Mailing Systems Technology - October 2010 - (Page 8)
Real Life Management
With Wes Friesen
Developing Your People: The Key to a Successful Team
“The only thing worse than training employees and losing them is not training them and keeping them. —Zig Ziglar ”
HR experts make a distinction between training (improving people’s skills in their current job) and development (improving skills for future roles). Both training and development are essential and can be interrelated. We train and develop our people though a two-step process: Education — “learning what to do” Application — “doing what you learned” the latest technology; ability to network with peers, vendors and industry experts; and the stimulation to go back home and move your operation to a higher level of excellence. Some may say they can’t afford to attend a conference — I would say how can you afford not to?
trade associations like MsMa (Mail system Management association) and pccs (postal customer councils)
I belong to MSMA and my local PCC and encourage you to do likewise — and have some of your team members join you. Trade associations provide opportunities for learning, networking and professional development. Volunteering to serve in your local chapter further enhances the benefits to you and your organization by deeper networking and leadership development.
Following are 15 speciFic tools we can use to train and develop our people:
As a long-time university instructor, I can attest to the value of having your people take classes to broaden their knowledge and sharpen their basic skills. Whether a person is degree-oriented or not, taking classes in management, operations, human resources, finance, information technology, etc. provides an educational foundation that enhances a person’s ability to excel at doing real work back at the workplace.
professional certification programs
Pursuing certification programs is a great way to challenge yourself and deepen your understanding of the field. My four supervisors have six certifications among them, and the majority of the Printing & Mail Services department is certified. Key certifications related to the mail industry are the “Certified Mail Systems Distribution Manager” and “Mail Piece Design Consultant” (refer to msmanational.org) and the “Executive Mail Center Manager” and “Mail Piece Design Professional” (see usps.com).
Larger companies often have in-house classes available on a variety of useful topics. Work with your HR folks — and don’t be bashful in suggesting classes that would be of value to people on your team and throughout the organization.
recurring team Meetings
Many teams meet on a periodic basis for information sharing purposes — which is good. However, there is an opportunity to add an education component to some of these recurring meetings. You or team members can report out on learning from conferences and local trade association events. You can invite subject matter experts from other parts of your company to do presentations — I have used experts from Finance, HR, Customer Service and various operational areas to help educate us. Training videos are also a great resource for team meetings.
external seminars & webinars
There are a number of companies (e.g. Fred Pryor, Career Track, Skill Path, AMA) that offer one- or two-day seminars on useful topics ranging from working with vendors to time management to dealing with difficult employees. There is also an increasing number of free or low-cost webinars available covering a wide range of topics. I build in dollars in my budget to cover some classes for employees, and I urge you to do so too.
Participating in conferences like National Postal Forum and MailCom is a great investment and has many benefits. I am actively involved in conferences and get some of my people involved because nothing matches the opportunities at a good conference: ability to learn best practices from the top leaders and practitioners in the industry; ability to learn and see in action
off-site training days
For concentrated learning, taking people away from the work site for a one-half or full day training session is unbeatable. I have offsite training for entire teams that often focuses on team building skills in additional to technical training. We have quarterly off-site meetings for my supervisors and leads that focus on leadership and management training.
OCTOBER 2010 a www.MailingSystemsTechnology.com
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Mailing Systems Technology - October 2010
Mailing Systems Technology - October 2010
From the Source
Mailing Industry Takes a Hard Hit
The New Economics of Color Print
The New Generation of Direct Mail
Avoiding the Fall-Out
Pushing the Envelope
Mailing Systems Technology - October 2010