BusinessDay
NigeriaDecides2023

The relationship between leadership training and employee performance

Most leadership development studies offer evidence of a robust positive relationship between human resource management practices and organisational performance.

Research reveals that training and development programmes are vital human resource management practices, positively affecting the quality of the workers’ knowledge, skills and capability and thus resulting in higher employee performance on the job. This relation ultimately contributes to supreme organisational performance.

As depicted by behavioural experts, learning through training influences organisational performance through a more extraordinary leadership effectiveness, which is a critical factor in achieving corporate goals.

However, implementing training programmes to cover performance issues, such as filling the gap between the standard and the actual performance, is an effective way of improving employee performance.

Therefore, bridging the leadership performance gap refers to implementing a relevant training intervention to develop workers’ skills and abilities and enhance employee performance. Further, training facilitates an organisation to recognise that its workers are not performing well.

Thus, their knowledge, skills and attitudes must be moulded according to the organisation’s needs. There might be various reasons for the poor performance of the employees, such as workers may not feel motivated anymore to use their competencies, or maybe not be confident enough in their capabilities, or possibly facing work-life conflict.

The organisation must consider all the above aspects while selecting the most appropriate training intervention that helps the organisation solve all problems and enhance employee motivation to participate and meet organisation expectations by showing desired performance

The organisation must consider all the above aspects while selecting the most appropriate training intervention that helps the organisation solve all problems and enhance employee motivation to participate and meet organisation expectations by showing desired performance.

This superior employee performance occurs only because of a good quality training programme that leads to employee motivation and fulfilment of their needs.

Again, employee competencies develop through effective training programmes. It not only improves the overall performance of the employees to perform the current job effectively but also enhances the knowledge, skills, and attitude of the workers necessary for the future job, thus contributing to superior organisational performance.

The employees’ leadership competencies are developed through training, enabling them to implement the job-related work efficiently and competitively achieve corporate objectives.

However, employee performance is also affected by some environmental factors such as corporate culture, organisational structure, job design, performance appraisal systems, power and politics prevailing in the organisation and the group dynamics.

If the problems mentioned earlier exist in the organisation, employee performance decreases not due to a lack of relevant knowledge, skills and attitude but because of the abovementioned hurdles. These elements should be considered to make training effective and to ensure a positive effect of training on employee performance.

Employees feel more committed to the organisation when they feel organisational commitment towards them and thus show higher performance.

Hence, there is a positive correlation between the practical training programme and employee productivity; however, to make it possible, it is the responsibility of the managers to identify the factors that hinder training programme effectiveness and should take necessary measures to neutralise their effect on employee performance.

In addition, a high level of employee commitment is achieved if training achieves learning outcomes and improves performance, both on an individual and organisational level.

Basically, it can be debated that the effect of a training programme on employee outcomes such as motivation, job satisfaction and organisational commitment did not receive much attention so far.

We can test whether organisations can influence and transform their workers’ attitudes through proper training interventions.

Read also: How businesses can focus on employees to avoid ‘The Great Resignation’

Employee training should be planned in such a way that it results in a greater level of organisational commitment and growth. On the other hand, employees’ commitment results from some human resource practices, that is, succession planning and promotions, career development and training opportunities. All these practices, when achieved, result in more excellent employee performance. Hence, we can conclude that there is a link between Human Resource Management practices and organisational commitment to discovering the causes of effective employee performance.

Although the above information provides insights regarding the benefits of training and its positive influence on employee performance, some experts have argued that the management of an organisation mostly feels hesitant while investing in its human resource due to various reasons.

Sometimes, despite receiving effective and timely training programmes, employees intend to cash it for their market value and employment opportunity or are willing to change jobs just because of higher salaries. Thus, organisation investment in training results in a cost rather than profit. It is also observed that the organisation’s resistance to offering training propels individuals to invest in their career development and more excellent performance.

As mentioned earlier, training sessions accelerate the initiative ability and creativity of the workforce and capabilities to avoid human resource obsolescence due to demographic factors such as age, attitude, education, or the inability to cope with the technological changes. It’s been reported that training is a systematic process of enhancing the knowledge, skills, and attitude, hence leading to satisfactory performance by the employees on the job. It is imperative that the need and objectives of the training program should be identified before offering it to the employees. Lastly, training can improve employee performance by enhancing technical skills, functional skills, people skills, motivation and loyalty to the organisation.

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