Training your employees is necessary for the long-term success of your small business. Whether your staff is new or has been around since your start, they will need to be prepared to handle the day-to-day operations. But if you’re on a budget, how do you accomplish that? We have some ideas for inexpensive training strategies below!
Weekly or Monthly Lunch Sessions
Periodically, host a lunch session for your employees where you educate them on a different facet of your business. Also, to encourage engagement, ask one employee to share about how they contribute in their role.
Online Training Courses1
Utilizing online training courses is an innovative way for your employees to learn a wide array of subjects at their own pace. Many courses are inexpensive, and with enough research you could also find some that are free. To get you started, visit Learning Tree, Dale Carnegie, BizLibrary and Business Training Institute.
Cross-Train Your Staff
Did you know nearly 70% of small businesses have five employees or less?2 In order to foster a productive and agile workplace, give your staff new roles and responsibilities regularly. This way in an employees’ absence they will be able to pick up the slack without second-guessing themselves or their abilities.
Trade or Industry Association
Many industry associations offer free training programs and events for their members — both online and in person at seminars. Check their website regularly and subscribe to their monthly newsletters in order to take full advantage of their training opportunities!
A simple and inexpensive method to train your staff is to partner new employees with experienced employees. Their role as a mentor will be to train the staff with critical aspects of the position and also to give them tips on communication, professionalism and other useful office skills. By allowing experienced individuals to teach newcomers, you also instill a sense of leadership in your trusted staff members!
Seminars & Conferences
We know that you likely cannot afford to send all of your employees to a seminar or conference, but can you send just one? There are events held monthly in nearly every industry to teach innovative methods, cutting-edge solutions and offer tips on strategy. Send one of your employees to attend one of these events and organize a presentation when they return to share the knowledge they gained with their staff.
1Beesley, C. (9 October 2012). 8 tips for training your small business employees on a budget. Retrieved June 15, 2015 from https://www.sba.gov/blogs/8-tips-training-your-small-business-employees-budget
2Entrpreneur.com. (n.d.). Small business at a glance. Retrieved June 15, 2015 from http://www.entrepreneur.com/sbe/glance/