Keep training simple. Consistent. Reinforce your training. Encourage those who aren't the best with tech. Tech helps keep up with modern times— making better connections with people.

We got to sit down with Denise Morales from a large QSR Brand to talk about switching from paper to digital training. Denise has been with  her company for nine and half years. She started as a training manager in 2013 and has worked her way up to her current position, National Field Trainer, in 2019.

Some best practices that Denise has in place have two core values: consistency and simplicity. Most digital training within the company is under 15 minutes. These microtrainings are scientifically proven to increase engagement and retention, even more so when properly reinforced [1]. When training is short, concise, and deployed from a mobile app, the learning process is sped up. It evades mental fatigue.

Denise also acknowledges that not all individuals are confident with technology and expresses that “this is their time to shine.” The more complicated something is, the less engagement the company is going to receive from its pieces of training. This also makes new hire training easy for the trainer and the trainee. The faster someone feels welcomed and prepared, the quicker they will be able to perform their duties [2].

Making Training Inclusive

Training across four generations is hard, but with the support, encouragement, and the right tools, those who did not grow up with a smartphone in their hand will succeed. A way to ensure inclusivity in this way is to evaluate your goals for that specific trainee. Providing training that is applicable to each individual lessens the learning gap between generations.

Why is this important? Data provides us with evidence that the higher the employee engagement, the more likely they will not only succeed but will also be more productive, be a high performer, and less likely to voluntarily leave the company. The same data shows us that companies with high employee engagement have fewer “no call no shows” and fewer accidents [3]. Conversely, disengaged employees cost the US between $450-$550 billion a year.

Technology is also a significant factor in workplace culture. Denise goes on to explain that the right tech helps keep up with modern times and helps make better personal connections. She gives the example of a generation moving into their first positions. The technology and influence that they’ve had are moving the company forward. Content is easier to consume and retain, while meaningful connections are easier to facilitate with the touch of a button.

Lesson to Future Professionals

Some advice she left us with for future L&D professionals is to remember that "you don’t need to know everything. It's something we tell new hires all the time—you won’t remember everything right away." Learning takes time, but somehow this is lost on ourselves. Learning and Development professionals put so much pressure on themselves to know everything. "Training directors feel they need to know the answer to every question immediately, but that takes time and may never happen. That's okay. It is a common sentiment heard in the community, it's time everyone heeds that advice."