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I’m Back….

Return to Bedlam 

It’s been a while since my last post, this is due to three main reasons, writers block, not enough time,  and a course.


Writers block, hell, knew that was coming, many of you regular readers will recall in my first couple how I said that I had never really written one of these before, and yes, it ain’t as easy as you think, you try and come up with a subject that seems interesting, then half way through, you start to hate it, so don’t continue.  I did that a few times, then, just gave up.  Then I had some holiday, then a couple of courses took up some of my time, and before I knew it, I hadn’t been anywhere near my blog in three weeks!!!


So what course have I done, I was invited to do a ‘Training for Trainers’ course, very interesting it was too, basically, for those who actually do training, a look at method, planning, trainee experience/participation and also delivery.  All very worthwhile, and for me a chance to actually get some proper training on what I do almost every week.


Not sure about any of you my faithful readers, but I have never had any training on how or what to do, I was thrown into the deep end and told to either swim or drown, ok, so some of it is common sense, after a while to get to learn what to do with that awkward person.


I found it interesting, and very worthwhile, but you know, there is always one…


Based on the fact that most people around the table, have at sometime during the working month, have a need to do some training, be it on a small part of our system, or on a larger scale to a group of people, new to the organisation, and who need training on the system as a whole.


The two days were about not just ‘how to train’, but also about planning, getting the best out of the sessions, a bit of theory and methodology, and a little bit of ‘test training’


You know what they say about you only get out what you put in…  We were given a task of coming up with a 10-15 minute presentation, could be on any subject, and then this was to be presented to the group.


One lady said, that as all her training was done on a computer, she wasn’t going to do it!! So, she spent the best part of 4 hours, sat in her chair, picking her nails and despite all of us being asked for feedback to aid the person doing the ‘presentation’, she said, naff all.


Then, next day, after we had been given the task of coming up with another presentation, but this time it had to include a debate, that we kept control of, she not only turned up 40 minutes late, but yet again refused to take part, except to be negative, no matter what the subject, and in some places, be down right argumentative.


I came away from this and really wondered what she had got out of a training session that she seemed not interested in attending, and why, if she really didn’t want to be there she stayed, or even came back.


Then it struck me, the only reason you would come to a training session and not participate, is for the free lunch and a chance to get out of the office.


All work and no play


Then again, this person has a history, her stated aim is to leave the company, she has been here for 6 years, got passed over for my job, as in the words of my line manager, she wasn’t good enough, and continually complains about the money/work/people/her line manager/her colleagues/lack of training!!!/lack of clear guidance (On things she does week in week out) Etc.


She has openly been for a few interviews (she says), all of which, according to her, she has been turned down for as she hasn’t had the right training to do the job, i.e. if we paid for her to do the training, she could get another job.


Hang on, it never worked like that for me when I was tying to find a new job, you never even got an interview unless you had proven experience in a program/software package/language, so how is she getting an interview, then being turned down for no experience.


Without being anything other than diplomatic, she’s lying, then gets found out in the interview, that’s the only way I can see it working, either that, or she is just plan lying about the interviews.


So why, when you get the chance do some training, do you just sit there, and not do anything, Ah, because, this is soft skills, not the Crystal Reports training, (that she is getting this week), not the Access training (She never uses it, why do you need training), not the SQL training (Again, she never uses it, so why pay for the training). And so isn’t going to help her that next job, is it?

Soft skills are good too, ‘Training experience, hell I had training in it, I know how to plan, and deliver good quality training’, although to be honest, I plan most of her training, as I do for 10 other people, but she still has to do some.


I spent three years learning SQL before I got my first ‘real’ job using it, I spent two years learning Crystal before that job came along, but she is clearly expecting to learn all these things, then walk into a job with her little piece of paper to say she learned it last week, and expects a job with 30K+ a year (That’s her stated minimum salary expectation).


Then I thought, do we all expect too much from that next job, I know I have at least once, based on the job spec and what I am told at an interview, I expected to be learning .net within 6 months, the reality was that the only person who knew it at that time in the company, didn’t want to teach it, as that would make them less than indispensible!!


So after a year of doing not much I left to take the job I am now in, but I had no high demands, I wasn’t chasing jobs I couldn’t do, or had little or no experience in, hell my VB was so rusty I never even bothered applying for those.


So what makes her think that she can just walk into that job? Self belief? Or is it in her case at least, little or no understanding of the real world and how it works?


All play and No Work


Any way, this week I got my hands on a full version of ‘Xcelsius 2008’, the company I work for bought some prebuilt Dashboards from our software supplier, and we have also paid for the software to create our own, so it’s me against the machine now, me trying to get the most out of this little nugget of joy and wonderment, so that’s me pretty shafted for the next few weeks, Can’t wait!!!


I have, up to now, only had demo versions, and while I have been able to create some pretty good stuff, knowing that the licence is going to run out has kind of made me not spend as much time with it as I would have liked, but now it’s all hands to the pump, full steam ahead, next stop Dashboard island.


Thanks for listening, and in the words of the late great Sherlock Holmes, ‘The Games a breast, no, The Games Monopoly, No, I know, Watson, Lets get him’

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