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Create Specialists. Expecting temporary employees to absorb everything about your business in such a quick time is a waste of resources. Knowing the greatest demands during the busy season will be your ultimate guide to the most critical points to include in training. Creating specialist allows seasonal employees to focus easier, manage related information updates quicker and gain a greater sense of ownership in their position.
How do you identify your top 3 training points? Go and tap into your regular base of employees for ideas and suggestions. Build rapport and valued involvement from the seasoned employees to help shape your seasonal support crew. They know exactly where you need help. This will alleviate stress on everyone, companywide.
How do you create specialist? Operating under the assumption that a seasonal employee should be a jack or jill-of-all-trades while they’re on your workforce is a sure way to customer disservice. A seasonal specialist should have no more than 5 key tasks and duties designated for them. Consider these tasks as areas involving focus, such as product knowledge, inventory management, maintenance or clean-up, administrative tasks, etc. Matching the best person to take on a particular set of duties may be the toughest part of this process. Once you’ve found your seasonal employees, establish and deploy your specialist or specialist teams. Focus on the key, quickly learned and manageable tasks to get the temporary employees up to speed.
It is also important to recognize that sensitive or complex situations like direct customer service, complaints, returns, etc., will be better suited for your regular, experienced staff members to handle efficiently and effectively.
TL:DR/Take Away: Training new, seasonal employees to be really good at 5 tasks is a better use of your time and resources than acclimating them to the entire operation of your business. They become a Specialist in their given task and will be the go-to person to alleviate any issues that occur, becoming significantly valuable during critical times. Just remember, it is important to set out expectations, clear boundaries and sound direction so every employee is aware of what is to be done and by which employee. Make sure you stay consistent and have the expectations printed out for reference. It’s common for employees to feel exploited during high stress situations, so designating tasks out will ease the stress on all staff.