The Top 10 Reasons Why Training Your People In Tough Economic Times Is A Bad Idea

We thought it was time to stop all this political correctness around valuing your people in a downturn and tell it like it really is, with the top ten reasons not to train people – the real deal.


1. It gives people new skills and new ideas which they have to try out back in the workplace. This is dangerous because they are finding the job difficult enough as it is.

2. It can send out the wrong signal – like you value them. What you really want is for people to feel like you might fire them at any minute, it keeps them sharp.

3. It’s a great way to save some money. A few hundred pounds not spent on a training course for someone responsible for thousands, perhaps millions of pounds of customer/product/process/organisational value is better than increasing their ability to unlock new opportunities or reduce our business risk.

4. It confuses them. We need the gloom and doom message to be consistent, so giving them a positive, enjoyable experience shows us as being inconsistent.

5. It implies we have a plan of which training is only a part. This will raise expectations that we know what we are doing, when in reality we don’t.

6. It introduces them to people from other organisations (if an open training course) which might give them thoughts about comparing pay, conditions or work practices. People are better off kept ignorant.

7. It forces a dialogue with their line-manager, around business objectives, coaching points and development goals. Managers haven’t got time for this; they’ve got too much other pressure to cope with.

8. It takes people way from the job, and they’re off enough already through low morale.

9. It improves people’s CVs, and they might leave if they think they’re too smart.

10. It’s a waste of time and money. We never implement new stuff when they come back because we’ve been too busy covering for them whilst they’ve been away. Anyway, after the brief positivity we see for the first few days, they seem to become even more miserable than before they went on the course.


Training people on April 1st?  You’ve got to be having a laugh!