According to a 2017 University of Michigan study, soft skills training boosts productivity and employee retention by 12%, and yields a 256% return on investment.
So, the question is that what can companies do to upgrade the communication skills of their employees? The global spend by fortune 500 companies on communication skills training in 2019 was $3.5 BN USD. Now let’s use the Edgar Dale’s Cone of experience model to calculate the ROI on that spend.
According to Dale’s research, the least effective method of learning is from information presented through verbal symbols, i.e., listening to spoken words. The most effective methods at the bottom, involves direct, purposeful learning experiences, such as hands-on or on the job experience. The cone charts the average retention rate for various methods of teaching. The further you progress down the cone, the greater the learning and the more information is likely to be retained. “action-learning” techniques result in up to 90% retention.
Most of the communications skills course offerings that we researched lies in the category of watch Videos to watch a demonstration. The average retention in that category is ~30%.
There is a minimum leakage of 70% on your training spend. Now imagine a scenario if you could provide a hand’s on, on the job continual training experience and come right to the bottom of the cone where the retention rates are as high as 90%.
That has a significant impact on return on your training spend (ROI). Today using AI, you can create training solutions which are personalized and on the job. A case in example are 2 products that we at myJen have created. USpeek which is to improve oral communication skills and kWurd to improve, your written communication skills.
uSpeek is an AI coach that assesses your mock video on 25 parameters in a matter of minutes and give you details feedback on your strengths and development opportunities. It has insightful analytics built which allows you to monitor, your progress over time and see your rate of improvement.
It is customised for a specific speaking event you might be preparing for. An elevator speech, presentation, interview, or a public speech you can select any one of the categories and get customized feedback. It has in built, learning lessons which comprise videos, exercises, games, and quizzes.
For your organization it gives you insights which help you baseline the oral communication skill levels of your employees at a location, account, team, and project level. You can track and monitor usage and see the rate of learning of different segments of your employee population.
kWurd is a business writing coach. It is an advanced proof-reading tool which works on all editors on google chrome. Writing a Facebook or a LinkedIn post or filling a form a commenting on a you tube video link. Write anything on your chrome browser and kWurd will give you the standard spelling and grammar errors as well as help you get rid of redundant words, call out passive voice, improve your readability by suggesting better word choices and more.
It is an email writing coach with Gmail and Outlook plug ins. On clicking the analyse button it gives you an overall score for your emails and rates it on 7 parameters. Clarity, Writing Style, Communication Style, Empathy, Sentiment & Emotion, Spelling & Grammar and gives overall Word Statistics including pet and filler words.
It gives areas of improvement along with areas of strengths. kWurd Learning Lessons on youTube comprise 25+ videos each one taking up one concept and discussing it in detail.
Kwurd is an excellent tool for Customer Service teams who want to measure the quality of email responses. Was your email assertive and empathetic? Its advanced dashboards can give you the average and individual scores of the email communication of your organization by key client, product, service, team, geography, location.
When you have tools like this you are giving your employees a great opportunity to learn on the job and providing them personalized coaching tips. This will enable them to pick up the concept extremely fast, improve their skills the result of which you will see translate to business outcomes like more satisfied and engaged customers.