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27 Ways to integrate training and development with your needs – Review


Title: 27 Ways to Integrate Training and Development with the Needs of your Organization
Authors: Sharon Bartram and Brenda Gibson
Publisher: Gower, 2001
Format: A4 ringbinder, 202 pages
ISBN: 0 566 08415 5.

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’27 Ways’ has been given a subtitle in the publishers leaflet – ‘How to win friends …’. This is a necessary action for trainers in these days when senior management and decision makers are being wooed very strongly by the exponents of the alleged massive benefits of ‘cheaper’, ‘more available, and ‘effective’ on-line training programmes. So it is even more imperative for trainers to be effective in their training, to demonstrate cost- and value-consciousness, and, above all, to have a recognisably effective profile with their bosses.
The 27 activities (why 27 rather than 25 or 30?) are presented in 5 sections – section 1 is concerned with creating an identity and contains 5 activities ranging from identifying the culture of the organization to how the trainers see themselves; section 2 is ‘getting close to your customers’ and contains 9 activities relating to internal and external customer matters that are affected by training; section 3 concentrates on research and development of products with 4 activities ranging from being up to date with training design, involving line managers in these designs, and the inclusion of technology. Of the final two sections, section 4 is concerned with ‘managing your resources’ and contains 4 activities related to choosing external training providers, managing relationships, and controlling budgets; the final section, 5, is titled ‘Making a difference’ and contains 5 activities concerned with evaluation of the training provided.
The activities are liberally studded with charts, checklists, questionnaires, guidelines, analyses of data and suggestions for action, and although few can be called completely original in concept, as with all activities presented by these authors, the format and specific content are attractive, clear, logical and very valuable to trainers with these concerns in mind.
A valuable resource for use when it is necessary to confirm or change the way training and development is perceived in an organization and its impact on the business rather than, perhaps, concentrating on the training itself alone.

Reviewed by W Leslie Rae, Ellray Associates


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