Continuing to train and develop employees is key to growing as an organization. Each employee, department, division and company requires different training to meet their needs. The success of any company is ultimately based on the skills and knowledge of its employees, which means companies must invest in training and facilitate the development of all of our employees in order to be successful. This is especially true when those employees own the company, which is true for Wright Service Corp. and all of our subsidiary companies because we’re employee owned.
Learning Management System
After completing our fiscal year-end meetings back in September, we saw a reoccurring theme across all our companies: the need for training and employee development. Wright Service Corp. (parent company to Wright Tree Service, CNUC, Terra Spectrum Technologies, among others, respectively) will be rolling out a new online platform to help further educate and train our employees on everything from best hiring practices to approved work methods to email etiquette, and everything in between. The platform is a learning management system, commonly known by its acronym, LMS. This will be an important stepping stone in understanding and meeting our employees’ needs and to advance our workforce so that each employee can be successful and have the tools to do their job. This investment will not only strengthen us as a company but will help develop the future leaders within our company. The easy way is to provide training for the sake of training with no specific objective and make it generic across the company. But we are not about taking the easy way. We want to do it the right way.
First, we must understand the training needs of all our employees. We know there is a great deal of diversity in terms of training needs across our companies. Second, we must find ways to measure the success of our training. This new web-based system will allow a great deal of flexibility, not only in the subject matter of the training but also the way the training is delivered.
For example, a Wright Tree Service general foreman could conduct a tailgate via webinar with a laptop and administer a simple assessment at the end of that training. A CNUC consulting utility forester who works in an isolated area could have a specific training curriculum to better understand federal transmission regulations and do all of his or her training online through this new LMS platform.
Delivering training is only part of the process. The bigger picture involves employee development. What do you, as an employee owner of our company, need to be successful? Do you want to move up in the organization? Are you willing to relocate to take a promotion in the future? What type of training do you need to get there? These are just some of the questions that need to be asked when we look at employee development. Each of our companies has unique challenges, but each is looking at ways to develop their employees.
For a company to be sustainable and successful over time, it requires continuous employee development and planning. Who are the next supervisors and managers? It will be determined through the process of training and development. This investment will lead to long-term sustained growth for the entire company and will increase the value of our stock for each of our employee owners.
This article was published in the September-October 2017 issue of the Utility Arborist Newsline.
By Scott Packard, Chairman and CEO and Derek Vannice, Vice President.