For many women clothes shopping is a treat and a joy. Not for me. Take away the fact that I have to do it with kids in tow, or in a very short timescales, but I still get little joy. This is for two reasons: first being that I am short, and the second being that I am the perfect size 11. It is so hard to find clothes that fit me well. I either have to buy size 12, which makes me feel slim, but also tends to hang quite shapelessly, and not look that great. I can squeeze myself into a size 10, which is great for the ego and looks fine as long as I’m standing up and breathing in. Buying skirts that are too long isn’t necessarily a problem, especially now the longer lengths are in fashion. The downside of this is I can’t get along length dress that doesn’t drag on the floor!
I’m currently in the middle of redesigning an induction programme for Warburtons in conjunction with Instep UK. I’m delighted to be involved in this project and (for those of you who have taken a closer look at the website) you will notice that induction training is one of the things that I specialise in. Indeed last year we worked with Kellogg’s on their Foundations Programme, and in the past I have worked with retailers, manufacturers, and call centres on their inductions.
Induction training is a huge passion of mine. People are taking the first steps an exciting new career. They have let go of the security and familiarity of their previous job where they were probably highly competent, well-known and comfortable. Now they are taking a step into the unknown.
At Keystone Development, every single training solution we create is bespoke. Yes, we do actually write every training course from scratch. We believe that a bespoke approach aids the transfer of learning, which is what training should be about. (See our previous blog for more on this!) That doesn’t mean that every single page of every workbook, or every single case study or activity is 100% unique. Of course from time to time we do use some materials more than once. However we NEVER simply rebadge a course and sell it to someone else as some training consultancies do.
I confess that today I’m having a bit of a professional crisis. Keystone Development is founded on the design of detailed, brain friendly, practical and complete training solutions. We’ve always felt that our job is to provide a seamless link between what is in the client’s head, and what actually get delivered in the training room regardless of who delivers that training, when or where.
Times are tough for the small business, we know that. During these times it’s natural to focus energy on sales and cost-cutting, and things like marketing and training are often the first things to be sacrificed. But, even though formal training now feels like a luxury you can’t afford, it’s more important than ever to keep on learning. Learning makes us more creative, more efficient, and more professional. So how can we keep on learning when there simply is no budget for training?
It’s a very busy time of year for us all. I’d been feeling pretty overwhelmed recently when it suddenly hit me that it was only 6 weeks until the schools broke up for Christmas. This gave me a pretty definitive deadline for finishing all my work projects, and having Christmas organised. I also wanted the hall, stairs and landing (that we’d started decorating 6 months ago) finished in time for the festive period.
I was cooking a favourite family meal the other day, spaghetti bolognese. Everybody likes spaghetti bolognese but all of us make it slightly differently. True, we all make it based on the same key ingredients, but somehow everyone’s tastes slightly different… and of course, ready-made sauces in jars rarely taste as good.
As someone who specialises in bespoke training design, is important to me that any training I design truly fits the organisation and has an excellent transfer back to the workplace. Public or standard training workshops can of course be very useful, but it is easy for people to dismiss a lot of the content simply because they can’t immediately see how it relates to their environment, or ‘feel’ right to them.