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7 training program mistakes, and how to fix them

By Todd Liles November 14, 2014 7 training program mistakes, and how to fix them
7 training program mistakes, and how to fix them

A classic mistake is to build a training program around the desires of the coach, not the needs of the techs.  This happens daily in the hvac and plumbing world, and it is a mistake.  The training program you build should be done with the specific needs of the hvac technician or plumber in mind.

I understand you may desire to increase the average ticket of your tech.  That makes sense, and an increase is good for everyone.  The issue is, “How do you program to get that increase?”

The wrong training program will actually make your averages fall, not rise.

I was reminded of this in one of my recent CrossFit classes.  I heard a coach say the following in the middle of a program:

I hate this deload sh*t!  It’s too chill for me.  I need to get pumped up.

A “deload week” occurs at the end of a strenuous cycle of 2 to 3 months.  It is basically a week of light work and rest.  These weeks are critical for the nervous system to reset, and for the muscles to take a break.  Without these weeks, many athletes will never progress.  They get stuck in their current position, and never grow.

That attitude and training method is about the coach, not the student.

Service companies make this training program mistake all the time.   

The great news is, it’s easy to get refocused on your team and their needs.

7 ways to build a training program for your techs, and not for you

#1 – It’s about them, not about you.  This is tough to accept, because you are a leader.  You feel like you have to burden the load of responsibility, and therefore you design training for you.  Techs and plumbers don’t think like you.  They are not in your position.  Design a training program for them.

#2 – Do the work before you ask them to do it.  Many coaches love to train, but never do the work.  You need to do the work.  I’m not talking about running service calls, I’m talking about role-playing and scripting.  If you are going to ask them to do it, run it through a time or two first yourself.

#3 – Have some fun.  Don’t be scared to laugh and have fun.  Take a week where you just play games.  These moments say, “You are doing good.  You are making progress.  Let’s deload.”

#4 –  Have a plan that is individually goal focused.  Great coaches understand that people have different needs and desires.  Community coaching is great, but each person needs to know what they are working towards.  He needs to be able to see that the training is for him.

#5 – Break your training programs up by position.  This certainly requires more time, but the payoff is worth it.  Every player on a football team has a coach for his position.  They may get their focus from the head coach, but it is the line coach that helps them get those tackles.

#6 – Train on the fundamentals.  Chances are, your skills are more advanced then the team you are leading.  It is easy for you to stop coaching the fundamentals that you know so well.   However, this is not about you!  Your people still need the fundamentals, and need to know that it is normal!

#7 – Use other coaches.  There will come a time when the best thing you can do is get your team member a new coach.  People learn and grow in a changing environment. 

When the training program is not about you, but your people, your team will grow to new levels.

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