A challenging aspect of running any business is safety training, and this especially applies to auto dealerships. While many dealers are pretty successful in a lot of ways, some still find that their safety training could be improved to make their businesses more protected from accidents and injuries. Training, however, can be tedious, which can undoubtedly hinder its effectiveness. Let’s take a look at some ways to make safety training less boring and more effective for everyone involved.
Assess your employees
First, it is crucial to understand who you are training before even putting together any sort of safety training manual. A significant factor to look at is how much experience your dealership’s employees have and how well-versed they already are in certain areas. This will allow you to pinpoint what needs to be focused on the most, therefore reducing the amount of time spent on material that employees already know. Find out what safety concepts your employees need to work on, and primarily base training on those items.
Explore different teaching types
We all learn new information in different ways, as some of us are visual learners and others are hands-on learners. Determining which training type(s) would be the most effective for your employees can also be critical, as this will impact how well they take in and retain the information.
While some employees are comfortable looking at a digital presentation with slides and listening to an instructor, others may prefer to be actively involved in the training. For example, simulating emergencies like a fire or injury that occurs during a repair in the service lane or some form of a natural disaster outside on the lot can give employees an idea of what the situations may look like if they were actually happening.
While safety measures should be in place to prevent issues to the greatest extent possible, things happen. Preparedness is imperative, so making sure all employees are aware of the threats that exist and how to remedy them can help reduce the impact of an unfortunate event. All employees should know where emergency shut-offs, first aid kits, and other tools, such as fire extinguishers are. Taking a “field trip” around the dealership and demonstrating how each of these items works, can be helpful. Designating certain employees to carry out specific tasks in an emergency can also help your dealership be more prepared.
Overall, employees from all industries often feel like safety training is “boring,” so making training more exciting and interactive could help reduce boredom and increase attention. Since we all have a specific way in which we learn best, it is crucial to ask your employees which ones typically work for them.
Be open to questions
As with any training, it is a good idea for dealership management to accept questions before, during, and after safety training. Employees may be hesitant or embarrassed to ask questions, so leadership should also be open to answering one-on-one questions later on. In preparation for training, many managers also create frequently asked question (FAQ) lists of matters they anticipate employees may inquire about during training. Being as prepared as possible ultimately makes safety training less tedious and more efficient and effective.
Make training a regular occurrence
New products, safety tips, recommended procedures, laws from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and other entities, and data are continuously being released, so scheduling regular training can make everything a bit less confusing for employees. Keeping them up to date on the latest information and trends allows everyone to be in-the-know and understand what safety processes exist in the dealership and the auto industry as a whole. Every dealership will have a training schedule that suits them best, and once this is figured out, it is imperative to stick to it.
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