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5 Signs Your Training Needs an Overhaul

We’ve all gotten to the point where you’re not sure if you just know the training too well, or if something needs to get shaken up. Even the best training ages or a great plan goes awry in execution. So when do you know you need a reality check? We’ve put together 5 signs your training needs an overhaul, so you don’t get stuck in a bad training spin cycle.

1. You Don’t Remember the Point

When you get to the point where nobody remembers the point, it’s time to re-evaluate. It’s easy to start a plan, then get stuck in the weeds on execution. However, when you take a step back, your learning and development department should be able to see the goals and objectives you designed the program to meet.

If you have lost sight of the reason you created the program, it’s time to press pause and work on your training until your goals are well defined. Your training is always going to be more effective and a better return on investment if you have a clear return on investment in mind.

2. Employees See Training as Nap Time

For many, training has a bad rap, and it’s not hard to see why. For years, training consisted of a thick manual that collected dust and a mandatory PowerPoint (or slide, depending on how far back you go) presentation that put everyone attending into a trance.

We know now there are many ways to make training interesting and engaging, whether it’s through simulations, gamification, or a well-planned classroom interaction. But some training programs haven’t gotten the memo. So if you see everyone start to nod off during the training, it’s time to add a little zip to the program. Look into different modalities to see what will have the most impact and interest for your audience.

3. Your Training Uses 30-Year-Old Branding

Sometimes making sure you have up-to-date company branding on your training seems like a low priority in a sea of things to do. However, making sure training looks current and cohesive with your company’s current branding policies isn’t something you can brush off. The way your training looks conveys its importance and credibility to your audience. If you’re using a logo from from two brands ago, your employees will see the training isn’t important enough for the company to keep fresh. Changing the branding is a simple step, but it makes a big difference in showing how important training is to the company.

4. Your Classroom Training is Drier Than the Sahara

When your classroom facilitator is doing a spot on “Bueller? Bueller?” impression at the front of the room, you have a problem. Instructor-led training has come so far from the days of death-by-PowerPoint, and if your training hasn’t evolved with it your employees are likely not absorbing the information they need to.

Start bringing interesting activities into the mix. You can add simulations, role play, games, polling and many other things to get people engaged in your training. And you don’t have to keep it strictly ILT. If bringing a little elearning in to make a blended solution is what will get your audience interested, do it!

5. It’s a Bit Too Trendy

I know we’ve been encouraging you to add some interest to your training, but this comes with a caveat. If your training is getting to the point where it’s just a mishmash of trends, without any cohesion or instructional design at the foundation, you have a problem.

It can be tempting to pull out a gamified, web-based, bite-sized, rich media course on a mobile app when you’re fighting for learner attention. And maybe that is the solution that would work best for your learners. But maybe it isn’t. Don’t let yourself get so carried away in the trends that you lose track of your purpose, your audience, your goals and the company vision.


So the next time you find yourself looking at the curriculum, wondering if it’s fine or if it could be spruced up, revisit this list with an open mind. Think about what you could be doing better, or if you’re already on the right track.

Have you ever had a program that went off the rails? Tell us how you got it going again!