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Can you train face to face at any time?


I'm trying to establish whether there is any research into effective hours for classromm training. Do other blue-chip companies offer 24hour face to face training? If not, why not? If yes, what are the most effective times of the day?
Sarah Davies

3 Responses

  1. 24 hours
    Dear Sarah,
    I did some research on this a number of years back, and as for published research, then there was very little. The only large scale research I found was a military study into training exercises carried out at night and the higher than average accident rate on them.

    However, working in a 24hour industry, we went ahead with some face-to-face training at night, and the results that I found by setting a test at the end of the training showed that trainees who had the training at night scored only a few per cent below their colleagues who took the training and the test during the day. However, subsequent word of mouth research, found that their retention over a duration of a couple of months was far lower.

    Subsequent reading that I’ve done, suggests that we need to follow natural light patterns to get the best out of the brain. And as night workers are now guaranteed longer breaks and shorter working periods under the Working Time Directive – which follows H&S research. The two appear to go hand-in-hand.

    Get in touch if you need further details.
    Megan Borysiewicz Cole
    Switched on people development for switched on organisations, wherever they are
    [email protected]

  2. 24 hours a day training

    I cannot offer any sources of info / stats – but in my experience (independent training consultant) the effectiveness of training at particular times of the day, can be influenced by what people’s “normal” days are … does that make sense ? Probably not.

    I recently had the opportunity of working with a large logistics/distribution company who have depots all over the UK, and was delivering a leadership programme for supervisors and managers – some of whom work the night shift. So, their normal “day” started at 11pm and finished at 6am. For them, this was their “awake time” – do you see what I am saying ?

    In order to fit in with their shift patterns, I offered to deliver training at this time to suit their “normal” working hours …. very strange breaking for “lunch” at 3am !!! So the only person “out of sorts” at that time of night was me – the one who is used to daylight hours !

    By the way, the training was very well received, even more so as I was prepared to fit in with their hours / requirements and did not expect them to fit in with the “norm” training event.

    So as I say, time of day, depends a lot on that person’s preferred “time of day” (or night !)

    Hope this is useful food for thought

    Andrea Newton
    Achievement By Design

  3. 24 Hour Per Day Training
    Hi Sarah,

    I read the comments by Andrea and Megan with much interest. I have the (mis)fortune to be a former military officer who subsequently managed 24 hour distribution operations in industry. I am now a freelance trainer and would never consider conducting training during night operations for the following reasons:

    1. The previous comment regarding poor long-term retention is absolutely correct. Additionally I have found that any disruption to night-shit routine has implications for productivity for the whole shift cycle.

    2. Night shift staff have to concentrate harder and operate at the ‘concious competence’ level during their shift as a matter of routine, otherwise accidents happen. As with driving a car when newly-qualified, this in itself is demanding. Giving night staff anything additional to think about would be dangerous.

    Hope this helps.

    Maple Associates
    Training, Motivation and Team Development
    [email protected]


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