Ongoing Staff Training at Your Marine Business
Whether it’s a marina, boatyard, boat dealership or any other business that supports the marine industry, the value of ongoing employee training will help your business. According to the Association for Talent Development, companies that offer comprehensive training programs have 218% higher income per employee than companies without formalized training. It’s a critical part of running your business in order to retain employees and have increased efficiency. In the marine industry the challenge is to attract the next generation of marine employees, they all want upward mobility and career path training to support their dreams.
Reduce Liability & Risk
To use a Marina or Boatyard as an example, it’s paramount today to ensure ongoing employee training is in place to help reduce risk and liability. A properly trained marina staff will make less mistakes, perform better, become more efficient and increase in overall productivity. But what helps you to reduce risk? Training, practice and preparation are important to plan pro-actively for emergencies. Unfortunate events like a marina fire, electrical shocks and safety-life issues around the water are areas of focus a marina needs to be engaged on with their employees regularly.
We have supported the (AMI) for years because of the outstanding job they do furthering marina management and operations education. The AMI facilitates both Intermediate and Advanced Marina Management training courses, as well as their Certified Marina Manager (CMM) certification program. In addition, they offer webinars in marina safety and risk management.
It’s human nature to become complacent and forget about process and procedures. In an article by Forensic News, they also note it’s human nature to become complacent and relaxed in a familiar and comfortable setting. Things become routine and you are able to navigate most of the day on autopilot. While their article relates to a lab environment, the basic message can be applied to any work environment because people naturally become complacent and need to be refocused. When you are running ongoing training programs that relate to any aspect of your marine business and reducing liability and risk, your business is in a better place.
Make Your Life Easier
Let’s use a boat dealership as an example of how to make your life easier. What is the result of your staff being well trained on an ongoing basis? If your dealership set up three core training programs (Sales Skills with CRM tools, Product Knowledge and Customer Support) that occurred once a month, the immediate and long-term results would grow. However, one of the keys is for training to be ongoing, as SalesLoft found in a recent study that 87% of new skills are lost within a month of sales training. With an ongoing commitment to training, your dealership would realize an increase in boat sales, and it would be measurable when compared to the same time period without sales skills training. Areas of focus could include daily tasks/focus, sales coaching, or learning to understand and qualify a customer’s needs. With product knowledge, understanding your boat inventory is a must, and setting up ongoing education with product manufactures or via educational learning sessions offered through organizations like the (MRAA) delivers a great path for employee learning. The MRAA provides Dealer Certification training to its members to help dealers establish effective and efficient systems and process, create a culture of continuous improvement and to turn satisfied customers into loyal fans. Continuing to focus on customer support training doesn’t just add value for the customer, it can drive sales and give you a strong competitive advantage too. Through customer service training, employees improve their skills and acquire new ones. Specific customer service training programs focus on improving communication, listening, problem-solving and organizational skills. Improving the quality of your customer service through training can lead to an increase in customer satisfaction. Just imagine the results when you have all three of these areas in your business; Sales Skills, Product Knowledge and Customer Support firing on all cylinders and constantly improving! It will certainly make life easier.
Finally, keeping your team properly trained on the Marine Management Software being used at your marina, boat yard or boat dealership, will positively affect your entire business operation. Your well trained and engaged staff will perform better at all levels, meaning that customers will form a better opinion of your firm and share that online. This in turn leads to more efficiency and likely billing more revenue. You could be leaving money on the table, or employees can be spending too much time during their workday trying to figure out how to do something in the system. With proper training, they can become more efficient and less dependent on other staff members. Whether it’s a new employee, more advanced users looking to take their skills to the next level or a staff member trying to improve practices and procedures, management system training is essential to ensure your staff will learn and and grow.
Your business will reduce employee turnover, create a happier work place and your employees will thank you for it. It seems that training your staff well is only a win-win-win situation…..for your business, the employee and the customers. What are you waiting for?