Wednesday, June 15, 2005

When you are in trouble INCREASE the training budget!!

I have just had a brilliant 'virtual' discussion with my nephew who is a senior manager in a major organisation about their training budget that has been cut.

In my experience this is a typical reaction when companies or organisations are struggling to balance the books.

In 35 years in the National Health Service (NHS) - sad to say - this was a regular tactic to try to achieve balance financially

'Lets' cut the training budget - it is a nice soft option - no one will notice'

My reaction to that - ABSOLUTELY CRAZY.

The time to seek new ideas, new energy is surely at times of crisis or impending crisis just as much as it is when things are going well.

If motivated staff are already concerned about their own future the last thing they want to hear is that training opportunities have been blocked.

It feels to me like a mission statement that reads

"If moral does not improve in this organisation the sackings will continue"

I am a realist.

Financial balance is of course the bottom line so I am not being idealistic here, but if the leaders are really serious about recovery then surely you need a motivated workforce who can and will save you.

To tell people 'We are in trouble' and then say 'By the way, you can help by working harder but we are not prepared to help you develop' seem to be me to be completely opposite positions.

Then we wonder why the company goes to the wall or the organisation continues to be overspent.

Phew - that feels better - thanks James - you made my grey matter work early this Wednesday morning


Rocky said...

I couldn't agree more. Competence builds confidence. It is vital to invest in the competence of the work force. This helps with Morale and consequently productivity. You are right when you say the most important thing is for the books to balance. no business that I know of can survive without capital. however, the investment or the lack of plays a huge role the overall health of the program and the budget. It is often a tough call of what is the right move in these financial decisions, but an investment in your staff and their ability to perform competent work seems important. this is a topic that easily be around discussions for a while and could generate some lively discussion.

Trevor Gay said...

Thanks Rocky - your comments are sound as always.

I hope this subject will generate interest for a wider discussion

Hope you are well my friend.

Annie is doing her 5 km 'Race for Life' (Cancer Fund raising) this evening at 7.30 pm - about 7 hours from now.

Curretnly the rain is coming down -not good weather for running ..... or for ice cream sandwiches :-)

Annie said...

Bart Simpson mentioned eating ice cream sandwiches the other day on TV. Are these eaten in the US? I thought I was the sole eater of this delicacy! My ice cream sandwiches are made from 2 slices of bread with ever-so slightly softened vanilla ice-cream spread in the middle. Not too soft mind, or it goes down your chin.

Oops, I've just revealed that I like to watch "The Simpsons"!

Hi Rocky, sorry to lower the tone of an intelligent discussion. Businesses should invest in training AND treat their staff occasionally.

felix gerena said...

Amen to that, Trevor and Rocky.

Mike said...

Late comment about ice cream sandwiches. Yes, they are eaten widely in the states, but not the same version Annie eats. Ours are not eaten with real bread, but with more of a soft cookie fulfilling that role. Other versions include using real cookies such as large Oreos or chocolate chip types. Ice cream sandwiches here are commercial retail products and not made at home, although I like your idea, especially with thick slabs of home-made bread just warm enough to start melting the ice cream...

Not only should a company increase the training budget when in trouble, they should make that the center of their efforts at renewal, survival, and improvement. Seems logical, but it gets little commitment.

(Yes, it is the same "Mike" of curmudgeonly rep from Dr. TP's blog. I don't know why the TP company hasn't put Trevor's blog on it's blog role. This has better content and is updated regularly, which can't be said for many.)

Trevor Gay said...

Thank you so much my friend for your kind comments about my Simplicity Blog

Maybe you can suggest to Dr TP’s Blog administrators about my Simplicity Blog being shown on their Blog roll – I cannot be so presumptuous to suggest it myself I guess :-)

I am glad you like my Blog – it is very important to me that I keep it topical and interesting so thanks again for your positive comments

Take care – tell me more about yourself Mike – where you are based – what do you do etc. Send me an e mail to this address

Warm regards – keep eating the ice cream sandwiches!

Annie should maybe copyright her ideas for real ice cream sandwiches :-)