In today’s fast changing environment, a vital factor of survival for any organization is its ability to support a competitive advantage. In order to do this, organizations must develop its employees so that they are able to take responsibility for their production, to solve dilemmas, to work in groups, and to obtain skills that transfer across professions. Maintaining a competitive advantage begins with an extremely motivated and knowledgeable workforce to produce higher quality products at lower costs. To obtain the best result of improving skills and knowledge from training, both trainers and trainees need help from human resource development (HRD) professionals. HRD is a practice that combines training, organizational development, and career development efforts to encourage improvement of individual, group, and organizational performance. Its purpose is to enhance employee performance and productivity, which leads to employee and customer satisfaction and an increase in the profitability of the organization.
Attitudes and Job-Specific Skills
How an employee will perform on the job relies primarily on the employee’s general attitude and job-specific skills. Many organizations place their focus on filling positions with people who have the specific skills and experience that relate to the position they are seeking to fill. However, it is often easier to train employees for the skills they lack rather than getting them to adopt positive attitudes toward their jobs, coworkers, managers, and the organization in general.
Research suggests that employers today are more concerned with mastery of soft skills rather than technical skills. Soft skills such as communication, problem solving, and team work are becoming increasingly important for the efficient performance of an organization. In addition, organizations are focusing on finding employees who show kindness, respect, and dependability. Employees are first hired for their attitudes and soft skills, and then the organization is responsible for providing training for the skills necessary to perform the job efficiently and accurately.
Organizations that provide training for job-specific skills can then focus on finding employees with positive attitudes who can then be trained to perform their jobs efficiently and accurately.
By Shirley J. Caruso, M.A., Human Resource Development