Refresher training: Rapid changes in technology may force companies to go in for this kind of training. By organizing short term courses which incorporate the latest developments in a particular field the company may keep its employees up to date and ready to take on merging challenges. It is conducted at regular intervals by taking the help of outside consultants who specialize in a particular area.
Cross functional training: Cross functional training involves training employees to perform operation in areas other than their assigned job. There are many approaches to cross functional training. Job rotation can be used to provide a manager in one functional area with a broader perspective than he would otherwise have. Departments can exchange personnel for a certain period so that each employee understands how other departments are functioning. High performing workers can act as peer trainers and help employees develop skills in another area of operation. Cross functional training provides the following benefits to an organization (and the workers as well) (1) Workers gain rich experience in handling diverse jobs; they become more adaptable and versatile (2) they can better engineer their own career paths (3) they not only know their job well but also understand how others are able to perform under a different set of constraints (4) A broader perspective increases workers understanding of the business and reduces the need for supervision (5) when workers can fill in for other workers who are absent, it is easier to use flexible scheduling which is increasingly in demand as more employees want to spend more time with their families. Eli Lilly and Company (India) for example encourages cross functional movements to make the organization equally attractive to both specialists and generalists.
Team training: team training generally covers two areas: content tasks and group processes. Content tasks specify the team’s goal such as cost control and problem solving. Group processes reflect the way members function as a team – for example how they interact with each other, how they sort out differences, how they participate etc,. Companies are investing heavy amounts, nowadays, in training new employees to listen to each other and to cooperate. They are using outdoor experiential training techniques to develop teamwork and team spirit among their employees (such as scaling a mountain, preparing recipes for colleagues at a restaurant sailing through uncharted waters crossing a jungle etc) The training basically throws light on (1) how members should communicate with each other (2) how they have to cooperate and get ahead (3) how they should deal with conflicting situations (4) how they should find their way using collective wisdom and experience to good advantage.
Creativity training: Companies like Mudra Communications, Titan Industry, Wipro encourage their employees to think unconventionally break the rules take risks go out of the box and devise unexpected solutions.
In creativity training, trainers often focus on three things:
Breaking away: In order to break away from restrictions, the trainee is expected to (1) identify the dominant ideas influencing his own thinking (2) define the boundaries within which he is working (3) bring the assumptions out into the open and challenge everything
Generate new ideas: To generate new ideas, the trainee should open up his mind; look at the problem from all possible angles and list as many alternative approaches as possible. The trainee should allow his mind to wander over alternatives freely, expose himself to new influences (people, articles, books, situation) switch over from one perspective to another, arrange cross fertilization of ideas with other people and use analogies to spark off ideas.
Delaying judgment: To promote creative thinking, the trainee should not try to kill off ideas too quickly; they should be held back until he is able to generate as many ideas as possible. He should allow ideas to grow a little. Brainstorming (getting a large number of ideas from a group of people in a short time) often helps in generating as many ideas as possible without pausing to evaluate them. It helps in releasing ideas, overcoming inhibitions, cross fertilizing ideas and getting away from patterned thinking.