short term thinking

Break Free From the Trap of Short-Term Thinking

It’s easy for training managers to fall into the trap of short-term thinking. However, this approach comes with hidden costs that often outweigh the immediate savings.

Imagine a new hire at a call center. With minimal training, they are quickly put on the job.

In the first week, they encounter irate customers, complex issues, and systems they barely understand. They struggle, falter, and end up leaving customers more frustrated than satisfied. This scene repeats with every call, diminishing the brand’s value with each interaction.

The Investment in Training

Now, consider another scenario where a new hire receives 100 hours of training before they start.

They learn about the product, effective communication skills, and the company’s systems. When they begin taking calls, they do not only resolve issues but also enhance the brand’s reputation. They transform calls into positive experiences, making customers feel valued and heard.

This level of service translates to customer loyalty and positive word-of-mouth, both of which are invaluable to any business.

Short-term thinking isn’t just a problem in customer service; it’s prevalent in sales, technical support, and management roles.

For instance, sales teams with inadequate product knowledge can’t convince customers of the value of what they’re selling. They miss out on closing deals, and worse, they could spread misinformation, leading to customer dissatisfaction and returns.

Technical support is another critical area. Personnel without proper training might provide temporary fixes that fail to address underlying issues, resulting in repeated calls and increased frustration.

In contrast, well-trained tech staff can solve problems efficiently. Proper training reduces repeat issues and helps build trust with customers.

In management roles, the consequences of insufficient training are even more profound. Managers who are not well-trained may make poor decisions that affect the entire team. They could mismanage projects, mishandle team dynamics, or fail to motivate their staff effectively.

Conversely, managers who receive thorough training can lead their teams to higher productivity, better morale, and greater innovation.

A common argument is: Why invest in training if employees might leave? However, this misses a crucial point. What happens if they stay?

Untrained staff who remain become a liability. They burden the company with repeated mistakes and missed opportunities for improvement.

Long-Term Thinking in Action

Recognize that each employee’s growth contributes to the company’s success. A trained software developer can create more advanced products. A marketing professional who understands the newest trends can design campaigns that captivate the public’s imagination and interest.

The responsibility for learning has shifted in recent years. Society and companies used to take charge of professional development; now, individuals must take ownership of their growth.

This doesn’t mean employers are off the hook; they should still facilitate opportunities for their employees to learn and improve.

Training doesn’t end with technical skills. It also includes soft skills like leadership, time management, and problem-solving. An employee who learns to manage time effectively can achieve more in fewer hours.

A team trained in conflict resolution can maintain harmony and productivity even in stressful periods.

Each training session is like a deposit in a bank account of knowledge, accruing interest in the form of increased competence and confidence.

The more you invest, the greater the returns in efficiency and innovation.

Break Free from Short-Term Thinking

Breaking free from the trap of short-term thinking is a strategic move. Commit to cultivating a workforce equipped to handle today’s challenges and tomorrow’s opportunities.

Create a culture where learning is continuous, and training is as regular as any other critical business operation.

By investing in people, organizations can thrive in a competitive and complex business landscape.