And what an epic battle it is….
Operations Managers with a strong track record of achieving the unachievable. Strong willed characters who have no problem facing down the barrel of a gun regardless of who is wielding it. Often strongly opinionated and immovable, these frustrating characteristics are paradoxically what make them great Operations Managers. They thrive on pressure and stress. No one else would dare put the hand up to do their job, and boy don’t they know it! They hold enormous political clout and respect at all levels but behind the scenes, management play a clever “cat and mouse” game to ensure operations remain uninterrupted at all costs but at the same time achieve all the other necessary requirements such as Health & Safety compliance.
When it comes to decommissioning 12 of their operations people at a time to do classroom training of whatever subject however, the whole thing turns into a strange case of Jekyll and Hyde. Ask for those same 12 people to disappear for a day or two and they start to froth at the mouth and turn into what I call a well balanced person (that’s someone with a chip on both shoulders). Operations Managers definitely understand the importance of health and safety, but you can’t expect him/her to meet demanding targets without a full compliment of staff. That’s before you ask for the same staff again next week too!!
Do you know what, they are dead right. Health and Safety training is seen by all as a necessary but highly disruptive activity on day to day operations. eLearning is a far easier and much more cost effective way to achieve higher compliance. In one recent example, Dulann were able to gain over 2,100 operational hours for a client that spent just €250 per month.
Now of course eLearning is not for everyone or indeed for every company. It is only for those that want to achieve competitive advantage, reduce costs and increase compliance.
The amount of time that “Health and Safety Managers” spend trying to organise traditional classroom training with operations is typically something that is farcical. There is a big emphasis on the word “trying” here. I wouldn’t mind but that scheduling process in itself typically results in rows, disagreements and a low turnout at training sessions. The answer always seems to be that we will run it again next month, and catch up!! You know what they say about “If you always do what you have always done, then you will always get, what you’ve always …..”
That is before we get into the whole area of highly qualified and educated health and safety personnel spending a huge portion of their time training the same material over and over again to an audience who aren’t particularly interested to start with. Exactly what they went to college for!!! Surely if they wanted to be teachers they would be teachers! Despite the exceptional teaching skills of some of our health and safety managers, the reality is that we all know the level of engagement at this type of learning, particularly after an hour or so. This type of exercise becomes more of an ass covering, box ticking exercise than anything else. It’s an important ass covering, box ticking exercise but that’s what it becomes nonetheless.
Well the good news is that there is a much more efficient way. eLearning allows Health and Safety Managers the ability to free up a huge amount of their time to focus on higher “Value-add” activity. No we arent advocating sacking them, just letting them get on with the job they love and the job that they are paid to do. At the same time it allows Operations Managers to conduct training at a time and place that suits operations. Interactive, self paced and self directed eLearning actually increases memory retention and compliance.
There doesn’t have to be a loser in this battle. Why not start your compliance and efficiency journey now by visiting dulann.com. We don’t bite! (normally).
Dulann is a provider of technology-enabled learning solutions for many of the world’s leading organisations. Services include Product & Process Simulations, Contractor Inductions & Employee Onboarding, Mandatory & Commercial Training, Contractor Management & Learning Management Systems.
About Damian Donlon.
Damian is a Non Executive, Senior Consultant, Interim Manager and Talent Adviser with specialist experience in the Construction & Technology sectors. Please feel free to contact him directly on 0879218616 for a confidential conversation.