Managing People at Work Implementing Training


The employees in any company will feel motivated and remain committed to a company if the company is ready to meet the training and developmental needs of its employees. In this case the DIY supermarket chain is presently facing the issue of employee turnover that too at a very high level i.e. 80%. The increased employee turnover is mostly due to the dissatisfaction of the workers in the organization. This dissatisfaction can be due to various reasons including the factors of motivation since the morale of the employee is also low. It is seen that the lady staff are not happy with the behavior of their young supervisors who are youngsters. It is also seen that the supervisors do not receive sufficient training on time so that they can improve their work habits. Some of the important issues that can be pointed out as the reason for employee turnover is the lack of motivation, improper behavior of the supervisors as well as the instability of their jobs as the staff are all part time employees. Some of the issues can be solved by way of training and thus reducing the turnover ratio.

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Employee training and employee development are two different but related aspects of Human Resource Management. Employee is training is mostly provided to enhance and improve the skills of the employees that will help them solve their present skills requirement. While, employee development is concerned with additional skills and competencies that the employees are provided so that the company can use it to meet its future needs (Decenzo, 2009). Companies also carry out many career development activities that will help the employees pursue their career goals and gain the core competencies to focus on their career development. Whenever the employees of an organization are properly motivated and provided the right kind of options for growth, the employees will be more committed and innovative. The training and developmental activities are made possible by way of the process of learning. Learning is the process of bringing about any kind of desired permanent change in the behavior of the people as a result of training and other activities (Rainey, 2009). One of the important topics to be discussed in this juncture is the social learning theory which describes the different ways in which learning occurs in an organization.

Following steps need to be followed before deciding upon the training in an organization:

Analyzing the training needs in the organization, in this case training for the young supervisors and the lady shop floor staff.

Identifying the right kind of training, Behavioral and motivational training in this case.

Implementing the training methods to bring about learning and change in the organization

Evaluation- in this step the results are analyzed to understand if the desired results have been obtained and taking steps to sustain the change and reinforce the learning.

Training need analysis

From the analysis it is seen that shop floor supervisors who are young males are exhibiting improper behavior towards the shop floor lady staff, who are being pushed around by these supervisors.

Another result obtained by need analysis the decreasing morale of the lady staff and their increasing turnover percentage. The employees are leaving the organization which can be due to lack of motivation, ill behavior from the part of supervisors, and job insecurity etc.

Thus both the above situations in the supermarket need proper training so that the issues can be resolved permanently.

Training requirement identified

Two most important type of training, needs to be given to the employees of the supermarket. One is the behavioral training for the supervisors and motivational training to the staff. The different learning theories play key role in developing a framework for the managers in identifying and analyzing the key behavioral issues (Mullins, 2005).

Behaviorist theories and behaviorism provide important insights into the understanding of the behavior of the employees. Also provides a means to rectify the unwanted behavior and inculcate desired behavior by way of learning. The supervisors of the supermarket need to be trained as to how they should behave with the lady staff. This can be done by appointing a professional trainer who can teach the young supervisors and improve upon their behavior. The supervisors can be trained with the help of various methods like role playing and social interaction, so that they will act out the situation that actually happens in the supermarket and can be made to understand the ill effects of their behavior. A professional trainer will be able to train them in such a way that they understand that they need to behave well towards the lady staff and others and that the turnover in the company is also due to their ill behavior. The supervisors can be given the behavioral periodically so that the learned behavior is reinforced and it becomes a habit.

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Apart from giving training, employees need to be encouraged to behave well at the workplace; this is possible using the Operant conditioning theory of learning by B.F Skinner. Operant conditioning is based on the idea the behavior in people are due to the various stimuli in the environment (Skinner, 1954). He pointed out that an individual will learn a desired behavior if he is rewarded for the same. The individual tends to repeat the desired behavior since he has been rewarded once before and similarly an unwanted behavior can be removed using punishments. Thus punishment and rewards are two kinds of stimuli to which the individuals respond thus resulting in operant conditioning. In this particular case the supervisors can be made to behave in the desired way by punishing them for the unwanted behavior. The supermarket authorities can set a system where the ladies can complain if their supervisors behave badly and giving apt punishments to the supervisors for this. This will help remove the ill behavior of the young male supervisors. Apart from this proper training can be provided to them related to the expected behavior and those who practice it in the workplace can be rewarded for the same. Reward in the form of prize money or recognition etc. will help in reinforcing the favorable behavior among shop floor supervisors and result in the learning of that particular behavior.

Another most important issue obtained as a result of the training need analysis is the deteriorating morale of the shop floor staff and the increasing employee turnover. The major reasons identified are:

80% of the staff are part time employees

Many of them are older ladies

The younger male supervisors pushing them around

Maslow's need hierarchy theory and Herzberg's theory of motivation can be taken into consideration while analyzing this case. According to Maslow (1954), humans have different hierarchy of needs, mainly:

Psychological needs: sex, hunger

Safety needs-Security, stability

Social needs- be loved, sense of belonging

Esteem needs-Self-respect, respect from others

Self actualization- meeting higher needs

If the staff of the supermarket is leaving the organization and their morale is low then it is due to the fact that their safety needs, social needs and esteem needs are being properly taken care off. Employees will feel committed towards the organization only if their needs are met. In this case the lady staff is mostly part time workers, thus they do not have a sense of security in the company, and also there is risk of losing the job. The behavior from the supervisors are in such a way that they are fed up the way they are being treated, also they do not get enough respect from the people in the company including the supervisors even thought they are younger staff. All these aspects from the case can be related to the needs in Maslow's theory and confirming that the staff is not motivated and that their morale is down, thus resulting in the 80% turnover.

Another theory of motivation by Herzberg can also be studied in order to understand the issue at DIY supermarket chain. Herzberg (1959), developed a theory which says that there are motivators and hygiene factors. Hygiene factors are those which if absent will create job dissatisfaction, and if present will not motivate the employee eg.  company policies, interpersonal relations, working environment, salary etc. While, motivators are those which when present will motivate the employees of the organization, motivators include recognition, achievement, work itself, responsibility, and advancement. The motivators will bring about job satisfaction and motivation and thus will help improve the performance of the employee. In the case supermarket staff it is seen that their morale is down because there is the absence of certain hygiene factors as well as motivators. They are not happy with the interpersonal relations in the organization; their work environment is also not satisfactory because of the harsh behavior from the supervisors and their part time job also is a factor. Since their hygiene factors are not being clearly looked into there is job dissatisfaction as a result of which their morale is low and thus high turnover.

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In order to motivate the staff and bring back their morale the company should provide them certain motivational training. Orientation training to its employees both supervisors and staff and icebreaking events will help them mingle with each other thus improve interpersonal relations. Team building training can also be provided that will help them work as a team and complete their team effectively. Training them to how to behave in a team and work in a team will be the best possible solution in developing relationships among themselves and the supervisors. Since the staff-supervisor ration of 1:8, the supervisor and staff under him can work as team in doing their work efficiently. The company should also ensure that their work is recognized and good work is rewarded which will motivate them to work and make them remain committed to the organization. In order to elevate the morale of the staff the company should ensure that their work is properly recognized and they are being respected and rewarded. Working as a team will help both staff and the supervisor work together and respect each other.

Implementing the training methods

In order to provide training to the employees, being the HR manager of the company I would suggest the following plan. Professional trainers need to be brought who will be able to train them efficiently and thus bringing about change in the behavior and attitude of the employees. In order to carry out the training effectively the trainer also requires training materials and things. The cost incurred for all this is considered in the table below.

Training course Table

Training given to:

Training type




Behavioral training

2 days every month for initial 6 months, 2day training once in 6 months



Motivational training

2days every 2 months


Staff and supervisors

Team building training

Once in 6 months


DIY supermarket chain is losing £1500 on each employee who leaves the organization and nearly 80% of the employees have left thus making huge losses for the company. If the company spends some money in order to train its employees then the company can save £1500 on each person. If the company goes according to the above mentioned training plan wherein it has to spend only £2700 totally for 6 months and very less thereafter to train its staff and supervisors, company will be able to save huge sum of money as well as retain its employees. Training evaluation is also essential to ensure that the training provided is yielding the desired results.

Training and development are important aspects in any organization since the employees will be able to contribute well towards the company only if they are trained to do their work efficiently. The employees also need to be constantly motivated in order to ensure that they are satisfied with their job and that they remain committed towards the organization. This will help them bring more innovation and make the organization grow.