Why Training Doesn’t Work


We’re ending Q3 and heading into Q4 and you know what that means?  Around the end of Q4 people start to think about the new year and things they will resolve to do better.

  1. More time vacationing with family
  2. Go on an Alaskan Cruise
  3. Get in shape
  4. Make more money
  5. Lose weight
  6. Be more intentional
  7. Hire a personal coach

Do any of those sound familiar?  Some may and some may not, but the reality is we all get this inspiration to do something different and change something like a behavior, a habit, or our physiques through weight loss or fitness.  Fitness seems to be a big one, in fact, some may argue that gyms see a hockey stick of enrollment around this time.

My Journey

Back in March of 2018, I started on a health and fitness journey to not only lose weight but get in shape too.  I want to get back to the young man I once was, or close to it.  It hasn’t been easy, as I am sure many of you can attest who have done similar things.  Losing the weight and keeping it off are two very different animals and require discipline.

This takes discipline, but it can be done.

Three weeks ago, I started a regular workout regiment that is NON-NEGOTIABLE.  I do it whether I want to or not…and some days, I really don’t want to.  30 minutes of HIIT and weights four days a week with three days of rest distributed across the week.  It may not sound like it is enough, but trust me, it is.

It takes discipline, I show up and I do the work.

I’m getting stronger, I can feel it.  I’m getting more stamina and energy, people around me can see it.  I have more focus and clarity, as my work testifies.

It takes discipline, but it is worth it for the results.

You improve when you show up

Have you ever worked with a personal trainer or a professional business coach?  If they only showered you with words of encouragement would that make you a better leader, a more successful sales professional, build more muscle mass, or lose weight?

You Want Results? Training Shows You How, but unless you do the work, it is nothing.

My guess is 99.9% of you agree, you must do the work and not just learn how.

Coaches and Trainers ARE absolutely necessary, but if you do nothing with the tools they have given you then you will not see the results.

When you did hire a professional coach, a personal trainer, or join a gym, what shifted inside of your brain?  Was it some event?  I have found that in most cases, yes, it was some event that triggered a response, and sadly that event was probably something negative that made you want to change.

  1. Loss of a family member
  2. Loss of income
  3. Loss of a promotion
  4. Loss of a job
  5. Loss of a relationship
  6. etc.

Our emotions can move mountains.  Think about the last time you did something emotionally driven.  How powerfully did you move?  How motivated were you?  How did others perceive your tenacity? I’m sure the words “Sherman Tank” could have been used to describe you and your determination.

Mindset Shift

You experienced a mindset shift, it was triggered by an emotional response to an event that may have been either positive or negative, but in all likelihood, it was a negative event.  Why do we wait for the negatives to happen in our life before we make positive changes?

Think about that for a bit.

How many sales, product, leadership, etc. pieces of training have you attended?  If you’re a “veteran” salesperson or IT person, you’ve probably been to quite a few, have the coffee mugs, and the t-shirts to prove it.  I know some courses last an entire week, some a few days, and there are one-day workshops you can find that will give you some good insights, but are you continuing the training even after the trainer shows you the “moves”?

Are you working those new sales, product, leadership, etc. “muscles” on a daily basis?

Going through the motions of a typical day? (Old habits?)

What are you doing for 30 minutes each and every morning to build those muscles you found during your week-long training?

This is why training of any kind doesn’t work if you don’t have a mindset shift, you won’t make long term changes that will make you a better employee, salesperson, technologist, manager, IT leader, fit individual, etc.

How do you create a positive mindset shift that creates an emotional trigger that will give you the discipline to show up every day and do the work?  First off, you show up, every day, whether you want to or not.

Your training WILL work, but YOU need to be disciplined and DO THE WORK, every day.  Just like physical fitness training, if you stop the workout, you lose muscle tone.

In Closing

We have a few more ideas to help your teams. If you’d like to discuss them, reach out to me.  I believe there is an opportunity for organizational leaders, to really invest in their team and create a mindset shift that focuses the team on the global mission of the company by supporting their own individual goals and objectives, and it all starts with a business-centric approach.

David A. Chapa, Founder, The CTE Group

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