Booster training is typically seen as a tool to reinforce knowledge to help material stay fresh and top of mind, but with the right strategy it can be so much more! Let’s start looking at booster training as a way to level up your associates by not only reinforcing what they already know but building their confidence and mastery so that they can grow within your company.
Typical Booster vs. Booster to Level Up
So, “what is booster training to level up”?
While typical boosters help associates recall past concepts and focus on knowledge retention, using booster trainings to level up (aka: progress in their role) pushes your associates to not only know concepts, but gets them to think outside the box, apply what they know in real-to-life scenarios, AND problem solve for unique situations. It goes above and beyond knowledge retention – focusing on critical application, long-term improvement, and personal advancement.
Why Use Booster Training This Way?
Booster training made to level up is all about providing opportunities for your associates to expand their skillsets, work towards becoming experts and reach new levels in their role. It promotes mastery of concepts and encourages growth within your organization.
You can even take a blended approach by utilizing some of the typical booster tools (i.e., assessments, gamification, scenarios) in combination with coaching/mentorship to provide even more tailored growth opportunities. Instead of just onboarding and forgetting, you encourage career pathing within your company and help grow your associates into ambassadors. But the real benefit of this strategy is it gives YOU the ability to create an atmosphere where your associates feel empowered and will want to continue within your company.
Creating A Strategy for Boosters to Level Up
An important part of helping your associates progress in their role is creating a strategy that includes the tools they need to do so.
Let’s look at this situation: You’re a retailer with department-specific associates who have so much knowledge at their disposal. But where do they go next with that knowledge? How do they continue their learning journey and level up in their roles? Who will guide them and help determine next steps? This is where establishing a strategy for career pathing and crafting your learning culture to include mentors who coach your associates plays a pivotal role in helping them level up.
Here’s what you can do:
Use the booster tools you’ve got in your back pocket! As that retailer, you could:
- Use assessments to gauge where your associates are at, how well they actually know the training, and areas of improvement.
- Add in gamification/scenarios into these assessments, pulling in multiple concepts that get your associates to think critically and apply their knowledge rather than just recall information. Put the associate in the driver’s seat so they can test their knowledge in real-to-life situations.
- From here, designate a manager/mentor who can go over the results and figure out next steps. These mentors can look at the feedback from the assessments, see what courses would be needed to help “level up” the associate and fill in the gaps, and determine next steps.
What this achieves is two things: 1) it gives your associates guidance so they know what to do and where to go to “level up” and become experts in their role and 2) it gives them the support/community that will make them want to continue within your company and on their learning path.
An Extra Tip: Incentivize, Motivate, and Elevate!
Implementing rewards and fun competitions can help motivate your associates to not only complete trainings but grow their skills to get ahead of their peers. A few examples are using leaderboards or badges for company or storewide competitions with rewards in the form of shout outs, gift cards, or company swag. Establishing incentives can be a helpful motivator. Plus — who doesn’t love a little competition here and there.
Using booster training to level up is an important way to support your associates with continued learning and growth in your company. It’s an overall strategy that involves a little upfront planning to use the learning tools you may already have to actively encourage learning on an on-going basis. Whether that’s giving feedback, answering questions, or just reassuring and coaching them on next steps – you’re providing a space where your associates are confident and comfortable with challenging themselves because they know you have their back.