Hiring Wisdom: Are Your Trainers Well Trained?

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Jul 25, 2016

A while ago, I took my wife to a national restaurant chain for dinner because I would be speaking at their annual meeting in a couple of months. While the food was good and the service was great, there was still a problem.

It was our server’s first week on the job and, when I asked about a particular dish, she could not give me her opinion because she hadn’t tried it yet. She was honest, however, and suggested something she had tried. Then I asked her about her training and she said it wasn’t very good, but she had been waiting tables for three years already and had just moved to town, so she knew what to do and, in fact, she had been a trainer for her former employer.

I told her I had also been watching another table nearby and that that server was making all kinds of mistakes—reaching across the table, not clearing plates, etc. She told me the person who was waiting that table was also new, but, when I then pointed out the person I was talking about, she said: “Oh, no, that is not the other new hire; that’s the trainer.”

So, no matter what the job, who is doing the training?