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In-House Training and Business Coaching

It can always be tempting - even more so in times of economic struggles - to attempt to lower training budgets and opt for training which is less expensive. This can often be achieved by attending an open course with other people rather than commissioning a bespoke, in-house training programme for your employees. Although it can be cheaper, the overall effectiveness of the training will usually be lower, and for areas such as business coaching it will more often than not simply not be practical. This is examined in more detail below.

In-House Training as Opposed to an Open Course

It is certainly not the case that a sweeping statement such as "In-house training sessions are better than open courses" is true, as there are many different factors at which contribute to an effective and worthwhile training course. Along with the standard of the teaching, the most important factor will be what the individual and/or their manager wishes to get out of the training, and how much attending an open course will achieve that. If it is one person looking to increase their health and safety knowledge for example and attends a NEBOSH General Certificate open course in order to achieve that qualification then this is absolutely acceptable. In fact, it is actually advisable as delegates on the NEBOSH General Certificate course can learn a lot from the examples and experiences of their fellow course attendees.

Whilst accredited courses like the NEBOSH General Certificate which follow a specific and set syllabus are suitable to be run as open courses, and due to its duration (two weeks of training) is prohibitively expensive to be run as an in-house course anyway, open courses are not really suitable for those topics which require training on specifics to be effective. Examples include hazardous substances/COSHH training where the diverse range of dangerous substances which exist in contrasting places of work means that to be effective in keeping workers safe from harm - which is the primary purpose of health and safety training after all - the training needs to cover the exact and specific risks from the particular substances that those workers are handling, moving and have the potential to encounter. A generic COSHH training course which provides highly general information such as "Don't drop containers" will not be much use; workers need to understand and be aware of the exact dangers and risks associated with the substances they will be working with/around in order for the training to achieve its aim of increasing safety and minimising the potential for accidents and incidents to occur.

In-House Business Coaching

An open course in business coaching which is run like an open training course where a number of people from different companies and industries attend and listen to one tutor (or coach as would be the case here) would not work and is not likely to be found anywhere. This is because business coaching is designed to be performed on a one-to-one basis where the coach works with the individual to create personalised objectives and action plans. This means that all business coaching sessions will need to be performed in-house, with in-house in this context referring more to not being an open course rather than the specific location (i.e. the individual can receive coaching in their own workplace or they can travel to meet the coach somewhere else).

The only slight exception to this is a team building and team development strand of business coaching in which the coach works with a group in order to get them to function much more effectively as a cohesive and productive unit. Although they may have individual sessions with the coach, a lot of work will also involve the group as a whole. This too though is classed as "in-house" as even if the team building activities happen at an external location, the programme is all for workers from the same organisation rather than a general open course which can be booked onto by anyone.