Employee training is a common task of safety professionals during their daily work activities. Hours may be spent in development of training materials. Some organizations expend substantial portions of their safety budgets to purchase training materials. Despite the time and funds expended, sessions can be ineffective in influencing worker behaviors. Incorporation of information available via the internet can be used to create more impactful training sessions which result in greater employee engagement in safety training.
In many cases, training involves a routine session that covers regulations, policies, and procedures. Inattention and disengagement of the audience may result from boredom during the session. A component that could be missing is a convincing discussion of why the information is important to the employee. Statistics about workplace accidents and fatalities may be incorporated into the training, but the impact can be minimal if the information is provided without a context and the information does not resonate with the listener.
We can incorporate internet based information into training materials to create customized training sessions that will increase employee interest. When the listeners are interested in the story behind the training, and can identify with the content of the training, the session is more meaningful. This provides a greater opportunity to impact employee behavior.
Much of the safety training conducted today entails a lecture style of meeting. An instructor conducts classroom training, often using presentation software and videos as training aids. Some research shows that lecture and audiovisual styles of training result in limited retention rates for students (National Training Laboratories, Bethel, Maine). These training techniques may fail at engaging employee attention thereby limiting the effectiveness of training sessions. Adult learners are interested in the goal of the training, what they are going to learn, and how the information could impact them personally.