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By Darryl Stewart
What to do when one of your staff is not buying in to training

What to do when one of your staff is not buying in to training

We cannot train someone who is not willing to learn. When I teach leadership topics, there is nothing worse than having someone in the room with their arms crossed and their attitude on. Whether they were forced to come, or they think they know better than me, having someone like that in the room is a drain on everyone’s energy. With a room full of people and the clock running, I simply can’t take the time to deal with that person one-on-one to figure out what the issue is.

Leadership trainer Linton Sellen says that the purpose of training is to train people not to motivate them. If you have a motivation issue when you are training, you need to stop the training and deal with the motivation issue. Otherwise, the training is a waste of time.

The important points here:

  • If you offer group training, give the trainer the authority to ask unwilling participants to leave the room (and encourage them to do so). This will prevent the training from being ruined for others by that one person who has not bought in.
  • If you are training someone one-on-one and they are rolling their eyes or showing other signs of disinterest or cynicism, stop the training and deal with the attitude issue head-on before going any further.

Training is a powerful tool for engaging people. When we offer training and development to someone who wants it in an area of interest for them, we get powerful engagement and effective learning and development. It is important not to let one bad apple screw that up for those who are there to learn. And it’s important not to waste your time trying to train someone who is not ready to learn.

IBEX Payroll extends our profound respect and immeasurable gratitude to all the ancestors and keepers of the land on whose traditional territories our work takes place. We acknowledge that we are on Treaty 1 territory, the traditional gathering place of the Anishinaabe, Cree, Oji-Cree, Dakota and Dene people and the traditional homeland of the Métis people. This land is sacred, historical, and significant. 

Every time we acknowledge this truth, we have an invitation and an opportunity to reflect on the wrongs of the past, what we do in the present, and what we can do to continually honour the people whose lands and water we benefit from today. 

This statement only acts as a first step in honouring the land we reside on and its peoples, and must be paired with education, understanding and informed action.