Magazine article Mortgage Banking

Choosing a Training Manager

Magazine article Mortgage Banking

Choosing a Training Manager

Article excerpt

Let's assume that your company has an opening for a training manager, and it is your responsibility to fill it. What is the process you follow to find candidates, and what is the profile of the person you're looking for?

I am going to treat the first question in summary fashion because it is largely prescribed by your company's personnel policies. You will post the position internally, advertise locally - then regionally and perhaps engage one or more search firms. Personally, I advocate using search firms: practically because senior trainers are relatively scarce in our industry, and philosophically because even an exorbitant search fee is cheap compared with the eventual cost of a bad hiring decision.

On to the profile - The first criterion is that your training manager should have the broadest possible (successful) experience as a trainer. In a small company this is obvious, because the training manager will spend much of his or her time doing training. In a large shop this is not the case, but the criterion is still valid for the reason of credibility.

Sales managers of major car dealerships almost never sell a car, but if they can't demonstrate sophisticated sales technique, their staffs believe they are not qualified for their job. Similarly, trainers expect the training manager to demonstrate stellar training skills.

What are training skills? Essentially, trainers perform two functions: they develop training material, and they deliver it. They perform these functions across a spectrum of skill areas that can be subdivided endlessly. I find five sub-headings to be adequate:

* Sales

* Supervisory/management experience

* Computer applications

* Technical (job skills)

* General (customer service, telephone skills and so on)

A strong candidate will have both development and delivery experience in most of these areas.

The second criterion is a moderate amount of varied supervisory or management experience. I say "moderate" rather than "large" because training managers typically manage a small group of professional people. It is not without challenges, but it is generally easier than managing 50 stressed-to-collapse collectors.

Varied experience allows the manager to meet a wider variety of situations with. …

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