Is it training or something else

My wife, who is about the best trainer I know (other than me, of course), ain’t always that sympathetic when it comes to what is a training need and what isn’t.

Let me explain just a little more.

You see, sometimes people get sent on training because the boss doesn’t know what else to do. My trouble and strife has a test to work out whether something is a training or need or whether it’s actually something else. Here it is:

If the person could the thing they are being trained on with a gun held to their head, then it’s not a training need, it’s something else. If they can’t do it with said gun pointed at their head, then it is training and they have properly been sent on training.

So, let’s go back a stage and think about why, if someone can do something with a gun pointed in their general direction, they don’t do it under normal circumstances.

What can it be?

Well, it can only be that someone is choosing not to do it… in other words, it’s attitudinal and it’s all based on risk and reward.

Remove the risk of being shot and not doing something becomes easier than doing it. Given that it’s probably marginally illegal to threaten your staff, what can you do to make sure you don’t have to send them on a training programme, which will be ineffectual anyway because it’s not needed?


There’s actually a choice to be made. Either you can make it so wonderful for your member of staff to do the thing that it’s a no brainer or you can make to consequences so dire if they don’t do it, it’s a no brainer.

Me? I prefer not to think about it terms of guns and heads. I prefer to think more about burning buildings.

Think about 2 tower blocks, 20 feet apart, connected by a plank of wood, 1 foot wide. You have to walk across the plank. Could you do it? Maybe you’d just do it for fun, but may be you couldn’t do it for anything… unless I offered you £1,000? No? How about a million?

Still no? How about this: the building you are on is fire and your only escape is across the plank of wood. could you do it now?

You see what I mean? Risk and reward.

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