Revenues are down, stress is up, companies need faster-better-more with fewer and fewer resources.
Obviously there is a need to bring employees up to speed in critical skills so that fewer employees can perform more tasks.
Surprisingly, the critical skills needed are not technical.
Employers need their employees trained in skills such as Customer Service, Leadership, Change Management, Interpersonal Skills. . . skills that have always been called (somewhat pejoratively) "Soft Skills".
A recent study by Grant Thornton LLP identifies "soft skills" as the number one challenge in hiring Accounting professionals.
Soft Skills training is no longer the group-hug, feel-good "trainertainment" class of the past. Training now focuses on research based content, tangible behavior modifications and results oriented learning strategies.
Fortunately, state and federal funding is available to keep up with corporate demand. While the focus of many funding sources remains on tangible and technical skills, soft skills are often allowable as a component of an overall project.
In Texas, the Skills Development Fund and the Skills for Small Business program are available to help industry fund needed training.
When times are hard, it's important for companies to be "soft".