While most of us welcome the opportunity to attend a company-sponsored course or workshop, others dread the activity – they view it as a waste of time. Yet another group relishes the chance, but for the wrong reason of escaping their daily duties.

From the point of view of human resources, spending money on training and upgrading is for the purpose of investing in each employee, so that he can develop himself as an individual and subsequently, add value to his job and the organisation.

Here are the reasons why you might be nominated to go for a particular training and development programme.

To do your job better

This is self-explanatory. This type of training helps to optimise the organisation’s pool of human resources. Courses that fall in this category cover essential work-related skills, techniques and knowledge that enable you to carry out your duties (if you are new to the job), or to do your current job better.

At times, training is necessary for you to keep up with changes in technology or familiarise yourself with new workflow processes or equipment. New industry-wide rules and guidelines may be implemented from time to time, and you may have to go for upgrading in order to meet the new requirements.

To develop your soft skills

After mastering the basic work-related skills, the next logical step in most HR departments’ training progression path would be to develop your soft skills. Soft skills refer to a cluster of personal qualities, habits, attitudes and behaviours that complement hard skills, and can be occupational requirements of certain jobs.

Courses in this area can include communication and interpersonal skills, problem solving, time management, teamwork, developing a strong work ethic and positive attitude and self-confidence. Developing your soft skills will also contribute to your own personal growth and help you perform beyond what is required in your job.

To prepare for a higher-level job

An organisation may have a leadership succession policy of identifying candidates from among existing employees for higher-level positions with greater responsibility or leadership roles. Those who show potential can then be groomed. If this arrangement is aligned with your own career plans, go ahead and seize the opportunity.  

Existing supervisors and managers also need to periodically keep themselves up to date to avoid becoming obsolete. Sometimes, the need for training is prompted by external factors such as changes in the organisational structure, a merger, restructuring, downsizing or outsourcing.