Why apprenticeships are good for your business

An apprenticeship is a way for young people and adult learners to earn while they learn; in a real job gaining real qualifications.

Businesses benefit from growing their own talent and creating a highly motivated and skilled workforce.

The benefits of apprenticeships are:

  • They are a tried and tested way to recruit new staff, perhaps retrain, or upskill existing staff or people returning to work after a break;
  • The apprentice learns while they earn!
  • On the job training means minimum disruption to day to day business activity whilst getting the maximum impact;
  • Apprenticeships can be tailored to specific job roles making them flexible to the meet needs of your business;
  • Engaging young people and encouraging them to take up apprenticeships and continual professional development will assist your business with its plan for succession – hopefully your business will not suffer with an aging workforce;
  • Train up the future managers in your business;
  • Become an employer that inspires a future generation by passing on skills and experience;
  • Help improve your product or service with apprentice input;
  • Apprenticeships boost productivity to business by on average £214 per week.

An apprenticeship can take between one and five years to complete, depending on the role.  There are three levels of apprenticeship available:

  • Intermediate level apprenticeship (level 2) – equivalent to 5 A*- C GCSE’s;
  • Advanced level apprenticeship (level 3) – equivalent to 2 A-levels;
  • Higher level apprenticeship (level 4 and above).

There has never been a better time to hire an apprentice.  There is a wealth of support and assistance available to business to make sure they hire the right apprentice for them.

Where to start:

  • Choose a training provider to deliver the apprenticeship programme that is right for your business;
  • Recruit the apprentice (the training provider can help you here);
  • Develop a training plan which reflects the apprentice’s need and yours;
  • Engage with the apprentice and ensure their needs and yours are met;

More information on how to hire an apprentice is available at: www.gov.uk/take-on-an-apprentice/overview.

During the apprenticeship:

  • Provide on-site training to support the apprentice. Most of the training will be on-the-job, working with a mentor to learn specific skills. Off-the-job training is provided by the training provider either in the workplace, or through day/block release away from the workplace.
  • Review and test the progress of an apprentice and provide feedback to them and their training provider

Apprenticeships are highly regarded within business. On completion of an apprenticeship, 90% of apprentices remain in employment with just over 70% staying with the same employer.   If you are considering  growth in your business and thinking about how to integrate young people into your workforce, then please contact me for some help and guidance debbie@peptalk-uk.com or 0792 700 8440.

What are the essentials of leadership?

A leader creates an environment where people consistently perform to the best of their ability. Some of us are natural leaders, whereas the rest of us have to learn how to lead.

To be a great leader, you need to be many things. To achieve that, there are a number of essentials required. For instance:

Giving a clear sense of direction. If you don’t know where you are going, how do you know when you get there, or what path to take?
Understanding who the customer is. Who really is the customer? A customer is the recipient of a good, service or product. They could be internal or external.
Communicating clearly. What is it you are trying to tell them. If they get it wrong – perhaps they didn’t understand.
Being flexible. Accept change and implement it.
Taking risks but not to the detriment of your department or business.
Building a strong team around you. Have clear goals and objectives from the start. Delegate and regularly review. Respect advice and suggestions.
Listening with humility (be open to what you are hearing) and acting with courage. Be brave.
Earning reward through building trust. Build a culture of competence, honesty and reliability along with good communication and common vision.
Becoming a leader requires time and patience. If you would like some help, or your business would like a Leadership and Management course delivered to suit your business needs, then email info@peptalk-uk.com for more information.

This course is suited to existing managers, directors, these new to management or senior supervisors.

Seven Tips for Engaging Ambassadors

1         Appoint someone in your organisation to be accountable for the ambassador programme. They need to be organised, a good communicator and an ambassador themselves.

2         Research, research, research – who are the ambassadors? Know who and which of your stakeholders are your ambassadors. It takes dedicated time and effort to understand who the ambassadors are amongst your stakeholders.

3         Start small – grow big. Aim for ten passionate ambassadors rather than 100 that are just ‘OK’. Growth will come organically as they help you identify others just like them.

Tell the ten about the value for of recruiting other ambassadors just like them.

4         Create a communication channel just for ambassadors. It is important to connect with your ambassadors and create ways for them to connect with each other.

5         Acknowledge ambassadors. Tell them they are doing a great job and share with them the results and measurables of their great work.

If appropriate, reward them in some way. For example, give them tickets to a event or invite them to lunch with the board. Ambassadors need to know they are doing a great job in order for them to continue doing it.

6         Create a feedback loop between the ambassadors and the brand. Give them a go-to person who will be responsible for ensuring key messages are communicated. Create a forum for responses or feedback. Let them communicate with those that do the marketing. Ask one of your ambassadors to engage in a marketing focus group.

7         Give ambassadors the tools to create something amazing! Fuel the organic growth, so when ambassadors are communicating with their advocates they can immediately bring the brand to their attention. Tools can include flyers or cards which detail website URL, who to contact for further information and the communication channels your organisation engages with.