This program will define the specific skills and technical knowledge required for the position, as well as the types of assignments the trainee will receive. They also checkpoints or specify times for periodic evaluation of the trainee’s progress and performance. While the length of such programs vary, they often range in length from several months to a year or more.
One proven technique is to have the trainee’s assignments rotated among the various departments in involved (or the various positions within the business unit) in order to develop familiarity with the whole organization and its functions. This will also build the credentials of the manager trainee as potential direct reports feel the trainee understands the functions of the unit.
How Should Managers Approach Interactions with Management Trainees?
Managers should integrate skills and concepts from training into interactions and periodic discussions as they meet with their manager trainee on a regular basis. A program guide can be created by the manager, company trainer or HR and should provide mangers with an outline of the concepts and skill sets to be reinforced from the training. The trainee will feel a sense of commitment on the part of the manager as the training is discussed and real world examples can be provided.
Defining potential activities the senior manager might use with the manager trainee is important to reinforce and stay on point. A meeting guide also should suggest different formats for the meeting and meeting lengths and coaching goals and objectives. The Guide should be based on elements such as the learning objectives from the training, business priorities, and areas where trainees still needs reinforcement.
Goals for A Management Training Program
Promotion is the goal of most management training endeavors. The jobs open to those who complete a Management Trainee program depend on the sort of industry employing them, as well as individual interests and aptitudes. The trainee’s interests, the skills and aptitudes developed in the program and the senior manager’s first hand experience with the trainee’s performance will assure assigning responsibilities will align with the abilities.
Management Development - Must Have
If you do not have a management training program in place yet, make a commitment to develop one. Your management training program should be designed by the hiring manager, or at least outlined by them. A mix of class room training and study with ample on the job experience is a sound starting point. The program should encompass all aspects of the job that will need needs to perform well, both for managing a team or business unit and for evaluation in order for the trainee to move up.
The program should have a “tiered learning system” approach. This teaches the management trainee skills and operational information and then tests those skills in increasing levels of importance. It should include both the study of management theory, as it relates to the type and level of management, as well as on the job training and experience.
Mentoring is an important technique for management training.
Mentoring is a proven and traditional development technique in which an experienced employee or manager advises a less experienced one on the professional and personal aspects of the job. Mentoring relationships can be formal or informal, and often occur over an extended period of time to maximize the growth of the person. A formal program is one in which the mentor follows a specific set of guidelines and training requirements. The informal type is more on a personal or advisory basis but still aimed at teaching the management trainee the elements of the job at hand.
Coaching is an adjunct to Mentoring
Coaching is similar to mentoring, but the focus is on reviewing the person’s performance and progress within the management development program. The aim is to provide specific advise and coaching on areas where improvement is needed. As with mentoring, coaching is very often an continuing process for the length of the management training program, which helps the trainee adapt to varying situations and meet new challenges as they arise in the workplace. This adds that real world experience that can not always be taught in theory.
Not all companies have, or are large enough to be staffed with, a “training professional. If your organization has one, the manager or executive should discuss effective coaching techniques so the trainee will have the opportunity to grow and succeed in their development after training.
Managers will need to schedule both formal and informal meetings with individual trainees. This provides an opportunity layout follow-up projects or work assignments in conjunction with what trainees been expected to learn in training and the specific areas to focus on next. The training program can encompass suggestions for the manager on performance assignments, such as (in the case of performance management, for example) asking the trainees to evaluate an employees performance n a specific task, creating a performance review, or writing a job description for a specific role on the team. The senior managers must then follow-up and review these assigned tasks, providing training and coaching on key aspects of the assignment.
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