championing change in training

Champion Innovation in Training

Training managers often face a fork in the road: stick to the tried-and-true, or innovate for better outcomes. While tradition offers comfort, innovation promises progress.

We hear some argue, “Why change what works?” But there are always those who challenge this by asking, “Can we do this better?”

Many resist new methods in training due to the comfort of familiarity. It’s easier to follow a known path than to blaze a new trail. But comfort can lead to complacency.

That’s why we must question whether current practices will serve us in the evolving workplace.

When Old Methods Hold Us Back

A programming language learned five years ago may now be obsolete. A customer service approach that worked before the age of social media may no longer resonate.

For example, a company that neglects to train its staff in new CRM software will likely see a dip in customer satisfaction. That’s because employees struggle with outdated systems.

Or consider the sales team that is still pushing features of products rather than solving customer problems. Why? Because their training didn’t evolve with market needs. They miss sales targets. They generate less revenue. They’re selling in a way that no longer fits the customer’s world.

Recognizing the Roots of Resistance

Resistance often comes from what people believe about change. Is it fear, comfort, or a lack of understanding?

Old beliefs may say that training is a cost to cut, but this can lead to stunted growth and missed opportunities.

Addressing the Root Causes

There are many reasons why people resist innovation in training. People do not always accept what’s good for them. And they have “nice” reasons for each.

Allow me to share with you four common causes of resistance to change and what can do about it.

Lack of Understanding and Communication

When people don’t understand the benefits of new training methods, resistance is natural. It’s our responsibility to communicate these benefits effectively.

We need to change our approach to explaining why and how the innovation will improve their work or skills. Simplify the message, use relatable examples, and ensure continuous dialogue.

Resistance due to misunderstanding signals a need for us to enhance our communication strategies.

Comfort with the Status Quo and Fear of Loss

Many individuals prefer the known comfort of existing methods, fearing the loss of familiar benefits. It’s important to acknowledge the advantages of the current system while highlighting the greater benefits of the new approach.

We should clearly communicate how the new training methods will not only retain but enhance the positive aspects they value in the current system.

Ease the fear of losing the comfort they’re accustomed to.

Fear of Inadequacy

The introduction of new training methods can be intimidating. This fear of not being able to adapt can lead to resistance. It’s essential to provide support and reassurance.

For example, I met a subject matter expert who refused to use games and immersive learning experiences. He has nothing against this change. But he felt inadequate so he refused.

A dynamic trainer refused to use immersive play in public speaking because he shines at presenting. And he confessed that he does not know how the program works and how he will play his role. (I persuaded him to try it, and he said that it was his best experience in a long time.)

Recognize this fear. Offer additional training, resources, and mentorship to help individuals feel more confident and capable of handling the new system.

Addressing this fear directly and showing empathy towards their concerns can significantly reduce resistance.

Perceived Threats to Job Security

Innovations in training can sometimes be perceived as threats to job security or current roles. This fear can lead to significant resistance.

It is crucial to openly address these concerns. Ensure employees understand that the innovation aims to enhance their skills and not replace them. Reassuring them about their value in the organization and the role they will play post-innovation can help mitigate these fears and reduce resistance.

Embracing Training Innovation

Training innovation means using new ways to teach and develop skills. It’s crucial for organizations that want to stay ahead and be competitive. With innovative training, businesses make sure their employees are skilled, flexible, and prepared for future challenges.

Why is training innovation important?

The world changes quickly, and old training methods often can’t keep up. New training styles adjust faster to changes in technology and job needs. They make learning better and more interesting, helping people learn important skills.

Embracing innovation is about keeping up with today and getting ready for tomorrow. As jobs change, people will need new skills. Innovative training helps employees face today’s tasks and tomorrow’s opportunities. It creates a culture of ongoing learning and growth, which is key to lasting success.

Training innovation also leads to happier and more loyal employees. When workers get training that’s engaging and works well, they feel important and capable. This not only makes them work better but also makes them want to stay with the company. Employees who see their company investing in their growth are more likely to stay and contribute positively.

Embracing training innovation is being proactive. You make your team ready for the future and show you value your team.

It is important to align training innovation with business strategy. Learn about how strategic learning transforms organizations.

Five Cutting-Edge Innovations in Training

Training and development have evolved significantly, introducing innovative methods that enhance the learning experience. These innovations cater to various learning styles and needs, making training more effective and engaging.

Immersive Learning Experiences

Immersive learning goes beyond just using technology like VR and AR. It involves creating environments or scenarios where learners can fully engage with the material. This could be through role-playing, simulations, or interactive workshops.

These experiences allow learners to practice skills in realistic settings, leading to better understanding and retention.

Deep dive by reading Embracing Practical, Hands-on Learning Strategies.


Microlearning breaks down information into small, easily digestible pieces. It often uses short videos or quick quizzes. This method is perfect for busy schedules as it allows learning in short bursts, making it easier to remember and apply the knowledge.

Mobile Learning

With most people using smartphones, learning has become more accessible. Mobile learning lets people study anytime, anywhere. This flexibility means learners can fit training into their day whenever it suits them best, leading to improved engagement.


Adding game elements to training makes learning fun and interactive. Points, badges, and leaderboards turn learning into a game, increasing motivation. Gamification encourages friendly competition and teamwork, which helps in remembering and using what is learned.

AI and Personalization

Artificial Intelligence tailors training to each learner’s needs. It analyzes performance and adjusts content to match the learner’s pace and style. AI also gives instant feedback, making learning more efficient and suited to each individual.

These innovative training methods are changing how we learn and grow in our professional lives. They make training more enjoyable, adaptable, and relevant to our modern world.

Real-Life Applications for Improved Training

Imagine a call center where reps are trained not only on handling calls but also on using customer feedback to improve products. Or a design firm where regular workshops on the latest software upgrades keep designers at the forefront of their field.

In marketing, a shift toward data analytics training can turn a traditional team into a powerhouse of insight-driven strategy.

And in manufacturing, up-to-date safety and efficiency training can mean the difference between a good safety record and a great one.

Quantifying the Benefits of Learning

Training can yield quantifiable benefits. For instance, after a company introduced a new e-learning program for its engineers, project error rates fell by 25%.

Another company revamped its management training, leading to a 30% increase in employee engagement scores.

A Call to Action for Training Managers

Training managers must lead by example. Advocate for learning as a cornerstone of company culture. Show that the company values its people by investing in their development.

By doing so, your organization can navigate a complex business landscape with agility and confidence.