Overcoming 5 Training Development Pitfalls

Overcoming 5 Training Development Pitfalls

Matt Archer

September 30, 2021

training development pitfalls - quote image

Beware the Pitfalls of Training Development

Training development can be a complex endeavor. Each organization, and each course being developed, is its own unique entity that has a specific set of criteria that will work best for them. This often leads to distinct challenges that arise from their unique use cases.

Overcoming these challenges is an important function of the training development team, whose goal is to take the requirements of the client and turn it into a high quality learning experience to meet their business goals and desired outcomes.

Below are 5 common pitfalls we encounter in training development, along with ways to overcome them to help demonstrate that no matter what the use case and desired outcome, there’s almost always a way to get there. As the old proverb goes, “Where there’s a will, there’s a way.”


Pitfall 1 - Learners are Not Engaged with the Content

training development pitfalls - learners not engagedFew things are more demoralizing in the learning development world than spending months creating a training only to have your learners fall asleep or play on their phone instead of paying attention.

This reaction almost always leads back to one thing – your content wasn’t engaging enough.


Create the engagement you want by adding interactive elements such as break-out groups or Q&A periods for live training, or quizzes and clickable elements in eLearning.

Find ways to make the content interesting such as telling an interesting story related to the training content or making your learners actively use their brains instead of passively listening to someone speak.


Pitfall 2 - Lack of Leadership Skills Training

training development pitfalls - leadership skills trainingLeadership is an important skill at any company. It’s very apparent when it’s missing but can be tricky to quantify and teach. When done poorly, you risk putting someone unqualified into a position of power leading to all kinds of potential problems.

How do you solve for this?


Consider hosting leadership development workshops where you invite trainers from outside your organization to speak with all levels of your team to help instill leadership habits, rules, beliefs, and attitudes. From there, continue developing leadership skills in your team, especially in your core management structure, to help lead by example.

As your leadership situation improves, think about creating your own internal leadership training so that employees see managers and peers leading by example.


Pitfall 3 - Change Management Issues

training development pitfalls - change managementOne of the biggest challenges for SMBs is scaling their training while they scale their business. Things change. It’s a fact of life. Odds are your business will change their policies, procedures and business process multiple times over the course of its lifetime.

But is your training taking that into account for new and existing workers?


Modernize your training by having your SMEs (Subject Matter Experts) document their current processes and use cases for all important processes and tasks. In some cases this may never have happened before and can lead to some surprising and enlightening moments.

After the processes are documented, work with your teams to create training whose outcomes match your business goals, and most importantly takes into account changes that are likely to occur in the future.


Pitfall 4 - Employees Working in Silos

training development pitfalls - working in silosAs businesses grow we often find disconnects between how different workers handle similar situations, which we call working in silos. This usually happens as a result of there being obsolete or non-existent documentation for their jobs.

When there isn’t a clear mandate for how to do one’s job, it’s everyone for themselves, which can lead to mistakes, inefficient use of resources, wasted time and wasted money.


Create standardized training that sets out the rules, responsibilities and requirements of each position so that workers know what they should be doing. Meet with your teams to ensure their concerns are being taken into account when creating the training.

Standardized training helps remove silos and enables teams more efficiently manage their projects and makes onboarding easier since everyone should be trained the same way in each position.


Pitfall 5 - Training in a Virtual Workplace

training development pitfalls - virtual trainingThe world has really changed these past few years. More people are working remotely than ever before, and it has been successful across many lines of business.

But since people aren’t together very often, how do you handle efficiently onboarding, crossing training, and upskilling employees without in-person training?


Virtual training, such as eLearning, has been around for years and training development teams have continued to innovate in light of the current global situation. The result is that many virtual trainings that incorporate social learning, gamification, and interactivity have been created to satisfy the demand for high quality virtual-centric learning.

While in-person training is still the preferred option, Virtual Training is easier and more cost efficient to implement than ever before. If you’re unsure whether full virtual training would work, consider using a hybrid training model that combines elements of virtual and in-person training to play upon the strengths of both.


Final Thoughts

Positive Results™ is a learning development and cloud services company that works with organizations like yours to identify gaps in their business process and solve them through implementing customized training and tools.

Each of our clients is unique, and encounters different training development challenges. By helping them solve these challenges, we’re empowering them to expand their abilities and improving our own expertise, so we create even better solutions for our clients in the future.


If you have additional questions or need support, contact us at:


Positive Results™ Custom Business Solutions









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