Nature Of Training And Development Management Essay

In simple terms, training and development refers to the imparting of specific skills, abilities and knowledge to an employee. A formal definition of training development is… it is any attempt to improve current or future employee performance by increasing an employee’s ability to perform through learning, usually by changing the employee’s attitude or increasing his or her skills and knowledge. The need for training & development is determined by the employee’s performance deficiency, computed as follows:

Training & Development need = Standard performance – Actual performance

We can make a distinction among training, education and development. Such distinction enables us to acquire a better perspective about the meaning of the terms. Training, as was stated earlier, refers to the process of imparting specific skills. Education, on the other hand, is confined to theoretical learning in classrooms.

Though training and education differ in nature and orientation, they are complementary. An employee, for example, who undergoes training, is presumed to have had some formaleducation. Furthermore, no training programme is complete without an element of education.In fact, the distinction between training and education is getting increasingly blurrednowadays. As more and more employees are called upon to exercise judgments and to choose alternative solutions to the job problems, training programmes seek to broaden and develop the individual through education. For instance, employees in well-paid jobs and/or employees in the service industry may be required to make independent decision regarding their work and their relationship with clients. Hence, organization must consider elements of botheducation and training while planning their training programmes.Development refers to those learning opportunities designed to help employees grow.Development is not primarily skill-oriented. Instead, it provides general knowledge andattitudes which will be helpful to employees in higher positions. Efforts towards development often depend on personal drive and ambition. Development activities, such as those supplied by management developmental programmes, are generally voluntary.

To bring the distinction among training, education and development into sharp focus, it may be stated that “Training is offered to operatives”, whereas “Developmental programmes are meant for employees in higher positions”. Education however is common to all the employees, there grades notwithstanding.


The fundamental aim of training is to help the organization achieve its purpose by adding value to its key resource – the people it employs. Training means investing in the people to enable them to perform better and to empower them to make the best use of their natural abilities. The particular objectives of training are to:

• Develop the competences of employees and improve their performance;

• Help people to grow within the organization in order that, as far as possible, its future needs for human resource can be met from within;

• Reduce the learning time for employees starting in new jobs on appointment.


Any training and development programme must contain inputs which enable the participants to gain skills, learn theoretical concepts and help acquire vision to look into distant future. In addition to these, there is a need to impart ethical orientation, emphasize on attitudinal changes and stress upon decision-making and problem-solving abilities.


Training, as was stated earlier, is imparting skills to employees. A worker needs skills to operate machines, and use other equipments with least damage or scrap. This is a basic skill without which the operator will not be able to function. There is also the need for motor skills. Motor skills refer to performance of specific physical activities. These skills involve training to move various parts of one’s body in response to certain external and internal stimuli. Common motor skills include walking, riding a bicycle, tying a shoelace, throwing a ball and driving a car. Motor skills are needed for all employees – from the clerk to the generalmanager. Employees, particularly supervisors and executives, need

Interpersonal skills popular known as the people skills. Interpersonal skills are needed to understand one self andothers better, and act accordingly.

 Examples of interpersonal skills include listening, persuading, and showing an understanding of others’ feelings.


The purpose of education is to teach theoretical concepts and develop a sense of reasoning and judgement. That any training and development programme must contain an element of education is well understood by HR specialist. Any such programme has university professors as resource persons to enlighten participants about theoretical knowledge of the topic proposed to be discussed. In fact organizations depute or encourage employees to do courses on a part-time basis. Chief Executive Officers (CEO’s) are known to attend refresher courses conducted by business schools. Education is important for managers and executives than for lower-cadre workers.


Another component of a training and development is development which is less skill oriented but stressed on knowledge. Knowledge about business environment, management principles and techniques, human relations, specific industry analysis and the like is useful for better management of the company.


There is need for imparting greater ethical orientation to a training and development programme. There is no denial of the fact that ethics are largely ignored in businesses. Unethical practices abound in marketing, finance and production function in an organization. They are less see and talked about in the personnel function. If the production, finance and marketing personnel indulge in unethical practices the fault rests on the HR manager. It is his/her duty to enlighten all the employees in the organization about the need of ethical behaviour.

Attitudinal Changes

Attitudes represent feeling and beliefs of individuals towards others. 

Attitude affects motivation, satisfaction and job commitment. Negative attitudes need to be converted into positive attitudes. Changing negative attitudes is difficult because – 

1. Employees refuse to changes

2. They have prior commitments

3. And information needed to change attitudes may not be sufficient.


 Nevertheless, attitude must be changed so that employees feel committed to the organization, are motivated for better performance, and derive satisfaction from their jobs and the work environment.

Decisions Making and Problem Solving Skills

Decision making skill and problem solving skills focus on method and techniques for making organizational decisions and solving work-related problems. Learning related to decision-making and problem-solving skills seeks to improve trainees’ abilities to define structure problems, collect and analysis information, generate alternative solution and make an optimal decision among alternatives. Training of this type is typically provided to potential managers, supervisors and professionals.

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Companies derive competitive advantage from training and development. Training anddevelopment programmes, as was pointed out earlier, help remove performance deficiencies in employee. This is particularly true when –

(1) The deficiency is caused by a lack of ability rather than a lack of motivation to perform,

(2) The individual(s) involved have the aptitude and motivation need to learn to do the job better, and

(3) Supervisors and peers are supportive of the desired behaviours.

There is greater stability, flexibility, and capacity for growth in an organization. Training contributes to employee stability in at least two ways. Employees become efficient after undergoing training. Efficient employees contribute to the growth of the organization. Growth renders stability to theworkforce. Further, trained employees tend to stay with theorganization. They seldom leave the company. Training makes the employees versatile in operations. All rounder’s can be transferred to any job. Flexibility is therefore ensured. Growth indicates prosperity, which is reflected in increased profits from year to year. Who else but well-trained employees can contribute to the prosperity of an enterprise? Accidents, scrap and damage to machinery and equipment can be avoided or minimized through training. Even dissatisfaction, complaints, absenteeism, and turnover can be reduced if employees are trained well.

Future needs of employees will be met through training and development programmes.Organizations take fresh diploma holders or graduates as apprentices or management trainees.

They are absorbed after course completion. Training serves as an effective source of recruitment. Training is an investment in HR with a promise of better returns in future. A company’s training and development pays dividends to the employee and the organization. Though no single training programme yields all the benefits, the organization which devotes itself to training and development enhances its HR capabilities and strengthens its competitive edge. At the same time, the employee’s personal and career goals are furthered, generally adding to his or her abilities and value to the employer. Ultimately, the objectives of the HR department are also furthered.

The Benefits of Employee Training

 How Training Benefits the Organization:

• Leads to improved profitability and/or more positive attitudes towards profit orientation. Improves the job knowledge and skills at all levels of the organization

• Improves the morale of the workforce

• Helps people identify with organizational goals

• Helps create a better corporate image

• Fosters authenticity, openness and trust

• Improves relationship between boss and subordinate

• Aids in organizational development

• learns from the trainee

• Helps prepare guidelines for work 

• Aids in understanding and carrying out organizational policies.

• Provides information for future needs in all areas of the organization

• Organization gets more effective decision-making and problem-solving skills

• Aids in development for promotion from within

• Aids in developing leadership skills, motivation, loyalty, better attitudes, and other aspects that successful workers and managers usually display

• Aids in increasing productivity and/or quality of work 

• Helps keep costs down in many areas, e.g. production, personnel, administration, etc.

• Develops a sense of responsibility to the organization for being competent and knowledgeable

• Improves Labour-management relations

• Reduces outside consulting costs by utilizing competent internal consultation

• Stimulates preventive management as opposed to putting out fires

• Eliminates suboptimal behaviour (such as hiding tools)

• Creates an appropriate climate for growth, communication

• Aids in improving organizational communication

• Helps employees adjust to change

• Aids in handling conflict, thereby helping to prevent stress and tension.

 Benefits to the Individual Which in Turn Ultimately Should Benefit the Organization:

• Helps the individual in making better decisions and effective problem solving

• Through training and development, motivational variables of recognition, achievement, growth, responsibility and advancement are internalized and


• Aids in encouraging and achieving self-development and self-confidence

• Helps a person handle stress, tension, frustration and conflict

• Provides information for improving leadership, knowledge, communication skills and attitudes

• Increases job satisfaction and recognition

• Moves a person towards personal goals while improving interactive skills

• Satisfies personal needs of the trainer (and trainee)

• Provides the trainee an avenue for growth and a say in his/her own future

• Develops a sense of growth in learning

• Helps a person develop speaking and listening skills; also writing skills when exercisesare required. Helps eliminate fear in attempting new tasks.

Benefits in Personnel and Human Relations, Intra-group & Inter-group Relations and Policy Implementation:

• Improves communication between groups and individuals:

• Aids in orientation for new employee and those taking new jobs through transfer or promotion

• Provides information on equal opportunity and affirmative action

• Provides information on other government laws and administrative policies

• Improves interpersonal skills.

• Makes organizational policies, rules and regulations viable.

• Improves morale

• Builds cohesiveness in groups

• Provides a good climate for learning, growth, and co-ordination

• Makes the organization a better place to work and live


Figure below outline important steps in a typical training process:


 Needs assessment diagnoses present problems and future challenges to be met through trainingand development. Organizations spend vast sums of money (usually as a percentage onturnover) on training and development. Before committing such huge resources, organizations would do well to the training needs of their employees. Organizations that implement training programmes without conducting needs assessment may be making errors. For example, needs assessment exercise reveal that less costly interventions (e.g. selection, compensation package, job redesign) could be used in lieu of training? Needs assessment occurs at two levels-group and individual.

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An individual obviously needs when his or her performance falls short of standards, that is, when there is performance deficiency. Inadequacy in performance may be due to lack of skill or knowledge or any other problem. The problem of performance deficiency caused by absence of skills or knowledge can be remedied by training. Faulty selection, poor job design, uninspiring supervision or some personal problem may also result in poor performance. Transfer, job redesign, improvingquality of supervision, or discharge will solve the problem. Figure below illustrates theassessment of individual training needs and remedial measures.

Needs assessment methods

How are training needs assessed? Several methods are available for the purpose. As shown inthe below table, some are useful for organizational-level needs assessment others for individual needs assessment.

Methods and Techniques of Training:

A multitude of methods of training are used to train employees. The most commonly used methods are shown in Table #2. Table #2 lists the various training methods and presents a summary of the most frequent uses to which these methods are put. As can be seen from Table #2, training methods are categorized into two groups-{I) on-the-job and (ii) off-the-job methods. On-the-job methods refer to methods that are applied in the workplace, while the employee is actually working. Off-the-job methods aroused away from workplaces. Training techniques represent the medium of imparting skills and knowledge to employees. Obviously, training techniques are the means employed in the training methods. Among the most commonly used techniques are lectures, films, audio cassettes, case studies, role playing, video-tapes and simulations.

The following presents the list of training techniques along with their ranking based on effectiveness. The higher the ranking (1 is the highest rank), the more effective the technique is.

At this point, it is worthwhile to elaborate on important techniques of training. We explain thefollowing-lectures, audio-visuals, on-the-job training, programmed instruction, computer aided instruction, simulation and sensitivity training.


Lecture is a verbal presentation of information by an instructor to a large audience. The lecturer is presumed to possess a considerable depth of knowledge of the subject at hand.

The method violates the principle of learning by practice.

 It constitutes a one-way communication. There is nofeedback from the audience.. Continued lecturing is likely to bore the audience. To break the boredom, the lecturer often resorts to anecdotes, jokes and other attention-getters. This activity may eventually overshadow the real purpose of instruction. However, the lecture method can be made effective it if is combined other methods of training.


Visuals Audio-visuals include television slides, overheads, and video-types andfilms. These can be used to provide a wide range of realistic examples of job conditions and situations in the condensed period of time. Further, the quality of the presentation can be controlled and will remain equal for all training group. But, audio-visuals constitute a one-way system of communication with no scope for the audience to raise doubts for clarification. Further, there is no flexibility of presentation from audience to audience.

On the job Training (OJT)

Majority of industrial training is of the on-the-job-training type.OJT is conducted at the work site and in the context of the job. Often, it is informal, as when an experienced worker shows a trainee how to perform the job tasks.OJT has advantages. It is the most effective method as the trainee learns by experience, making him or her highly competent. Further, the method is least expensive since no formal training is organized. The trainee is highly motivated to learn he or she is aware of the fact that his or her success on the job depends on the training received. Finally, the training is free from an artificial situation of a classroom. This contributes to the effectiveness of the programme.

OJT suffers from certain demerits as well. The experienced employee may lack experience or inclination to train the juniors. The training programme itself is not systematically organized. In addition, a poorly conducted OJT programme is likely. to create safety hazards, result in damaged products or materials, and bring unnecessary stress to the trainees.

Programmed Instruction (PI)

This is a method where training is offered without theintervention of a trainer. Information is provided to the trainee in blocks, either in a book of thought a teaching machine. After reading each block of material, the learner must answer a question about it. Feedback in the form of correct answers is provided after each response. Thus, programmed instruction (PI) involves:

Presenting questions, facts, or problems to the learn

Allowing the person to respond

Providing feedback on the accuracy of his or her answers4.If the answers are correct, the learner proceeds to the next block. If not, he or she repeats the same.

Case Study:

is a written description of an actual situation in business which provokes, in the reader, the need to decide what is going on, what the situation really is or what the problems are, and what can and should be done. Taken from the actual experiences of organizations, these cases represent to describe, as accurately as possible, real problems that managers have faced. Trainee studies the cases to determine problems, analyses causes, develop alternativesolutions, select the best one, and implement it. Case study can provide stimulatingdiscussions among participants as well as excellent opportunities for individuals to defend their analytical and judgment abilities. It appears to be an ideal method to promote decision-making abilities within the constraints of limited data.

Role playing:

generally focuses on emotional (mainly human relations) issues rather than actual ones. The essence of role playing is to create a realistic situation, as in case study, and then have the trainee assume the parts of specific personalities in the situation. For example, a male worker may assume the role of a female supervisor, and the supervisor may assume the role of a male worker. Then, both may be given a typical work situation and asked to responds they expect others to do. The consequences are a better understanding among individuals. Role playing helps promote interpersonal relation. Attitude change is another result of role playing. Case study and role playing are used in MDPs

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Vestibule Training:

Utilizes equipment which closely resembles the actual ones used on the job. However, training takes place away from the work environment. A special area or a room is set aside from the main production area and is equipped with furnishings similar to those found in the actual production area. The trainee is then permittedto learn under simulated conditions, without disrupting ongoing operations. A primaryadvantage of vestibule training it relieves the employee from the pressure of having to produce while learning. The emphasis is on learning skills required by the job. Of course, the cost of duplicate facilities and a special trainer is an obvious disadvantage. The advantage of simulation is the opportunity to ‘create an environment’ similar to real situations the manager incurs, but without the high costs involved should the actions prove undesirable. The disadvantage is

it is difficult to duplicate the pressures and realities of actual decision-making non the job and

 Individuals often act differently in real-lifesituations than they do in acting out a simulated exercise.

Sensitivity Training:

Sensitivity training uses small numbers of trainees, usually fewer than12 in a Group. They meet with a passive trainer and gain insight into their own and others’ behaviour. Meeting have no agenda, are held away from workplaces, and questions deal with the ‘here and now’ of the group process.


There are many impediments which can make a training programme ineffective. Following are the major hindrances:

 Management Commitment is Lacking and Uneven

Most companies do not spend money on training. Those that do, tend to concentrate on managers, technicians and professionals. The rank-and-file workers are ignored. This must change, for, as a result of rapid technological change, combined with new approaches to organizational design and production management, workers are required to learn three types of new skills:

the ability to use technology,

the ability to maintain it, and

The ability to diagnose system problems. In an increasingly competitive environment, the ability to implement rapid changes in products and technologies is often essential for economic viability.

 Aggregate Spending on Training is Inadequate

Companies spend minuscule proportions of their revenues on training. Worse still, budget allocation to training is the first item to be cut when a company faces a financial crunch.

 Educational Institutions Award Degrees but Graduates Lack Skills

This is the reason why business must spend vast sums of money to train workers in basic skills. Organizations also need to train employees in multiple skills. Managers, particularly at the middle level, need to be retrained in team-playing skills, entrepreneurship skills, leadership skills and customer-orientation skills.

 Large-scale Poaching of Trained Workers

Trained workforce is in great demand. Unlike Germany, where local business groups pressure companies not to poach on another company’s employees, there is no such system in our country. Companies in our country, however, insist on employees to sign ‘bonds of tenure’ before sending them for training, particularly before deputing them to undergo training in foreign countries. Such bonds are not effective as the employees or the poachers are prepared to pay the stipulated amounts as compensation when the bonds are breached.

 No Help to Workers Displaced because of Downsizing 

Organizations are downsizing and de-layering in order to trim their workforces. The government should set apart certain fund from the National Renewal Fund for the purpose of retraining and rehabilitating displaced workers.

 Employers and B Schools Must Develop Closer Ties

B Schools are often seen as: responding to Labour-market demands. Business is seen as not communicating its demands to B Schools. This must change. Businessmen must sit with Deans and structure the courses that would serve the purpose of business better.

Organized Labour can Help

Organized Labour can play a positive role in imparting training workers. Major trade unions in our country seem to be busy in attending to mundane issues such bonus, wage revision, settlement of disputes, and the like. They have little time in imparting training to their members.


Action on the following lines needs to be initiated to make training practice effective:

1. Ensure that the management commits itself to allocate major resources and adequate time to training. This is what high-performing organizations do. For example, Xerox Corporation, in the US invests about $ 300 million annually, or about 2.5 per cent of itsrevenue on training. Similarly, Hewlett-Packard spends about five per cent of itsannual revenue to train its 87.OC: workers.

2. Ensure that training contributes to competitive strategies of the firm. Different strategies need different HR skills for implementation. Let training help employees at all levels acquire the needed skills.

3. Ensure that a comprehensive and systematic approach to training exists, and training and retraining are done at all levels on a continuous and ongoing basis.

4. Make learning one of the fundamental values of the company. Let this philosophy percolate down to all employees in the organization.

5. Ensure that there is proper linkage among organizational, operational and individual training needs.

6.Create a system to evaluate the effectiveness of training. (Evaluation of training has been discussed above.)


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