Conferences and continuing education are big business across America. According to the presentation, “Redefining Measurement for Continuous Learning” given by Todd Tauber at Bersin’s IMPACT 2014 conference, $150 billion per year is spent by American businesses and organizations in staff conferences and training. The average spent per employee per year was $1,200, with tech businesses leading the way at $1,847 per year per employee.
In Fortune magazine’s annual list of “100 Best Companies to Work For” they state that these “Best Companies” have a 65% lower voluntary turnover rate than other companies in general. While that arises from a number of factors, training and development play a big part in it.
The blog, “How Top Companies Make The ROI Case For Employee Training” at skilledup.org (from where these stats come) quotes Todd Tauber to say, ““In essence, learning and development is at the core of what high impact performing organizations do.”
The same is true for non-profits and churches. But in many cases, staff members are sent to conferences and training and nothing that they learned is shared with their peers. Great ideas go unimplented (or at least unexamined for implementation) because of what I call “conference siloing”. (Benefits and insights are enjoyed by part of the team in one silo, but kept from the rest of the team because they are in a different silo).
For several years I asked my staff to fill out and share with all staff a Conference Report Form. Often, we would ask for a (brief) verbal report at staff meeting to go along with the written report.
A side benefit is that staff go to trainings knowing that they will be expected to bring ideas and insights back from the workshop/conference. That piece of accountability is helpful in keeping staff from seeing conference time as vacation time to do what they want. The organization is paying their way, they need to bring back tangible benefits from the training. If not, either that training should not be attended in the future, or the staff person should have to justify future training requests and what they will get out of it.
The attached form is not the exact form that I used with staff, but is one that I have updated and improved (IMHO). I have left it in Word format (rather than converting it to pdf as I usually try to do) so that you can directly take it and type into it.
Click on the link to find the Conference Report Form
Please put any questions or comments in the comments section below.
Reference: “How Top Companies Make The ROI Case For Employee Training” retrieved at http://www.skilledup.com/insights/how-top-companies-make-the-roi-case-for-employee-training.
Got a good, non-copyrighted, form that you have found useful? Send it to me and if I find it useful, I’ll post it and credit it to you! cal@calhabig(dot)com.