It was the easiest training session Performance Contractors Project Manager Larry Jasek’s field leaders had ever encountered, and it took about two minutes to complete.
Called FLIP, (short for Field Leadership Initiative Program), Performance’s new training method is a fast and effective way to bring leadership development materials straight into the hands of employees. Literally. The modules are delivered directly to smartphones.
FLIP officially launched in March, and will now be disseminated twice a month to Performance’s field leaders across multiple sites. The two- to three-minute training videos cover a range of helpful topics, including how to be a better leader, best practices on the job site, and soft skills, like communicating effectively, managing time, and staying organized. Topics also include refreshers on safety procedures, and how-to instructions on company policies and procedures. The goal, say organizers, is to build the leadership capacity of field managers.
“We want to set our teams up for success and give them the skills and confidence to make good decisions,” says Jasek.
A text alert signals that a new training module has dropped, and is available to view. One click later, and all field leaders can view a short video packed with helpful information.
“It’s super valuable to have all field leadership on the same page,” says Jasek, whose team helped test FLIP. “The format is fast and efficient. These guys are not behind a desk or at a computer, but every one of them has a cellphone.”
While FLIP is specific to Performance, it’s part of an innovative mobile training trend that brings educational modules seamlessly to employees. More and more, this method is seen as a frictionless alternative to time-consuming, face-to-face workshops. Thick binders aren’t required when you have a smartphone.
“This medium is the way people learn these days,” says Corporate Training Manager Kenny Derouen, “Just think about how many times we all turn to YouTube for instructions on how to do things. Everyone likes information in short, convenient bursts.”
Since the beginning of the project, President and CEO Kevin Courville has been passionate about getting FLIP off the ground.
“We’ve got teams in 15 different states, and to have the ability to customize training modules and disseminate them consistently to all our field leaders, is amazing,” Courville says.
“What we’ve created supports our belief that what’s good for our employees is also good for our customers.”
The program has been designed internally with input from field leaders, who routinely give feedback and make suggestions on future topics. The videos aren’t the only component of the program. Each one comes with a summary document that makes it easy for leaders to ask their teams follow-up questions about video content. And to make sure employees are staying up on their FLIP viewing, the video completion rate is tracked in the company’s Learning Management System (LMS).
“The follow-up component is another really important part of FLIP,” Derouen says. “It allows our field leaders to build stronger one-to-one mentoring relationships with their team members.”
“And that’s what this program is about,” Derouen continues, “building talent and enabling each employee to meet their potential.”