Segueing from Training to Performance Improvement

Your goal in the training/learning/knowledge management business is not to build/acquire and then deploy content.

It is to improve targeted performance for projected, targeted ROI and Value Add.

The Building Blocks of Perf Competence

That should be your Value Proposition, and your Mission, and how you are Measured: ROI and Value Add.

But we all already know that knowledge/skill deficits are seldom the singular issue in a performance situation. There are other variables that might require attention.

When we are able to better affect those non-K/S issues, we will have moved from training only, to performance improvement. Segueing from Training to Performance Improvement requires…

  • 1st- being very effective in producing performance-oriented T&D in terms of reducing life cycle costs and increasing returns…Total ROI. If you don’t have credibility here yet, don’t move on to #2.
  • 2nd– being aligned with the enterprise leadership, and being used in the support of critical enterprise challenges, where there is significant return-on-investment, and value add, and/or for high-penalty risk issues are at stake. You need to do well in these highly visible arenas with communications and training & development. Here’s where being excellent at #1 pays off and enables you to take that final step to #3!
  • 3rd– being able to easily add to your analysis approach methods/tools to determine both “the requirements” and the “actuals/gaps” regarding all other process/human performance variables. Conduct your performance consulting within instructional consulting efforts, all the while delivering excellence in response to instructional needs in critical high-stakes areas. Later, change the name of your department, after you’ve earned it.

It’s not a quantum leap from here to there that will make you successful in the transition, but planned, incremental steps that build on each other. You have to walk before you run.

A segue: To move smoothly and unhesitatingly from one state to another– American Heritage dictionary.

Stage right…our methodology-sets of PACT and EPPI are to assist you in your epic journey…

A Bit More…
1– our approach to ISD is lean, accelerated, effective, and reproducible. It builds a library of instructional objects to increase appropriate re-use and reduce life cycle costs for the entire inventory of T&D products and modules/objects. Our PACT Processes for T&D is our approach to lean-ISD, as documented in my book: lean-ISD. PACT designs at three levels, at the systems level for a job/process; at the product level for a course/workshop/web module; and at the sub-assembly level for instructional activities/objects. ISD is more than ADDIE.

2– Tight alignment with the leaders and other key stakeholders of your enterprise in a more formal than not Governance & Advisory structure is critical. Consistently having T&D efforts targeted and successful in meaningful process improvement for significant ROI, is the only way to stave off a force-reduction in the T&D ranks when business conditions are sour. If you don’t do this alignment well, nothing else can save you come that eventual judgment day. See 12 O’clock in our T&D Systems View book and model-set for more on this topic.

3– To really achieve success in your planned migration from training only to performance-improvement, you will need to offer more than T&D deliverables. You will need to offer analysis-based insights on the “non-K/S variables” in the systemic view – of their relationships to problems’ root causes. And you must work with others to produce “improvement deliverables” for those non-K/S process variables. More than Instruction. That’s where our EPPI and PACT models and methods merge.


Our intent was that after mastering our PACT methods, while simultaneously getting the rest of your house in order using the T&D Systems View and getting better aligned, the EPPI methods “bolt” nicely onto the PACT Analysis methods for your segue. For more on PACT and EPPI see the Services and Resources tabs at my web site:

Remember the Pareto Principle? The 80/20 rule? That only 20% of the variables will address 80% of your problem/opportunity. If you work with your customers and engage them in the right way, your partnership will result in mutual “discovery” of the root causes for potential measured results that add value, and mutual agreement on “the 20% fixes” required to maximize ROI.

It may be why 80% of what people learn regarding their jobs was learned Informally. Strategic financial bets were made on the targeted few. Appropriately.

If you’ve bought into the “Collaborative Performance Support” tools (don’t call them Social Networks except as by way of example) because it better enables critical performers in critical process performance…then that’s what makes the ROI business case. Incremental if not wholesale use beyond that “can be” icing on the cake. Or can be performance degrading. Be careful!

5 past Pursuing Performance newsletters, available on my web site, from Fall 2003 – Fall 2004 present some additional details on my approach to this Segue from Training to Performance.


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