Trainer’s goof points to need for training

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.Q: I walked into one of my employee’s work stations, and she immediately turned over a sheet of paper on her desk. It is clear that she did not want me to see what was on it, and I said nothing about it at the time. However, I keep wondering if I did the right thing, and how to handle this type of situation in the future. A If you really believe that you did the right thing, you would not keep wondering about the way that you handled this matter. However, you might as well stop wondering because constant ruminating over the past is not going to do you any good. It is easy to conclude that your employee was working on a personal matter rather than doing her job when you approached, and she apparently hoped you did not notice her attempted cover-up. At the same time, there could actually be some acceptable although farfetched reasons for her to do a paper-flip. For example, perhaps she wanted to surprise you with some interesting piece of data that she is fine-tuning, or she may even be planning a surprise party for you. Nonetheless, you are the manager, and you have a right to know what your employees are doing during the hours when they are supposed to be working. As a result, the next time she flips over a paper when you approach, you should simply say, “Hi, what are you working on?” At that point, you will see whatever is written on the paper, and perhaps there will be some writing on the wall, too. Q: Our company brought in an outside trainer, and during the session I thought he made a technical mistake, and not on a minor issue. When I politely asked him about it, he turned my question into a joke and got a big laugh from everyone in the room. Afterward, I did some checking and found out I was right and the trainer was wrong on the issue. Should I say something or just forget it? A Not only was the trainer technically wrong, he was also personally wrong. Even if your question was totally without merit, a trainer has no right to ridicule or embarrass any attendee. If that were the trainer’s only mistake, you would be well-advised to say something about it. However, this trainer also provided you and the other attendees with incorrect information on a significant matter. As a result, there are two solid reasons for you to take further action. The first step is to contact whoever retained this trainer and let him or her know what happened in the session. Secondly, there should be a formal correction sent to all of the attendees so that they will have accurate information on the point the trainer mishandled. Thirdly, the trainer should be advised of his errors, and he should write a formal apology to you and copy the other attendees. And finally, if the trainer is not self-employed, his employer should be advised of this incident. It sounds like this trainer needs some training, not only in his so-called area of expertise, but also in human relations. Q: I am currently looking for a job, and one of my friends told me that he heard that putting a “P.S.” at the end of a cover letter is a good way to get some extra attention. Is this a good idea, or is it something that might put an employer off? A Your friend is actually telling you something that many direct marketing professionals have known for years, namely that a “P.S.” is an excellent way to highlight a particularly important point that could get lost in the middle of an advertisement or promotional piece. When employers read a cover letter, they do not dwell on every word, but more typically read it all quickly. If a few good points jump out, the next stop is the r sum . However, no matter what a letter looks like, most people will read a “P.S.” It easily attracts a reader’s eyeballs, since these after-the-fact messages often contain a piece of information that is particularly interesting, important or intriguing. If you are going to put a “P.S.” on your cover letter, there are a few points to keep in mind. The first is to keep your postscript message so brief that the reader can take in the whole thought in one glance. Secondly, make sure your “P.S.” has information that is particularly important to this employer. For example, if the position calls for a specific skill, certification or ability, you should include it in the body of your cover letter, and then highlight it in your “P.S.” In a word, a “P.S.” can be a very effective Persuasive Strategy. Ken Lloyd is an Encino-based management consultant, coach and author who specializes in organizational behavior. He is the author of “Jerks at Work: How to Deal With People Problems and Problem People.” Write to him at lloydonjob@aol.com.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img