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Training: Corporate Versus Open Training

Training: Corporate Versus Open Training

In my many years of experience as a trainer, I have organized both corporate trainings and open trainings. Should an HR Manager opt for an open training or organize one inhouse?

As an HR or Training Manager, it is your duty to plan the training and development of your staff. Should you choose open training, corporate training or both? This is the question some HR Managers have asked me. First of all, for the purpose of clarity, I will quickly explain what I mean by each term.

A corporate training is one organized for the members of staff of a particular organization. The class may be made up of

  1. Members of staff of one one particular department
  2. Members of staff of 2 or more departments
  3. All the staffs of the organization

A corporate training can hold in the premises of the recipient organization. It can also hold in a neutral venue such as a typical training venue or in the conference hall of a hotel.

However, an open training is one that is organized for the general public. People have to register from various organizations and learn together. While some organizations sponsor their staff to attend these human capital development events, many do not. Some staff members take it upon themselves to bear the cost of sending themselves for these trainings. While some organizations have a policy to refund what their staff spend on formal personal development after a stipulated period, others do not.

Advantages of Corporate Trainings

  1. The staff get to learn together and share knowledge they can all follow each other up on.
  2. A new culture that will favour the growth of the organization can be stylishly introduced if the facilitator is skilled. We watch out for this at The Learning Edge corporate trainings.
  3. The cost per individual can drastically reduce since its a “bulk purchase”, especially if the it is also hosted in the premises of the organization.
  4. The HR Manager and the management of the organization will have the opportunity to discuss what they expect to achieve (apart from improving competencies) from the training with the facilitator. It might be an idea, a new way of thinking and so on.
  5. It is a very good opportunity for the members of staff to get know each other more and that will in turn help to foster better and stronger teams.
  6. The staff members will have something to be thankful to the organization for.

Advantages of Open Trainings

  1. It is an opportunity for the staff to network
  2. The staff is able to learn what best practices are in other organizations. Given the opportunity they might attempt to implement same in your organization.
  3. The staff will likely learn something that will help them to perform better on the job.

The balance

Both training methods have many disadvantages. For example, if the facilitator is not skilled, the staff members might not be able to “see outside the box” in a corporate training. And also, an open training can expose the staff to get poached by another organization. The solution to the latter is to have a conversation with the participant and pay a percentage of the fee if you can. Another solution is to send at least 2 people who are not friends to the same open trainings.

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