Often organisations invest huge amounts in training and development and yet fail to show the expected results. Here are 7 tips to successfully deliver OTJ training (On-The-Job training) lead by a leader.

These tips will help support your employee learning experience to be more effective and easily transferable.  Situations where on the job learning occurs could be up-skilling, transition to a new role, new company learning initiative, new systems or processes being implemented.

When checking these OTJ training tips out, preparation is key to any success.  Apply when applying to learn with an individual and notice the difference in employee engagement, application, and effectiveness of learning outcomes.

Tip 1 – An employee’s development areas are treated as a learning opportunity.

There are different approaches depending on the context of the learning required. Before assigning an employee to undergo any learning intervention, completing a needs analysis is always effective to determine the specific need and learning approach for employee development. This can give you clarity of the right approach, their preferred learning style and most effective process for the employee.

It may be a classroom training, on the job coaching, a cohort experiential group or an assignment that best provide the opportunity for learning.   If you find that an employee is not able to perform on the job, determine whether they have the time and tools needed to perform the job.

Have the right expectations been set for the employee? Find out whether the employee is the right fit for the role. I find often when using the Extended DiSC profiling tool to determine learning approaches and strengths, it can at times provide insight that the person and the role are not a match.   This can cause problems from the outset of a new person in a role is they are not fit for purpose.

Tip 2 – Ensure that you have a list of skills or capabilities that the employee understands they are learning and will be assessed on after the learning.

Tip 3 – Create a context for learning.

It is important to let the employee know why the new skills or skill enhancement is necessary. The employee needs to be made aware of the link between the learning and their job. If the employee recognizes the link, they will engage more with the learning and ultimately the specific outcomes of the learning are accomplished.

“Stretch assignments are the most powerful individual development activities”.

Tip 4 – A learning initiative needs to be relevant to the skills or knowledge the employee can immediately apply in their role.

A better outcome of implementation and sustainability of a learned skill is more effective when designed to meet the employee needs. Identify strong learning leaders in your business who can coach or facilitate new or existing employees or alternatively look at providers who can customize their offerings to match your specific needs.

Tip 5 – All learning must have measurable and specific objectives and outcomes.

As a leader, when training on the job, the delivery works best when designed in such a way that it has clearly stated objectives with measurable outcomes.

Make sure that the learning outcomes can be measured post-learning.    Assessment can be undertaken in a number of ways relevant to the situation.  They can be online quizzes, questionnaires or observation of application by a mentor, learning leader or assessor.  A rating scorecard can be effective in providing coaching and performance feedback.

Tip 6 – The employee will be more prepared and less apprehensive if they are briefed on the training session.

This helps to reduce anxiety about trying something new. This will also allow the employee to focus on the training rather than the discomfort factor.  Pre-learning activity such as reading or reflective exercises in advance of the session encourages the learner to consider their approach in the learning and implementation phase.

Tip 7 – People Leaders have many hats to wear.

Using the fundamental skills and models available to leaders; such as coaching, (G.R.O.W.) facilitating, giving feedback models, using effective language that inspires and encourages; communication;

As a leader, you will set up an environment in which the employee can apply the learning skills and behaviors, feel confident, supported and valued by their leader and company.

“People are motivated to learn when they see the relevance to their real-life situations and are able to apply what they learned as “

Final tip…. Reward and recognize achievement.   It’s essential to provide rewards and recognition on successful completion and application of any learning

Eloise Tzimas


Leadership Mindset and Identity Development; Group Coaching, Workshop Facilitation

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