In this method trainees are asked to solve an actual organizational problem. The trainees have to work together and offer solution to the problems. Assigning talented employees to important committees can give these employees a broadening experience and can help them to understand the personality issues and processes governing the organization. It helps them to develop team spirit and work in a united way towards common goals. However, managers should very well understand that committee assignments could become notorious time wasting activities.
The above on the job methods are cost effective. Workers actually produce while they learn. Since immediate feedback is available they motivate trainees to observe and learn the right way of doing things. Very few problems arise in the case of transfer of training because the employees learn in the actual work environment where the skills that are learnt are actually used. On the job methods may cause disruptions in production schedules. Experienced workers cannot use the facilities that are used in training. Poor learners may damage machinery and equipment. Finally, if the trainer does not possess teaching skills there are very little benefits to the trainee.
Off the Job Methods:
Under this method of training, the trainee is separated from the job situation and his attention is focused upon learning the material related to his future job performance. Since the trainee is not distracted by job requirements he can put his entire concentration on learning the job rather than spending his time in performing it. There is an opportunity for freedom of expression for the trainees. Off the job training methods are as follows:
Vestibule training: In this method actual conditions are simulated in a classroom. Material files and equipment – those that are used in actual job performance are also used in the training. This type of training is commonly used for training personnel for clerical and semi-skilled jobs. The duration of this training ranges from a few days to a few weeks. Theory can be related to practice in this method.
Role playing: It is defined as a method of human interaction that involves realistic behavior in imaginary situations. This method of training involves action, doing and practice. The participants play the role of certain characters such as the production mangers, mechanical engineer superintendents’, maintenance engineers, quality control inspectors, foreman workers and the like. This method is mostly used for developing interpersonal interactions and relations.
Lecture methods: The lecture is a traditional and direct method of instruction. The instructor organizes the material and gives it to a group of trainees in the form of a talk. To be effective the lecture must motivate and create interest among the trainees. An advantage of lecture method is that it is direct and can be used for a large group of trainees. Thus, cost and time involved is reduced. The major limitations of the lecture method is that it does not provide for transfer of training effectively.
Conference / discussion approach: In this method the trainer delivers a lecture and involves the trainee in a discussion so that his doubts about the job get clarified. When big organizations use this method, the trainer uses audio visual aids such as blackboards, mockups and slides, in some cases the lectures are videotaped or audio taped. Even the trainee’s presentation can be taped for self confrontation and self assessment. The conference is, thus a group centered approach where there is a clarification of ideas, communication of procedures and standards to the trainees. Those individuals who have a general educational background and specific skills such as typing, shorthand, office equipment operation, filing, indexing, recording etc., may be provided wit specific instructions to handle their respective jobs.