Career File: Elaine Code

This
month Elaine Code Trainer at Primary International
Age “In spirit, 30-something.”

How
long have you been in training?
About 10 years.

How
long have you been with your company?
One year.

What
does your role involve?
Primary International provides travel insurance products and packages for
the travel trade and insurance brokers. I’m involved in training travel agents in
product knowledge, providing training kits for our clients’ trainers and
supervisors and providing in-house IT training.

What
is the best thing about your job?
There is plenty of variety and it feels good to be in the position of
imparting knowledge.

What
is the worst things about the job?
There really aren’t any!

What
is your current focus?
Learning our bespoke computer programmes and ensuring everyone has basic
skills in Windows, Word and Excel.

Preferred
terminology?
Development. Some people are turned off by the word “training”, simply
because they think it will take time. What many people forget is developing
skills saves time and inevitably helps both the individuals and the company. We
should all be developing constantly to move forward; we cannot lag behind and
stand still.

Are
you good at self-development?
I think so. I love learning and gaining knowledge. I never believe in
standing still – life is too short to pack everything in, but you have to have
a go.

What
self-development have you done in the last six months?
Because I use DTP in my work I have been studying graphic design and
Photoshop. I am now desperately searching for time to learn more about the
various software packages I use.

Where
do you want to be in five years time?
Developing training events. In previous jobs I have been involved in
organising events for companies such as Virgin Holidays, Golden Wonder and
Motorola. I would like to develop training experiences that consist of
imparting knowledge, experience, and virtual experience of situations, combined
with fun.

What
was the most useful course you ever went on?
Holway Associates interested me in the fun element of using a game format
in training. It is a great way of ensuring travel agents read a brochure or
policy for themselves in a relaxed and informal manner. I also attended a
two-day train-the-trainer course by Office Associates – the emphasis was on IT
training and the trainers flew in from the States. They were excellent.

What
was the worst course you went on?
I tend to remember the good times. I learn something from every course and
I honestly cannot remember a “worst” one.

What
did you want to do when you left school?
I didn’t really know. My worst subject was maths and I approached three
banks for work, all of which said yes!

What
was your first job?
I worked in a bank. It was pretty boring and I left to travel around Canada
and the US.

What
was the best career decision you every made?
Accepting a job with Pegasus Holidays/Saintseal Travel. It was a great
company to work for and provided plenty of opportunity to learn new skills and
retain my fluent Italian. They also introduced me to long haul travel and I
worked as a rep in St Lucia.

What
was the worst career decision you ever made?
Spending a year in a job that didn’t offer me any new skills. Most of the
time was spent firefighting to avert disasters.

Which
of your skills do you most value?
IT. It is the way of the future and without it you cannot survive. Good
people skills are important but you mostly gain that from experience and I
gained plenty working as a rep/tour leader.

How
many minutes is it since someone senior in your organisation said “people are
our greatest assets”?
The senior management are very people-oriented here. There is a great
atmosphere. We often have nights out together at events such as football,
karaoke or bowling.

Evaluation
– holy grail or impossible dream?
One strives for holy grail, but sometimes lack of access to the people or
time makes it an impossible dream.

How
do you think your job will have changed in five years’ time?
Technology never stands still so there will no doubt be more developments
on that side.

What
do you think the core skills for your job will be in the future?
People skills will always be required for training, plus the ability to
keep up with new technology in the workplace.

What
advice would you give to someone starting out in training and development?
Always be open and willing to try out new ideas.

If
you could have any job in the world, what would it be?
Organising events for a charity – I love organising and enjoying the buzz
of seeing a successful event, plus it would be good to be able to help a worthy
cause.

What
is your motto?
Help others and enjoy life.

Describe
your management style in three words.
Enthusiastic and lively.

How
would you like to be remembered by your colleagues?
As a caring person who contributed to the success of the company.

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