Corporate training – No train, no gain

When asked to write about trains, I immediately put on my conductor hat and yelled “choo choo!”. After my assistant told me that it was a different type of “train”, I nearly fired her on the spot. Now I’m feeling calmer, and though I’m still wearing my conductor hat (and nothing else), I’m ready to write about corporate training.

The irony is not lost on me. I already provide language training as the core part of my business model, but now I am supposed to offer other types of training to my employees? Seems like a scam. Why can’t they just do their Gymglish lessons like everyone else? We have a 4.6-star rating in the Apple Store, for f”&(‘s sake.

Still, I’m not a monster, I provide my staff with the training. I’m not fully convinced that this sort of practice is valuable for a team, especially if it gives employees personal satisfaction. But if it increases key performance indicators like profitability, I’m willing to try. With that said, here are more thoughts on the most relevant corporate training that we provide for the staff at Gymglish.

  1. Hard skills and soft skills

Hard skills are tangible skills like software mastery, coding in Python or Java, or legal knowledge, while soft skills are more interpersonal, and include things like problem-solving, decision-making and communication. At Gymglish, we’ve decided to entirely separate the two skill sets, which is why none of our engineers are allowed to interact with other humans. Combining these two skill sets may well be desirable, but how to balance them? At the intersection of hard and soft skills, we find language training, which requires concrete knowledge but also provides benefits to interpersonal relationships. Did I mention that Gymglish provides language training?

  1. Peer to Peer learning

Does this just mean talking to your fellow team members? I’m amazed that someone managed to make it sound like a technology, but yes, I suppose people have things that they can teach each other by speaking. So I guess every CEO should carve out some time for their staff to speak freely to each other, but only within certain hours. As for me, I consider myself peerless, so I won’t be participating.

  1. Coaching

Coaching is one of those trends that just won’t die out. Whether it’s management coaching, career coaching, life coaching, pet coaching, investment coaching or coach coaching, hiring someone with insights on fields you’d like to develop is not a bad idea. Personally, I give my coaches little whistles to wear around their necks and little uniforms like a referee. Blowing the whistle disrupts my office, while also emitting a high-frequency sound which makes my dogs bark wildly. Everybody wins.

  1. Microlearning

Who knew that learning in small doses regularly over the long term can favor knowledge acquisition with high retention rates? Oh, that’s right, we did. Get on our level, everyone else, we’ve been preaching about microlearning since before it was cool. And no, looking up sports scores on your phone every half hour doesn’t count. Also, go do your Gymglish please. 

Gymglish CEO Todd Fakerton


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