Recruit, Inspire & Retain

December 2004

Ideas for "Marketing" and Providing "Customer Service" to Current and Potential Employees

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HOLIDAY SHOPPING SHORTCUT! Give the gift of learning to all – Buy TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC. gift certificates for books and other resources
bullet 33 Ideas to Recruit the Employees You Want
bullet Who's Wearing Fun Meters?
bullet The Worst Jobs: another opportunity to win prizes
bullet Cool Calls
bullet What Leaders Do
bullet The Need for Rapid E-Learning Development
bullet Vision Writing: Retain Employees by Making Them An Integral Part
bullet Things to Do This Month/Conferences to Attend/Ways to Volunteer & Give/Enter Contests & Get Recognition
(Call 800-469-3560 or E-mail for ways to celebrate the listed special days of the month!)

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33 Ideas to Recruit the Employees You Want

  1. Anticipate staffing needs.
  2. Investigate the employment of older workers in your organization. Call AARP for more information.
  3. Workers with disabilities may be a target- market segment that will help meet your staffing needs.
  4. Target disadvantaged youth as a market segment to meet recruiting needs.
  5. Exiting military are looking for career opportunities in the civilian world.
  6. Prison release programs have job candidates who are looking for a second chance.
  7. Work with government funded employment and training programs that will assist you in the recruitment process.
  8. Look carefully at internal issues before employing non-traditional workers. See if diversity training is appropriate for supervisors and managers of these new workers.
  9. Participate in Junior Achievement and other youth, business education programs. These programs help establish your organization as an employer of first choice and set in the students' minds the career you are trying to fill.
  10. Consider your image as an employer and develop strategies to enhance your image as an employer of first choice.
  11. Use different newspapers to advertise your recruitment message. Don't overlook the local and community papers.
  12. Place testimonial advertisements with messages from satisfied associates.
  13. Use compelling graphics and ad copy.
  14. Stress your benefits. Sell the opportunity!
  15. Use recruiting advertising agencies for more effective advertising.
  16. Limit the number of recruiting messages used in one medium. You don't want to appear desperate (even though you are!).
  17. Offer coupons in your newspaper ads for candidates to complete and mail in.
  18. Staff your telephones on Sunday so candidates can call for information at that time.
  19. Institute a recruitment hot line so interested individuals can call to get information on the kinds of positions that are open.
  20. Use the Internet to publicize your organization and specific job vacancies.
  21. Tap into your company's resources and work with your marketing/advertising departments for recruitment ideas.
  22. Investigate the use of cable television.
  23. Use radio with print advertising for best results.
  24. Hold an open house to attract career shifters or to fill multiple positions.
  25. Join with other employers and participate in career fairs and job fairs.
  26. Develop recruitment videos to play at career fairs and open houses.
  27. Create recruitment literature for use in all recruiting activities.
  28. Offer free career planning workshops to the public. At the end, sell them on careers with your organization.
  29. Use posters and signs with tear-off application forms in grocery stores, banks, community centers, laundromats, churches.
  30. Try telemarketing, reaching your prospective candidate by phone.
  31. Investigate the use of temporary placement agencies.
  32. Try part-time employees and job sharing as flexible means to attract a wider range of candidates.
  33. Investigate the use of telecommuters to attract more job candidates.

Used with permission from Cathy Fyock, a TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC. Associate.

  Get The Best, by TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC.  own Cathy Fyock
  Straight Talk for Employers!: Recruit, Inspire & Retain Great Employees (audiotape set with 30 5-minute segments packed with ideas — including 4 on recruitment planning & interviewing by TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC.  Carolyn B. Thompson
Both available at (10% off by typing “RIR” in Special Instructions) Or e-mail

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Recruitment, inspiration, training, and retention ideasHave a recruitment, inspiration, training, or retention idea or question? Ask by clicking the question mark, and we’ll post your idea or question (and the answer) in Answers & Ideas on Recruiting, Inspiring, Training, & Retaining Great Employees at


* ViaHealth staff wore them during their JCAHO survey.
* The Valentine family will all get one for Christmas, saying the Venturous Valentines.
* Strange Places Fun Meters are found: When someone calls to order Fun Meters, we always ask how they heard about the buttons. This month one was found on the floor of a steel mill in West Virginia, looking really old & rusty. The person who found it thought it was cool, saw the TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC.  label on the back, and called to order!

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The Worst Jobs: another opportunity to win prizes

Think your job’s bad? Try dragging a bedspread around tick-ridden thickets, pausing regularly in the 100-degree heat not to squeegee the sweat from your brow but to tweeze dozens of the tiny pests into a collection jar. Reconsidering your career choice? Imagine training for years as a veterinarian, only to find yourself engaged in lab work designed to make the tail-wagging puppies in your charge sick, knowing all the while that when the study is over, the pooches will be euthanized. Having a bad day? Just be glad you’re not spending it in minute examination of unusual growths on a dozen or so people’s posteriors.

But don’t feel sorry for the staffers employed in these travails. They probably wouldn’t want your job any more than you’d want theirs. Job horror is in the eye of the job holder. And to the great benefit of society, most of these job holders simply don’t regard their occupation as being that horrible—or, at any rate, are willing to endure the horrors for the opportunity to do virtuous and important work. We salute them.

From The Worst Jobs in Science: A Sequel

Email your list of worst jobs and we’ll send you the famous TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC.  prize and print it in the next Recruit, Inspire & Retain.

PowerPoint screen show that features 40 humorous posters that are pre-set to work on “auto-pilot”. Makes a great “WELCOME” message or enhancement to your session break. Runs about 5 minutes, and is set to automatically recycle. You can add in your own slides. (a great place to slip in your objectives!) Get your PowerPoint screen show here!
BUY PACKS of inspirational posters. (Do a Product Search for POSTERS, then look for Training Room Posters (30/pack).)

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* TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC.  Associate Anne Harlow, sent us this Grateful Exercise for Thanksgiving:
“There will always be people who have more than we do, and less than we have. We need to be aware of what we have and be thankful for it.
• Make a “thanks” notebook. Write what you are thankful for in your book each day.
• Share what you are thankful for each day first thing in the morning. Ask others to say what they are thankful for, too.
• Plan a “thanks” race. Ask your co-workers, family, or friends to make a list, as quickly as possible, of things they are thankful for. See who gets to 25 things to be thankful for first. Try a bonus round: aim for 50 things to be thankful for!
“I’m thankful that I have you to love and care for. Let’s count our blessings each day.”
Thanks, Anne!
* Christian Management Report published “Real Work” Interviews: A Tool for Making Better Hiring Decisions, by TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC.  President, Carolyn B. Thompson, in the December issue.

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What Leaders Do

LEADERS (whether in the family, in business, in government, or in education) recognize the difference between intentions and accomplishments.

LEADERS help people to see themselves better than they are.

LEADERS help those who deserve it, not just those who need it.

LEADERS say "Let's do it," not "You go do it."

LEADERS understand that some people will inevitably sell out to the evil side. Instead of wasting your time wondering why; spend your time discovering who.

LEADERS have a coach. When you're playing the game, it's hard to think of everything.

LEADERS help those who are doing poorly to do well and help those who are doing well to do even better.

LEADERS always start with where people are before they try to take them to where they want them to go.

Adapted from quotations by Jim Rohn.

The Leadership Genius of George W. BushThe Leadership Genius of George W. Bush: 10 Common Sense Lessons from the Commander-in-Chief, by Carolyn B. Thompson & James W. Ware.
Understanding Leadership Competencies, by Patricia Guggenheimer & Mary Diane Szuk
Both available at (10% off by typing “RIR” in Special Instructions). Or e-mail

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The Need for Rapid E-Learning Development

For decades, technology-based training has promised to give us the power to increase the scale and reach of training.

As we’ve rushed into e-learning, however, many have found that the time and cost to build excellent content sometimes overcomes these advantages. The "traditional" approach takes many months to build and can cost tens of thousands of dollars per learning hour.

Many training needs come with urgent development timelines (e.g., get this program out in the next few weeks) and short shelf life (e.g., in three months this will be out-of-date). Often these types of training have smaller budgets, smaller teams, and require the subject-matter experts to share their knowledge more directly with the learners.

There's a new training category emerging, called "Rapid E-Learning." It’s an approach that changes the development model, the tools, and costs dramatically less.

Rapid E-Learning Defined
These methods are a cross between knowledge management and e-learning. Knowledge management uses collaborative technologies to encourage subject matter experts to share their knowledge and e-learning delivers skills and knowledge in a streamlined and methodical way.

Rapid E-Learning:
- Training that can be developed in less than 3 weeks
- Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) act as the primary development resource
- A well-known tool (e.g., PowerPoint) or user-friendly templates form the starting point for the e-learning
- It includes simple assessment, feedback and tracking
- Media elements that enhance learning but do not create technology barriers may be included (e.g., voice)
- Learning modules can be taken in one hour or less

The key to a successful Rapid E-Learning program is having a development process (including tools) that makes it easy and quick for a SME to develop a course.

When to Use Rapid E-Learning
Consider using Rapid E-Learning for these types of content:
* Helping people learn the difference between what they did before and what has changed
* Content that will go out of date
* Topics that require frequent and regular updates
* Issues/skills that must be addressed immediately
* Topics that may preface a group training or more detailed blended learning

Notice that, in the list above, mastery or certification of skills isn’t included. Rapid E-Learning techniques are best used for teaching conceptual information. Rapid E-Learning can be blended with other forms of training to achieve higher level skills, or they may morph into skills development training over time.

An Example
Bayer HealthCare used Rapid E-Learning to provide safety refresher training and continuous product updates. They created a Rapid E-Learning training for the field sales and service staff.

  • Sales reps are responsible for selling Bayer's diagnostic systems. They need to be kept up-to-date with the latest advancements in product and medical technologies. If the sales representatives don't have the latest information, they could end up conveying out-of-date research or wrong product information when making a sale.

  • Service reps maintain Bayer's high-tech medical laboratory equipment, and work with lab samples, needles and other tools. Poor or non-existent training can result in injuries or illnesses. They need to be continuously updated on safety procedures to keep injury rates as low as possible.

Within Bayer's field sales and service organization, there are in-field trainers who are responsible for keeping the sales and service reps up-to-date. The trainers need to provide timely training around the world. Although the trainers were very used to dealing with highly technical medical equipment, they were not particularly PC-savvy. Bayer HealthCare was using Lectora software, but they found that with Lectora alone, it was difficult for non-PC savvy trainers to make the shift from on-the-job training to e-learning. The structure and detail required was difficult for the in-field trainers to master because it was very different from the face to face training they were used to doing.

The solution was to provide the in-field trainers with an easy-to-use product, called Articulate, which converts PowerPoint screen shows to Flash with audio narration, which can then be integrated into Lectora software.

One of the keys to this group's success with Rapid E-Learning is training that helps the in-field trainers learn how to create Articulate modules. They learn templates, color scheme, fonts and course length.
Once they’re trained, Bayer HealthCare can create and deploy an e-learning training in about 3 weeks. If a high-quality PowerPoint screen show already exists, then the turnaround time is even less—10 business days.

Like many medical organizations, these learners work long days and usually fit training in before their day starts or after it ends. The Bayer HealthCare standard is to create small training modules that focus on product training. They found that if a course is over an hour long, the complaints roll in and the course completion rate goes down significantly.

Another factor that helped the Rapid E-Learning succeed is that most of the trainers are good communicators. They are former sales and marketing professionals and trainers, so they had good training skills already. If that weren't the case, it would be a lot tougher to create quality content fast.

Last year, the Bayer HealthCare team deployed 19 courses using the Rapid E-Learning methodology.

Excerpted from a newly released industry study called Rapid E-Learning: What Works?: Tools, Techniques and Best Practices.

Blended E-Learning, by Larry Pielawski & David Metcalf

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Vision Writing: Retain Employees by Making Them An Integral Part

Use these instructions to write & come to consensus on a vision — for a job, for a team, for a department, or for the whole organization:

  1. Have each person write the vision — where they want to go/the team/the department/the organization.

  2. Form 2 circles of chairs facing each other. Half the group sits on the chairs of the inner circle facing outwards and the other half of the people sit on the outer circle of chairs facing inwards.

  3. Each person reads their vision to the person they are facing. They then massage their visions until they both agree on one vision. Once all the pairs have a joint vision the inside group moves to the right and the outside group moves to the right. Continue the massaging, writing, and moving until they have shared their vision with everybody.

  4. Ask if there is any agreement on the vision. Have several people read out what they have.

  5. You will find there is great agreement and you may have the vision that everybody is comfortable working with. If not, work as a whole group until unanimity is achieved.

Speed Caution: you need to allow plenty of time. Some people will feel that it is not worth the time, but persist. Their resistance lessens as the consensus grows.

Besides arriving at a vision that is acceptable to all, the really big benefit is the extraordinary conversations people have had about where they want to take the organization. You can create some interesting changes & achieve extraordinary results in profitability and in reducing costs when staff are in charge of where you’re going!

Call TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC.  at 800-469-3560 for more ideas!

Organizational Vision, Values, & Mission, by Cynthia Scott, Dennis Jaffe & Glenn Tobe
Successful Strategic Planning, by Stephen Haines
Both available at (10% off by typing “RIR” in Special Instructions). Or e-mail

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Recruitment, inspiration, training, and retention ideasHave a recruitment, inspiration, training, or retention idea or question? Ask by clicking the question mark, and we’ll post your idea or question (and the answer) in Answers & Ideas on Recruiting, Inspiring, Training, & Retaining Great Employees at


December 7 – Japan attacked Pearl Harbor (1941)
December 8 – A Charlie Brown Christmas debuted (1965)
December 10 – Mighty Mouse debuted, & the 1st Nobel Peace Prize was awarded (1901)
December 11 – John D. Rockefeller donated the land for the United Nations (1946)
December 13 – Ice Cream Come patented (1903) & Coca-Cola’s 1st headquarters opened in Atlanta, GA (1898)
December 17 – Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker premiered in St. Petersburg, Russia (1892)
December 20 – 1st built-in bath tub (1842)
December 21 – Anesthetic was first used (to amputate a leg, in 1846)
December 22 – Christmas Tree lights first offered for sale (1882)
December 26 – Coffee Percolator patented (1865)
December 28 – Chewing Gum patented (1869)
December 30 – 1st Color TV offered for sale (1953)

Week of December 5 – Civil Rights Week, Human Rights Week, National Drunk Drivers Awareness Week
Week of December 12 – Tell Someone They’re Doing a Good Job Week

December 11 – Most Boring Celebrities of the Year Convention
December 12 – Poinsettia Day
December 13 – National Cocoa Day
December 15 – National Lemon Cupcake Day
December 16 – Eat What You Want Day & National Chocolate Covered Anything Day (serendipity!)
December 17 – Underdog Day & National Maple Syrup Day (eat pancakes & pick a bad football team for Sunday’s game)
December 19 – National Oatmeal Muffin Day
December 20 – Games Day
December 21 – Chaos Day & Look at the Bright Side Day & National Flashlight Day (use your flashlight to look at the bright side of the chaos you’re in the middle of!)
December 24 – National Egg Nog Day
December 25 – Christmas Day & National Pumpkin Pie Day (THAT’S a no-brainer combo!)
December 26 – Boxing Day & Kwanzaa begins & National Candy Cane Day & National Whiner’s Day (whine about having too many holidays the day after Christmas!)
December 27 – National Fruitcake Day
December 28 – Card Playing Day & National Chocolate Day (spend the day playing cards and eating chocolate!)
December 29 – National Chocolate Again Day (I’m loving December more & more!)
December 30 – National Bicarbonate of Soda Day
December 31 – New Year’s Eve & Make Up Your Mind Day & You’re All Done Day

December 13-14, 2004
Case Manager Certification Workshop, Ramada Plaza & Conference Center, Columbus, OH,

January 5-8, 2005
The Special Event Conference Trade Show, Miami Beach Convention Center, Miami Beach, FL,

February 13-15, 2005
ASAE Great Ideas Conference, The Sheraton Wild Horse Pass Resort, Phoenix, AZ, 

February 28-March 2, 2005
Training 2005 Conference & Expo, New Orleans, LA,

March 6-10, 2005
HDI Annual Conference & Expo, The Venetian Resort, Las Vegas, NV, 

March 14-16, 2005
SHRM 22 Annual Employment Law & Legislative Conference, Capital Hilton, Washington, D.C.,

April 8-10, 2005
20th International Human Conference, Saratoga Springs Convention Center, NY,
April 11-13, 2005
28th Annual Conference & Exposition of the SHRM Global Forum, Chicago, IL, 

Ta-Da! International at reaches out to children, teens, and adults who are experiencing any extraordinary challenge in their life.


Help a child learn to play a string instrument! Shop at and 50% of your purchases goes to the PMF Youth String Program. For more information on the program, visit

Charities Can Use Your Frequent Flier Miles – American gives $1 for every 3 miles your donate to Make-a Wish Foundation or American Miles for Kids (transports seriously ill children in need of medical treatment).

Other airlines have similar programs United gives to 17 charities including the UPS Olympics, Continental gives to American Red Cross, Make-a Wish Foundation and Healing the Children.

Delta gives to many charities including CARE, United Way and Fisher House (providing travel for families with military personnel wounded in Iraq).

To give, go to each airline’s web site.

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Copyright 2004 TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC. All rights reserved.

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