L&D: Sourcing Versus Learning Via Performance Support

Sometimes Performance Support is About Learning

And other times it is not.

It is sometimes about Sourcing versus Learning.


It’s OK to create something for “look-up and then forgetaboutit!” EPSS is most often exactly for that! But don’t call that Learning.

Performance Competence requires both Learning (recall) and Sourcing – both recall and forgetaboutit. Focus on Performance and Enable That!

Is it *Learning* if one looks it up, uses it, and then can and does FORGETABOUTIT? I don’t think so. That’s just good Performance Support.

If one can “source info” and then forgetaboutit – is that Learning? Or is it Sourcing? EPSS can blend w Learning – but is not the same IMO.

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L&D: Performance Competence Development Paths

General Framework for a Path/Menu 

The following is an example Path/Menu framework of 4 segments of where the 3 segments of B-M-E — Beginning-Middle-End — of my starter framework for a Path/Menu.


The Same Framework for Stating the Performance Competence Requirements At Any Level


Stakeholders Rule – Including the Customers in Setting the Requirements for the Processes’ Outputs and the Performers’ Tasks


Capturing the Performance Competence Requirements



This next graphics lays out the enablers that may be part of the Performance Gaps’ causes.


In the CAD Design Meeting

You arbitrarily start with 3 segments – B-M-E – for initial sorting of the chunks of Performance and the chunks of required Awareness/ Knowledge/ Skills Enablers (of the articulated Performance).

CAD DTM 7 Steps

Once the flow of possible learning is seen – the clustering of content (existing and possible future content) and the selection of mode/media is specified – by the Design Team of Master Performers and other SMEs.

This also where any desirable reinforcing content is specified – in case the job won’t reinforce the learning and provide the feedback well enough and timely enough by itself.

3 Segment Path/Menu Example

CAD Path Prod Mgrs

The initial project was done in 1986 and then updated twice over the next 8 years. The path served 1100 to 1500 Product Planners/Managers over that timeframe.

1 Segment Path Example

Lock step. Everyone together.

CAD Path Call Center Sales

The client needed the Path to facilitate two test out/fail out points – and the temporary interruption of the Learning to enable people to go out on the floor and take certain calls during times of extreme overload. It happens.

4 Segment Path/Menu Example 

CAD Path Supervisors

The path led to a Zone Managers Path – and both included a heavy emphasis on Qualifications Tests embedded in key Events on the Path. Also, many Events included structured interviews and structured practice on-the-job to facilitate Social learning.

6 Segment Path/Menu Example 

CAD Path Global Clinical Trials

The audience included a global audience of people in many different countries with different job responsibility variations, dealing with their local requirements (the equivalent of the US’s FDA).

This project followed on a Lean-Six Sigma effort for the global process that the Path/Menu addressed.

As Flexible As Feasible and As Rigid As Required

All Paths/Menus should be as flexible and as rigid as appropriate.



Regarding all of my models, methods, tools and techniques…


… just as I needed to do on almost every project.

Learning Can Only Take You So Far

Generally – more guidance is needed for those new to the Performance – and less for those with much more experience.

astonaut 1

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L&D: Free Book PDF – Performance-based Employee Qualification/ Certification Systems

In 2007 I made four of my books available as free PDFs to encourage myself to update them, which I finally completed in 2011 in my Wallace 6-Pack … with apologies to my friend Bob Mager.

Here is my 2007 book “Performance-based Employee Qualification/ Certification Systems” – as a free PDF:



Written with the late Ray A. Svenson, my business partner 1982-1997. RIP.

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L&D: Free Book PDF – Management Areas of Performance

In 2007 I made four of my books available as free PDFs to encourage myself to update them, which I finally completed in 2011 in my Wallace 6-Pack … with apologies to my friend Bob Mager.

Here is my 2007 book “Management Areas of Performance” – as a free PDF:



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L&D: Rummler 1981 Video

The Late Geary A. Rummler

… at the Motorola Training & Education Center in April 1981.

I was in the audience – visiting for a day one week before my job at MTEC actually started. Because at MTEC they already knew that I was a budding Rummler-ite.

It was why they had hired me.

1981 MTEC G A Rummler Session – handout.

1981 MTEC G A Rummler Session

Rummler-ite in Development

Geary was quite an inspiration to me.

Before working directly with him at Motorola I worked with people who had worked alongside his brother at Blue Cross Blue Shield in Detroit and Geary’s brother in law ran our Video operations – while I with a Radio/TV/Film degree worked in Program Development.

I was the only one in the department who had actually worked at one of the 183 stores that HQ served. So my education and experience took me out of the Video Operations into the prior activities of doing the planning, analysis, design and development – development of everything but the videos.

My Rummler-influenced approach to ISD got me the MTEC job.

At MTEC many of our resources were working on the support of a corporate-wide initiative – Participative Management – that while well intended seemed bogged down in that it was a lot of platitudes that lacked a process for getting to that nirvana (heaven on earth).

Then after additional exposure to the thinking and work of Rummler, and Neil Rackham (SPIN Selling), and everything else going on in the TQM movement of the late 70s and early 80s that was a big deal at an engineering and manufacturing outfit that Motorola was back in the day – I had a set of thoughts that I wrote down in a White Paper.

As often happens that thought … and many other thoughts … were kicked around our corporate HQ department before something eventually came out of it all.

Here in 1982 in Phoenix … working on “The Kit” with my boss and Geary…


My boss…

82-006 Paul MTEC

The Kit was short for the DIY Geary Rummler Consulting Kit – a concept for a technology transfer from the man to many – an idea that spawned from an idea of mine that I documented in a White Paper that I developed after growing a bit frustrated with the status quo in our own organization.

We were not practicing (soon enough and well enough) what we were preaching … or so thought the young punk that I was back in the early 1980s.

We were learning all these great things … but not reflecting them in our current practices – a gripe/ an idea that my boss turned into the Kit concept.

That Kit thing then morphed and morphed.

Here is my White Paper.

MTEC White Paper 1982_Page_01White Paper – Motorola – Wallace – Part Mgmt of the Perf Sys May 1982

That led to what MTEC co-worker (and DINFOS graduate) Alan Ramias describes in his article, next. Note: Alan took all my projects … and my boss … when I left MTEC and continued that Kit concept.

Here is his story about that…

Ramias – Mists of Six Sigma

Thanks Geary! RIP.


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