When Training Counts

Weeks ago if you asked my son what he wanted to be when he grows up and he would have proudly exclaimed, “A pirate!” This week he has received a lesson in what it really means to be a pirate thanks to the news and some father/son discussions.

I watched the news tonight and felt joy that Captain Richard Phillips has been rescued, but the story took an interesting turn for me personally when anchor Brian Williams went on to say that the successful rescue mission was due to the training that the Navy SEALS received.

We all know that it is not an easy task to even become a Navy SEAL. Only one out of four recruits completes the initial training (which takes over 3 years). So what kind of ongoing training do these elite men receive that enables them to make such rescues?

According to Williams’ report tonight SEALS are typically on a cycle of 6-months deployment followed by 18-months training. Rinse. Repeat.

Ironically when you look at the Navy SEALS Web site their slogan is “Small Investment, Big Real-World Dividends.”

What kind of investment do we make with our training? And what kind of dividends do we see?

About Lori Reed

Lori Reed, coauthor of Workplace Learning & Leadership: A Handbook for Library and Non-Profit Trainers, is a learning and communication strategist with more than twenty years experience in learning and development. A 2009 Library Journal Mover & Shaker and a 2010 "One to Watch" for paralibrarians, Lori graduated cum laude from East Carolina University with a Bachelor of Science in Communication. Lori is a certified Synchronous Learning Expert and a North Carolina Master Trainer and has traveled across North America speaking about libraries and training.


  1. Lori,

    Just today I blogged about some of the dividends that a dedication to training provides. In short, while it was unanticipated, the best thing to come out of Sacramento’s 27 Things program so far has been the opportunity to learn more about the personal side of the folks with whom I work. No doubt everyone participating is learning a lot that will impact their job performance and job satisfaction but just connecting on a more personal level with people I *thought* I knew is awesome, too.

  2. Chris, Thank you for your comment and I can’t agree more. My most memorable moment was when a maintenance worker came to me with tears in her eyes and thanked me for including her in the training. She said before 23 Things she felt that the library only saw her as the woman who cleans the restrooms. Training has impact in ways that we can never know. In fact, if my first EMT instructor had not been so amazing I may have chosen a very different path. The whole reason I was in EMT school as opposed to college was burnout on academics.

Speak Your Mind