Welcome to Part 1 of Writing Amazing Job Instructions. I'm so pleased that you have taken this step to improve your skills as a supervisor or front line manager. Whatever your title, if you have to instruct people as part of your job, what you learn over the next two weeks will make your job easier and help your team perform better.

In each part of this e-course you'll receive an e-mail like this one. It will have a video for you to watch: none are more than 3 minutes. There will be a small summary of the points from the lesson, and there will be a short "homework" assignment. You'll get the most out of this program if you do the homework, because most people learn best when they practice. If you follow the homework, and the end of this course you'll have a job instruction ready to use and the sense of pride of accomplishing it.

If you have questions, send us a note at We'll pull the questions together and answer them in the next part of the course.

In most training the trainer just starts into how to do the task. There is no orientation about what the job is or why it matters. Before you even start the actual training it is critical that you get the person interested in the job. People who understand the purpose of their work will do amazing things well for a long time. Think about emergency volunteers doing sandbagging to protect a house from flooding. The work isn't glamourous, it goes on and on, but because the objective is clear in everyone's mind, they keep at it. 

It's the same at work. You need to show people why the task they are learning matters to your customer. Does it help improve the safety of the product. Does the result of their task make the product better suited to the customers' needs? Does it make the product look nicer or sound quieter or louder. Or maybe the task is designed to make it easier for others to do their work. The specific benefit to your customer, or to the other employees, will be different for every job.

Your task as a supervisor or front line manager is to be able to tell the person why their job is important. When you get the person interested in the job, they will be mentally ready to learn from you.

Pick a job that you know you will need to train people for in the next month or so. Don't pick too big a job. Skills should be taught in small doses - let the student master one element of the work, then add more. It's like training for a sport. You train basic skills like catching or hitting before training hitting strategy. 

For that one task that you will train, identify what it is that makes that task important to the customer or to others in the workplace. Why is it important that this task get done well.

Thanks for being part of the course. 

See you next time. In the meantime, if you want to have a conversation about how the performance in your organization can improve dramatically by increasing the skills of your supervisors and front-line managers, please click here.

Good training!

Hugh Alley
First Line Training Inc.

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