Business banking training programmes will inherently aim to develop the skills of employees both old and new in order to maintain operations at the highest level.

In the modern banking sector, however, traditional methods of training are proving to be ineffective in securing a return on investment when compared to newer, innovative techniques.

In particular, perceptual thinking is now being used by corporations as a method of improving learning retention across an entire hierarchy. At MDA Training, we specialise in utilising perceptual thinking techniques in experiential learning programmes and business banking training courses.

One area of perceptual thinking that is proven to be effective in improving retention is contextual cues. But what exactly are contextual cues?

What are contextual cues in workplace training?

Previously, we have discussed the benefit of contextual cues as part of our wider focus on perceptual thinking in experiential learning programmes.

More specifically, contextual cues are hints or replications of the environment of original learning. This, in turn, will prompt individuals to retain and recall specific information as they will be familiar with how they learnt it previously.

Creating contextual cues in the learning environment that can later be reinstated in the application environment, thus aiding learning embedment.

How can contextual cues be used in business banking training?

Banking employees have so much information to remember on a continual basis. From understanding specific products and services to working in line with legislation and compliance regulations, it can become difficult to retain everything without an effective learning solution.

Fortunately, contextual cues work to ensure that employees stand the best chance of recalling information they have previously been given, in three ways:

Reinstating the actual learning environment

Even if it’s conducting a training session in the same room as was used previously, or creating a similar environment for employees, they are more likely to become familiar with their surroundings, and more importantly, what they learnt in these surroundings.

The advantage of this is that when it comes to learning something beneficial a second or third time, employees are more likely to retain it.

Using the same learning methods

With so much information on so many topics to retain for individuals in any sub-sector of banking, it can become even more confusing for employees if several learning methods are used to try and develop skills in the same area.

For example, if a business simulation has been created to work on relationship management skills for bankers, the employees who took part in this will more likely be able to recall the information a year later if another business simulation is created on the same topic, as opposed to another method like a webinar, as they will be more familiar with the original simulation.

Clustering relevant information together

Leaders will already have an idea of what they want to prioritise in their business banking training programmes. To get through to employees and resonate key information and KPIs, they can cluster together the most important parts and focus on them throughout.

Therefore, when it comes to recalling the information down the line, employees will be likely to remember the information they need the most.

How can contextual cues benefit business leaders?

As well as proving to be effective for employees, contextual cues will give leaders an indication of how their use of contextual cues is benefiting their business banking training programmes.

Firstly, they will be able to see whether or not employees are in fact retaining the information they need to, and secondly, they will be able to see which employees are recalling information correctly, and those who aren’t, allowing them to review their internal training processes.

Business banking training programmes can be difficult to construct and maintain, as there is so much to learn for employees at all levels. Utilising contextual cues as part of a wider focus on perceptual thinking methods, however, can prove to secure a return on investment and improve learning retention throughout the workplace.