How To Build Supervision Training – Professional Growth Systems

How To Build Supervision Training

Learning how to meet expectations in a new work environment requires learning a number of skills. When a new person is onboarded, the organization needs to teach them how to execute the tasks associated with the job, learn their workflow, meet their teammates, and understand how collaboration works in their new environment. Along with these basic things, new employees should be oriented to how they will be evaluated and supervised. Providing specific training on this topic can accelerate the time it takes for them to reach the expected performance.

A standard cycle of training involves:

  1. Describing the process and expectations
  2. Modeling or experiencing the concept
  3. Practicing or implementing
  4. Feedback and review

After completing an initial cycle of all these steps, you may repeat feedback and review until the employee has demonstrated understanding and is meeting performance expectations. In some cases, it may be necessary to repeat the explaining and modeling phases.

Describing the process and expectations

This is a critical step many organizations skip. Often an employee learns how they will be supervised as they are experiencing the supervision process. When you explain your supervision approach you should cover the following items:

  • Language – Many organizations have specific terms or words they use when talking about performance. It is important to teach people this language and what it means.
  • Performance Metrics –Tell the employee what they will be measured on and where you get the data to evaluate performance. In cases where there are no specific data points, ensure the employee is aware they will be evaluated on the critical aspects of their role which may include: timeliness, attitude, communication skills, etc.
  • Rhythm or Cycle for Supervision – Do you meet weekly, monthly, in the moment? Share your organizational approach to supervision as well as your individual style.

Model the process

You could have the new team member sit in on an actual meeting with another employee (ensure to have the other person’s permission before inviting the new team member). If you choose to have the employee experience your interaction with someone else, select the member of your team that best exemplifies the approach and results you are looking for. You could also simply practice your approach using a fictional scenario.

Practice and implement the process

Follow the established structure and implement the approach you described. If your supervision happens mostly in the moment while engaged in work (e.g. a production line, on the sales floor, etc.) let them know you are initiating a supervisory meeting. Follow the process or structure you have defined and end the conversation with a moment of feedback about the interaction.

Feedback and review

This step is critical to developing skills and a two-way street; ask the employee for feedback about how you provided instruction or feedback. Learn the individual and the approach that works best for them. Some people prefer short direct communication while others require more explanation and demonstration to learn. It is also important that you give them feedback about your experience. Do you feel confident they understood you? Did they ask questions in the way you expect? Did they respond to your supervision in a way that you deem helpful and moving the team forward?

Additionally, we recommend you adopt an organizational approach to supervision. Provide a basic outline or system for supervisors to use. This will not only make things easier for new employees entering the organization, but it will also make transitions to new supervisors easier as employees promote, shift roles, or work varied shifts under differing supervisors. If you have time in your work environment, detailed training for supervisors produces the best results. However, the training and onboarding process does not require a lengthy or detailed orientation. You can simply approach the new employee with the stages of training in mind.

Recognize when they initially begin working with you, they are learning your supervision approach. In the initial stages of an employee’s onboarding to a new team you are teaching them how you want them to engage and follow your leadership. An employee is not only learning what they need to deliver, they are also learning how to interact with you to meet expectations and improve performance. When you are confident that you and the individual understand each other, you can work to strengthen the relationship resulting in higher returns. Training employees in your approach to supervision will accelerate the process and get you both to higher performance with less frustration.