It is easy to dismiss training that is seen as unimportant without really understanding its value. Sometimes, if you are being asked to learn something completely new to implement in your office it can be difficult to see how it will fit in with your work day, which can lead to people opting out of sessions that could really help their career development.
However, often these skills that seem useless can have huge effects on your workforce. A good example of this is social media. Many workplaces dismiss this as a meaningful training option - after all, everybody has a Facebook account these days, surely? Besides which, most managers want to stop their workforce going on social media, not encourage it.
However, ignoring this would be a mistake. Social media is one of the main methods of communication for huge swathes of the population, so neglecting it means missing out on a major opportunity to interact with potential target markets.
To illustrate how important some organisations believe social media to be, one needs only look as far as the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO). Since 2010, the FCO has spent a total of £92,574 on training its employees in the use of social media.
An example of a course the FCO sends its employees on is 'using social media in a crisis situation'. This involves monitoring events, tracking UK nationals and providing people with regular, easy-to-access updates and advice about the situation. Social media is not just about 'likes' and 'retweets'; it can be a very useful tool in the right hands.
The point of this is not simply to encourage you to sign up for a social media course - although you may now feel that you want to - but instead to highlight how a type of training many would see as useless has proven to be so vital the government is willing to spend almost £100,000 on it.
It is for this reason that training your employees as much as possible should not be neglected. Just because you are unfamiliar with a skill doesn't mean it is not useful. Your company might be getting on fine without it, but you should be setting your sights higher than 'fine'.
Most of the time, a high-quality venue will not provide training days unless they will have a concrete benefit to a workforce. You don't have to sign up for every single one - some might not actually be suitable for your workplace - but you should certainly keep an open mind when you are looking through what is available.
Out-of-office training has a number of other benefits, as it increases morale and teamwork, and generally makes your employees more knowledgeable, capable and better at their jobs. You might find that unusual training day you saw advertised could be exactly what your company needs to reach the top, if only you would give it a chance.