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Training in the sign industry

Sam Armstrong, product sales director of Make it Happen and technical committee member BSGA, discusses the value of training in the sign industry

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Training can help us to understand a process that is totally relevant to what we to and to our end product

The value of training

In Signlink November’s Soapbox, we looked at the value of training generally and asked why bother? Assuming that we agree there is a value in training, I thought it would be interesting to look at the detail and ask some questions to support the assumption. Is there a general company profile that fits—perhaps a particular size of company or number of staff? Is training of value to every business, both new and established? What kind of people need training; juniors, apprentices, middle management?

Does size matter?


If training is a valuable tool, what kind of a company could benefit from utilising it; corporations, small businesses, individual operators? One could argue that large corporations have internal training programmes and an infrastructure, which negates the need for a specific training entity; that smaller businesses, lacking in the resources necessary for these things, have the greater need.

Training can explore a specific skill, something we know of, but never thought we could actually learn for ourselves and provide that opportunity

Established corporations, often have many years of experience to draw from. Experienced staff have worked their way through the business over a number of years, learning new skills as they develop into new roles; all within the support of a structured management system. Smaller companies however, may have less experience to draw from, as lesser structured management system and often less resource both financially and operationally. Does this mean that the small business needs training and the large corporate does not?  

Actually, size does not matter. Experience has shown that any business can benefit from incorporating training into their organisation and there is a very good reason for this, they all need people to make their business happen, irrespective of the size of their operation.

What is the value?

It is the people in the organisation that justify the value of training; because people have needs, needs that if encouraged in the right way, can maximise personal and business potential. People need support; to feel part of a team, but to be allowed to express their individual ideas and visions. To be given opportunities and to be shown a clear path that they can be part of; one that they can achieve milestones on, along the way. To grow their knowledge and add their skill sets; not just for personal benefit, but for the benefit of the business they are part of. Here are the opinions of two chief executive officers:

“What happens if we invest in training our staff and they leave?”

“What happens if we don’t and they stay?”

It is not about which is right or wrong, but more that both have a potential to impact the business.


Training is a valuable tool for people and for the businesses that they are part of; it can have a direct impact. It is flexible and can be modelled to suit a small group of individuals, or a room full of people.

Training can focus on a product; something new and ground breaking or something we have been working with for years, except it is presented in a new way—maybe at a different angle that creates possibilities we never thought of.

Training can explore a specific skill, something we know of, but never thought we could actually learn for ourselves and provide that opportunity.

Training can focus on a product; something new and ground breaking or something we have been working with for years, except it is presented in a new way

Training can help us to understand a process that is totally relevant to what we do and to our end product; something we talk about every day and touch on in every sale we make, but we don’t have the first clue about the detail.

Sometimes it can just be an opportunity to share ideas. The possibilities are endless. The true value of training is that is modular; it can be built to suit the needs of a business and maximise the benefit across a variety of levels as a result.  

Who needs training? 

The short answer is that we all do. People who don’t think they could benefit from training, will probably benefit the most and here is why: Training is not just relevant to developing or enhancing a particular skill. While it does provide an opportunity to add to a persons’ skill sets, CPD points for example, it can do much more than that. When we open ourselves up to training, we can share ideas and push our boundaries, we do more than just develop our skill sets, we develop as people.


Training is not just relevant to developing or enhancing a particular skill

We challenge our communication skills, we may even dip out of our comfort zones and get a buzz from doing so; it might sometimes feel uncomfortable, but there will be a sense of achievement and most importantly, other people to share it with. We may get the opportunity to listen to something from another perspective, a new perspective; the perspective of another person who we might not ordinarily have the opportunity to meet, or the inclination to listen to; and we might learn something from it.

We can all benefit from training because it provides us with a unique opportunity to develop skills and further our knowledge at multiple levels. When we stand still, nothing changes and when nothing changes, we stop challenging ourselves and we become complacent and when these things happen to us and our staff, this reflects on our business.


We can all benefit from training because it provides us with a unique opportunity to develop skills and further our knowledge at multiple levels



Training can be of value to everyone in any business; in fact, based on what we know, perhaps we should invest in training and make it part of our business strategy ongoing.

After all, our business is successful as a result of the people that we rely on, at every level, to make it happen. Right?


Public Notice:

  • Training can be an opportunity to share ideas
  • A sense of achievement
  • People justify the value
  • A potential to impact business



Make it Happen is a signage consultancy offering training sessions,
www.makeih.co.uk

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