Choosing the Best Management Training Course

Choose the Best Courses

For a new manager or even an experienced manager looking to increase or improve his or her skills, choosing the best management course should be a fairly personal decision. Management development courses are not one-size-fits all and each person will be looking for a different focus for their learning. Sometimes training decisions are made for a person by their employer, but when the manager is able to contribute to the decision making process, there are some key items to consider. These include the topics of the course, method of delivery, timing of the course, and structure of the course.

The very first thing that should be considered is what the manager hopes to achieve by attending management training. If there are specific improvements they want to work on like improving public speaking or learning how to better manage their employees, this information will help guide them in choosing a specific course to suit their needs. Some people, especially new managers, may feel that they want to learn everything or anything that could make them a better manager. While this may be true, it will not help them select a course. In this type of situation, they should determine what skill needs the most improvement or what skill improvement could have the biggest short or medium-term impact on their career. By having some specific topics in mind, the participants will pick more suitable courses and most likely achieve their learning goals to a greater degree.

Once someone has developed specific learning goals, they will need to determine what the best course delivery method will be. This can vary based on many factors including topic, personal preference and time constraints. For instance, a manager looking to improve her public speaking skills will probably not get the biggest benefit from a self-study course; but someone looking to learn more about management techniques would be able to get this information from self-study materials. There are also topics that could be taught in the classroom, on-line or through self-study. In this type of situation, a person will need to self-identify what type of learner they are and what type of set-up they prefer. Something like time management can be taught in almost any delivery method, so the best method will depend on personal preference or time constraints. For example, a manager attending a web-based learning event can do so right from the office. This can significantly reduce travel time. Utilizing technology to virtually attend classes can also reduce training expenses for the company as well.

The structure of the course or courses is also important to consider. These will be again be dependent on the topics being taught and the preference of the attendee. Some management training programs will contain several days worth of material that can be divided in different ways. For instance, a manager may choose to attend an intensive three day program that has instruction from 8 am until 5 pm with only a break for lunch. The same information may also be taught in a class that meets for 2 hours a week over a 12 week period. Both of these structures can be effective, but one may be more convenient or preferred. Having a course that is spread over time is often helpful when working with soft topics like delegation, time management or leadership. This allows the participants to apply what they are learning and discuss results with the class. More technical items like project management software are often better taught in a condensed format so participants do not have to spend time each class refreshing what they had learned.

As previously mentioned, there is no perfect training course that will work for every manager. Therefore, it is important to be involved or at least provide preference information before a course is selected. This can make the learning experience more enjoyable and effective which will benefit both the manager and the company in the long-run.

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