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Elizabeth II, Queen of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, made the following salient proclamation more than 50 years ago: “It's all to do with the training: You can do a lot if you're properly trained.” What has held true through the ages is not a secret; people perform better when properly trained.
Walk the Walk
Training is often an afterthought in many organizations, and the longer a company has been in business, the more this seems to apply. While assessing more than 1,000 companies over the past couple of decades, it has been amazing to observe that the biggest offenders of this component are the companies that overuse the sound bite “our most important asset is our people.” When you really dig into the process and peel back the onion, it is clear that their commitment to training is not commensurate with that statement. No matter what you call it: training, coaching, mentoring, etc., what we are really talking about is turning people into a competitive advantage.
A keystone of any world-class organization is the depth and breadth of the training program. Training can be defined as learning that is provided to improve performance on the present job. A well-managed program in a printed circuit board fabricator can mean the difference between average and outstanding performance. Of course, this applies to every industry, but with up to 60 different possible processes, combined with the degree of difficulty required to produce today’s PCBs, it takes on exponential importance.
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Editor's Note: This column originally appeared in the March 2014 issue of The PCB Magazine.