Reser’s Fine Foods has a long history of promoting from within. Most of their Supervisors started as line employees and worked their way up—these employees knew a lot about Reser’s and the production work but once promoted to Supervisors, they needed the knowledge and skills their new role required.
Reser’s wanted to provide a year-long management skills training program for their Supervisors. They had already completed the internal work of determining topics based on the expressed needs of Supervisors and HR when they reached out to us.
- Our job was to create a twelve-session series of 1-hour instructor-led sessions that could be easily facilitated by HR Managers and would be applicable to all Supervisors, in each of their facilities, across the United States.
We met with HR Managers from across the country to identify gaps in knowledge and uncover the unique scenarios that arose in their plants.
With only one hour dedicated to each session—and learners who are used to being actively on the floor working—we knew we’d have to stay focused on the learning objectives while creating engaging, interactive, and impactful sessions. We wanted to make sure that Supervisors walk away from each session with skills and knowledge that they could immediately put into practice, and we wanted to find ways to extend the learning beyond the classroom.
Each of the twelve sessions:
- Includes a brief reading assignment to complete in the week prior to the session. This helps cover a big part of the “tell” so that during the session we can focus on practice activities and challenging assumptions/knowledge. (Think flipped learning.)
- Is packed with practice role-plays, decision-making scenarios, and learning games. We like Supervisors to approach topics from multiple perspectives, really helping them transition from thinking like a line employee to thinking like a manager.
To extend the learning beyond the classroom, at the end of each session, participants:
- Complete an action plan to commit to one thing they will implement or improve back on the job.
- Choose an accountability partner to help hold them accountable. They meet with their accountability partner—another Supervisor, Manager, or HR Generalist—at least once before the next session to talk progress and next steps.
The beauty of this program design is that it can be implemented in several ways, based on their needs:
- Over a year-long period as twelve, 1-hour sessions (the original goal)
- In a bootcamp style as two, 6-hour sessions
- As just-in-time individual sessions
- For example: If documentation is not being done properly, a quick 1-hour session focused on documentation will reset the expectation and address the issue.