Work Training Course


Regular member
Site Supporter
Aug 2, 2006
Years ago when I started at a global manufacture and supply group in big Pharma, we were all sent on a course on how to have fun at work... there was a vid of an American fishmongers with the employees lobbing tuna fish about... these guys looked cheerful enough and seemed to be having fun... when someone asked what similarities there were between our 12hour nightshift job picking pharma ingredients for drug substances and chucking fish about, the manager got the right arse ache... then someone else pointed out that the hour spent on the course could have been spent getting ahead of the hourly target so WE could have a bit of fun, he went totally ballistic... some bosses are just morons... a lot of these courses are just tick box exercises to make you think your employers give a flying one... when really, they don't...
I think that is a famous fish market in Seattle - seen it many times, always the same plaice ;)

In my experience (mainly in financial services) it's often not the operational managers who are pushing for this, but a combination of Execs (to be seen to be managing the regulatory and reputational risk) and HR departments justifying their existence / empire building.
Equally - the courses themselves are targeted at the lowest common denominator - rather than the average. Hence they are really tedious.

Another issue is that the vast majority of non-technical training really boils down to re-inforcing common sense. So by the time you are late 20s you'll have seen most of the topics - and everything after is just regurgitation.
But as we all know - common sense really isn't that common.
I've actually found constantly re-inventing the wheel creates more confusion as people are cross-referencing to their existing knowledge and terminology all the time.

It also works well for "employee metrics" to show how much training you're investing in for colleagues! Investors in People anyone?

You can probably tell that I'm a cynic!


Serial Blanker
Site Supporter
Jan 19, 2013
I was subjected to attended a virtual training course for work today, entitled: "Compassionate Leadership" - It is a mandatory requirement for all staff at my level.

The course consisted of narration over slides, a few videos (mainly by Americans), and a bunch of "break out groups" in which we were to discuss amongst ourselves.
Where do they get such utter and complete PC BLX from ferrcrissakes! :mad: It was 3 and a half hours of a complete waste of my time when I could have been doing something useful and productive.

I should point out that I don't lead anyone, nor am I likely to do so. I pointed this out to my manager whose response was "staff of a junior level look up to you". Good luck to 'em then I say! ;)

But perhaps the very worst part of it all is that I found out today that this was Part 1 of 2 !!! - I've got another 4 hours of it next week! AAAAaaaagghhhhhh ! :mad::mad::mad:
I feel your pain - the amount of mandatory courses we have to take at present employer each year is eye watering.


Regular member
Site Supporter
Jul 15, 2009
A view from the other side. It is very difficult to keep your temper when faced with incompetence that you are told could have an impact on the health of the unborn baby your wife is carrying. Been there, afraid to say I got angry and shouted/banged my fist on a table. We were quickly ushered in to see a consultant we had been told we could not see. Things were so badly organised that The Boss went to one ante-natal class just before giving birth. And for the birth of both of my children I had to inform the midwives that the baby's head was visible after they told me that the birth was nowhere near happening.

I had to write a letter of complaint about a sister who shouted at me for ringing the bell to gain access to the maternity unit when I went to visit my daughter and newly born grandson. I was let in to the "secure" unit by a patient who had no idea who I was.

I have also had to hand over phone calls to The Boss so I didn't say anything I might regret. I received a personal apology from my consultant re the way I was treated by nurses.

And you are left speechless when a cardiac registrar asks you why they are seeing you because they don't have the notes on your case nor the results from a test carried out three weeks earlier in the same department. I was asked to attend to discuss the results.

The Boss was a GP receptionist for 21 years and I can honestly say the only things we argued about were the different perceptions from either side of the reception desk.
I believe the incident I mentioned Neil was a young chap who wanted to accompany his girlfriend to a scan after being repeatedly told he would not be allowed into the hospital due to the existing Covid regulations. He was stopped at the door by a midwife but, pushed past her. When he was asked to exist the building he then took it upon himself to damage hospital property. The hospitals rules are there for a reason. There there to protect everyone. The idiot included. 🙄


Red Leader
Staff member
Site Supporter
Aug 8, 2001
It's like the idiot in A&E who tried to set fire to the LGI and threatened staff with a screwdriver a few weeks back - they need making an example of to others who think it's okay to carry on, but instead excuses are made and it's their 'mental health'

Neil ofthe nene

Doing things differently.
Site Supporter
May 4, 2009
On workplace training in general I was very lucky to work for Barclays and attended many good courses that prepared me for the gradual climb up the ladder as well as cementing the technical skills for the job I was doing. But there were some stinkers and even on good courses some segments were laughable.

I recall one exercise that had obviously been developed to brainwash us into thinking that money was not the reason we went to work. We had to fill in a questionnaire and the resulting answers, surprise surprise, indicated that money was not the primary reason for working. It came low down on the list of reasons. The people on the course tried to dispute the outcome but the tutor insisted that as we had answered the questions without pressure the result had to be true. I asked one question of the group "Who, if they won millions on the lottery would be at work the next day?".

It so happened that the director in control of my division of the bank at the time, Cheque and Credit Clearing, was sitting in on the session. I had worked with her when she was a branch manager. She looked at me and said "Not me, no way I would carry on working.", everyone else agreed. I looked at the tutor and asked if the point were proven that we come to work for the money. He had no answer.

I also did an excellent course with the OU on management. That was an eye opener and led me to read further on the subject and that definitely helped when I eventually got my own department to run.