Ed Moran talks about how he got into training and the qualities that are needed to make a success of it. And, what he learned from the trainer who gave up on a session.
How old are you and where do you work?
I’m 37 and work for Reed Personnel Services (RPS). I operate from our Northampton head office, but travel around our UK offices. RPS is the specialist recruitment arm of the Reed family of companies.
What does your job involve?
I ensure that all of our employees, known as co-members, are provided with industry-leading learning and development opportunities. My team works closely with operations to identify learning needs, and we then create, deliver and evaluate learning programmes. I also encourage staff to engage in what Alec Reed, our founder, calls “life-long learning”, so the courses available to them can range from advanced sales skills to learning a new language.
How many courses/events do you organise over a given period?
Last month, I oversaw 38 separate training events, totalling 472 delegate training days. Average course capacity running at 90%.
What course/training are you working on now?
A new three-year training programme for all consultants. It is designed to give consultants the skills they need as their career grows, and for that reason it is delivered in modules.
How and why did you get into training?
I joined RPS in late 1999 as a recruitment consultant. I always got a kick out of passing on my experiences to others. My then manager suggested I go for the position of trainer that was advertised on the company intranet.
What’s the best or most memorable training event you’ve attended?
I recently attended a negotiation seminar for recruitment professionals. Negotiation is something I thought I was good at, but I found this seminar very refreshing as it introduced me to new ideas, and that’s always enjoyable.
And the worst…
I attended a presentations training course. The trainer was late, arrived without the handouts, and the PowerPoint presentation would not work. After an hour of struggling, the trainer decided the course could not go on. Still, I learned something fundamental about training – preparation is essential, as is a back-up plan.
How do you measure the impact of training?
Each course we deliver is designed so that delegates set themselves post-course objectives. We ensure these objectives are measurable, and that they can be easily built into co-members monthly reviews – this helps us measure the relevance of the course to operations. The training team will then follow up to see if objectives were met and, if not, to understand why so that we can revisit the training material to make any improvements needed.
When you were younger, what did you want to be?
I won some competitions for writing, so I thought I would become a famous author.
What career advice would you give to someone setting out in training/L&D?
You need lots of patience, energy, confidence, enthusiasm, a thick skin and an open mind.
Ed Moran, training and development manager at Reed Personnel Services