Developing Criteria for Training

Communication is not only about words, but, more importantly, your actions. Identify the behaviours you and your senior team need to demonstrate to positively reinforce that you are committed to your vision. At the same time, identify the behaviours that would contradict your vision and cast doubt or cynicism over your commitment. The key part of a leader’s role is to produce and passionately articulate the vision for their team and company. These tools help you hone your leadership skills increasing you communications and influence over those that take your message forward. The ability to ask good questions and listen fully will help you develop the criteria for training.
Understanding the task before you:

It is vital to spend some thinking time, really appreciating what the jobs and tasks that make your company work, are currently doing:

i) You may know the job, you may have held the job yourself, but with the rate of change impacting on us all, you cannot make assumptions about what they find easy/hard and the systems and constraints placed upon them.

ii) Remember – they are not you and when you did their job you did not have you as a manager. Its always a good idea to obtain feedback on your performance, also.

What do I want? 

This will produce a concise definition of why you are undertaking this now

What is your core goal? Do you know the specific areas in your company that need attention?

  • what we found in different companies was the least likely employees had a very good handle on the current needs of the company
  • they clearly understood the value of good customer service and we’re dedicated to delivering that
  • they had key areas of concern around being able to deliver that
  • they often experienced times of real pressure and were unable to deliver the service they knew the company and the customer wanted
  • they didn’t know who they could talk to, and many were nervous about making suggestions
  • where are your employees stressed, or overturn of employees high? what’s affecting them?
  • are these interpersonal issues, communications challenges, lack of resources, what is going on in these areas right now?

What are your sales doing? Are they increasing market share? is it a fault of sales, marketing or perhaps distributor? Where are the blocks?

what is your current sales model? are the sales team cross-purposed and helpful towards each other? who is your top salesperson? are they adding new producers each year, or just targeting their existing book that doesn’t grow the business? do they use Criteria based selling models? what sales training has the company provided them in the past decade?

Remember to focus, here on why the job exists and not on what the person does. We often tell people what we do (“I fix machinery”) or what our job title is (“I’m an Engineer”) but we do not state why our job exists, which is the vital one (“I keep the plant operating”).

Once the job purpose is clear, you can then identify five or six areas in which results must be achieved if the job purpose is to be fulfilled. These are the broad areas within a job that change little from year to year. Everyone’s job can be broken into key result areas.

For your area of the company, some considerations might be:

Design of solutions * Delivery of solutions * Evaluation of solutions * Budgets * Client satisfaction

These are key areas that often require training solutions to improve the company communications and allow natural leaders to move forward

Sales * New business acquisition * Territory management * Customer care * Lead generation * Lead follow up (internal and external) * Account management * Customer retention * Interpersonal skills * Negotiating skills * Product knowledge * Sales forecasting

Shop & Technical staff- critical to maintaining good customer service

Stock control * Maintenance * Labour relations * Waste Reworks * Productivity * Health and Safety * Quality control * Recordkeeping

Marketing – necessary for the development of new clients

Advertising * Promotional strategy * Pricing Market research * Field support * Marketing materials * Media relations * Sales support

Secretarial, Clerical and Administrative

Correspondence * Filing Records Management * Administrative support * Internal customer relations * Equipment maintenance * Forms administration * Scheduling Supply maintenance *Purchasing * Telephone coverage * Project support

Finally, key result areas for everyone in an organization are:

Personal development * Professional development * Internal and external customer satisfaction * Public relations * Communication – oral and written * Interdepartmental relations * Project management

Once the key result areas have been established, you can then set specific objectives for individuals within each accountability area.

How Should Goals and Targets be Agreed?

The value of objectives lies in making it clear what the staff member is to achieve during the period. To ensure the objectives are clear, they should be:

within the staff member’s control
realistic in terms of skills and experience
important and not simply easy to measure

A method to ensure that goals and targets are of good quality is to use the SMART model:

SMART  GOALS (we provide these for assessment) 

Specific – Goals and targets should have a clear link to the organizational plan.

Measurable – All goals and targets should contain something to measure them by. The measurements should be quantitative and qualitative.

Agreed – Both parties need to agree to the objective. It should not be imposed.

Realistic – The realism should be in terms of the abilities and potentials of the individual coupled with the needs of the organization. The measures should be attainable within the required time period and with the resources available

Time-bound/testable – The objectives should be achievable within an agreed timescale.

Objectives should be measured in output

If you cannot measure an objective for an individual, you must ask the question: Why does the role exist at all? Here are some ideas about measurable:

Qualify – based on departments and job assigned

Number of units produced/published/sent/received/processed/deadlines * Calls per hour/day/week * New products introduced * Grievances per 100 employees * Staff turnover * Customer complaints and compliments * Error rate or reworks * Returned goods * Sales increased * Profit increased * Increase in market share


Variance against budget * Dollars spent * Profit * Waste * Overtime incurred * Speed


Deadlines and schedules met. * Projects completed per week/month etc.


Accuracy * Customer satisfaction * Repeat business * Mistakes * Reworks/repairs

Therefore you know have your criteria for training

Key Result Area    =

Objective              =

Measure               =

Taking the time to consider these aspects of the company and what you want to create through the training modules, will achieve the highest results

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