Hello ATD Long Island! Spring is upon us and we are heading into it with great events, in-person and virtual. Hopefully you can catch our March profile member at one of them!
For March, we are lucky to introduce you to Linda Berke, President of Taylor Performance Solutions. Ms. Berke is also a former President of our chapter, helping to keep ATD LI a strong resource for the talent development community.
ATD: How did you come to be a part of ATD LI?
LB: When I started my business in 2003, I was looking for groups with the same interest as me and I was introduced to SHRM and they asked me to present at one of their meetings. After I presented at the SHRM meeting, one of the women in the audience suggested I join ATD.
ATD: Where do you work currently and what does a work day look like for you?
LB: I run a training and consulting firm called Taylor Performance Solutions. We have such a variety of projects and clients that a work day might mean working on new training designs, running focus groups/interviewing managers and employees to complete a needs analysis, listening to recorded phone calls to analyze the skills of a call center, going undercover and shopping/eating/being a tourist as part of regular mystery visits/mystery shops at our client locations, delivering training or consulting with management teams on their customer service and sales processes. Pretty much anything that is related to developing custom training and improving service, sales and leadership at a company.
ATD: How did you begin your career in talent development?
LB: I was in a management/sales position and was asked to deliver customer service training one day a week after work to other branches. I absolutely loved it and knew I had found my calling. This was in 1990!
ATD: What do you suggest to new members for them to gain the most benefit from ATD LI?
LB: ATD LI is an amazing, warm, talented and supportive group of talent management professionals. I suggest new members get to know the group and join a committee or join the board. This was suggested to me and I ended up being the President for a few years and was able to work and learn with many talented people.
ATD: What was the most challenging experience you ever had in talent development, and why?
LB: Since we custom design all of our learning experiences and sometimes need to learn about a new industry or business in a short amount of time, all of our projects bring positive challenging experiences! The most important challenges we face on every project are identifying how to align the training to our client’s culture, how to motivate our learners to change and how to design the program in a way that is fun and helps them build new skills quickly.
ATD: What are some of the biggest challenges facing the learning and development field?
LB: From our perspective, the biggest challenges facing the learning and development field is making sure the learning is reinforced after training. We only spend between a few hours and a few days with our learners helping them be better at what they do. Since our focus is on skills such as service, sales or leadership, if the learning is not reinforced and supported after training, it is too easy to fall back into old habits.