Managing your team’s training on a shoestring

Some leaders do not see training and development as a necessity, but a “nice-to-have”. Therefore, when times get tough, training and professional development is often one of the first to be taken off the list. With an expected budget cut during a downturn, how do we ensure we get the best bet for your money?

Here are 5 tips to stretch your training dollar:

1) Remember, the process of learning also include unlearn and relearn. Learners will not be able to learn without unlearning. Unlearning is more of an attitude, rather than a skill. Hence, focus your budget only on those who are willing with a positive attitude, instead of “wasting” your funds on everyone.

2) Focus on value-add (instead of chasing papers and certificates) to your organisation – Return On Investment (ROI). This is a common expectation. Buyer of learning asks for ROI. Calculating ROI is often cumbersome. Next best? Focus on behavioural change. As you know, financial and business results are directly affected by behaviours. Select vendors that have a track record and methodology for improving workplace behaviour.

3) Use bite-size learning to save time and money. Make schedule that do not take employees’ time away from work, or at least minimise time away from work. A good example will be Lunch and Learn, making use of lunch hour to learn.

4) If you have a large team, ask your trainer to customise and contextualise to your needs. In this way, you eliminate unnecessary training hours in the classroom for your team and focus on critical competencies to the trainees.

5) Leverage technology to save time and money. Mobile learning allows your team to learn anytime, anywhere! You can get quality mobile learning for free! A good example will be It hosts lots of material from very established and well-recognised universities around the world, including the National University of Singapore!

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