Trainer Profile 3: Michael Gordon

Michael Gordon is the Training Manager for Skills Strategies international putting him in charge of all training that goes through the SSI offices. While performing this position Michael is also the trainer you are most likely to see when training the TAE40116 Certificate IV in Training and Assessment at the Balcatta office and online. Along with training and assessment, Michael spent years working in the retail space making him the perfect trainer for all our retail certificates including the Diploma of retail leadership. (and he still had time to sit down and give me all this information) Today I have sat down with Michael to learn about his journey and what motivates him as the head of Skills Strategies world-class training department.

Michaels Journey

Although Michael is one of Skills’ longest-tenured staff members his journey does not begin in the vocational education space. Mike originally went to university and graduated with a degree in Marketing and Management before moving into the retail space. This is where Michael recognized his love for interacting with both staff and customers. Within this sector, Michael worked for thirty years gaining experience across a variety of retail environments from fashion through to not-for-profit. Throughout his time in this sector, Michael naturally began to do some training as an experienced member of staff and realized that his true passion was in passing on the knowledge that he had gained to the future workers in the industry hence the move towards the training space.

This move to focus on retail training is what leads Michael to Skills Strategies International. When contacting Sandra for advice on retail qualifications where he ended up doing some work experience and completing his diploma in Retail management. During this time Michael made an impression with his positive attitude and a true passion for retail and training leading to him being offered a permanent position as part of the SSI team.

After joining the team at SSI as a retail trainer Michael dove headfirst into the culture of continuous improvement and development that is a key part of SSI office culture. This naturally led Michael to complete his Dual Diploma in Training Design and Development and Vocational Education and Training which he showed a natural aptitude and passion for leading him to become one of the premier Training and Assessment trainers in the state.

When asking Michael what makes him love training his passion for contributing to the personal growth of others shone through. The idea of helping someone get the skills and knowledge needed to get their dream job or improve their chances of a promotion or even just build their confidence were all mentioned as key influences on Michael’s passion for training.

Another interesting part of Michael’s trainer journey was his favourite trainer he has had. This was one of his management lecturers at university whose mantra was ‘A degree is just a license to learn when you have completed your course is when the real learning begins. This fits perfectly with SSI’s continuous improvement values.

Through the last year, Michael has had to move much of his training online due to the COVID-19 pandemic where he has fully embraced virtual delivery methods, thriving in this challenging environment, and enjoying the flexibility and new opportunities it offers to both him as a trainer and his students. Michael seeks to always adopt an encouraging and supportive environment for his learners using humour and a relaxed delivery style to make them comfortable. Michael is always available and encourages his students to contact him for any additional support they need to cross any learning barriers they may face believing that a five-minute chat can avoid months of difficulties with a qualification.

Write up by Connor Bright

Marketing Assistant

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