At Mid America Metals we’re committed to the growth and development of our employees and have designed multiple training courses to support that. In fact we are so passionate about employee training that we have invested in a training department so we can be on the cutting edge of training technology. Our Director of Training, Jeff Wilhoit, has an extensive background in training and developing curriculum having worked for corporations such as Hallmark Cards and Bass Pro Shops. Jeff has taken the training to another level with our creative training materials and has made the classes not only informative but FUN! Here are a few examples of why we feel our people are the most highly trained in the industry.
Our training department has created innovative custom web based e-learning courses that provide up-to-date training that is specific for Mid America Metals. These e-learning classes are delivered through a special Mid America Metals education website which includes testing after each course and tracking. This web based training is combined with hands-on training in the field and in the office for a blended learning environment. Classes include many safety courses such as respirator training, chemical safety and personal protective equipment to sales and management classes on topics such as communication, organization, and computer skills.
Training videos are quickly becoming a great way to educate our employees on a variety of skills. If your vision of our training videos includes a VCR and a VHS tape made in 1985 about an outdated technique with a room full of yawning employees…think again! Our training videos are custom made in-house at the new Mid America Metals Productions located in the corporate office. Complete with state-of-the-art HD camera and computer editing equipment, this high tech editing suite allows us to quickly make professional looking training videos specific to the topic we’re focusing on using our own people as the actors. The video can then be viewed over the web, using our own “employee only website” or shown on a DVD in the various offices around the country. With a turnaround time of usually less than a week from concept to finished product, this is a very useful tool for training employees on new techniques and the latest products from our Research and Development Center in Kansas City, MO.
With some topics nothing beats a good instructor led training session from our own subject matter experts…our own employees. Throughout the year we gather around the classrooms in our various offices throughout the country and learn from our master refinishers on topics like scratch removal and polishing or even our sales team will role-play a sales call. From time to time we also utilize nationally known industry experts and consultants to train our employees on the latest techniques and management skills in the industry. We also send many of our employees to specialized schools to sharpen their skills.
Technology is great but sometimes it’s best to have a good old fashion handbook or printed training material. We pioneered this in our industry when we developed and wrote the “Metals Refinishers Handbook” in 1990. Many handbooks have been developed over the years to help in the training process. New employees are given a New Employee Handbook on day one which informs our new hires of our policies, benefits, history, organizational structure and culture. However the biggest use of printed training materials is with our testing. To move up the ladder in Operations, employees must pass a rigorous test. Other forms of testing are done on an annual basis.