Where Is The Focus of Your Learning Function? And How Do You Measure Learning?

If you are in an Enterprise Learning Context – your focus should be on improving (or sustaining) Performance levels by developing the awareness, knowledge and skills of the Learners/Performers. There are rare times when that is not the case/need – but those are rare.

Level 4/5 – The Results/ROI

…is a client decision. Unless the Learning function is calling the shots as to what Learning Solutions (products/services) to bring to market. If the clients abdicated those decisions to the Learning function – well, bad on them. They live with the consequences of those decisions.  Unless the Enterprise has unlimited resources to just toss around at anything that comes up – more care needs to be given as “what to target” in the first place.

Those are business decisions, not Training/Learning/Knowledge Management/Instructional decisions. Asking the Learning function to make those decisions is not Good Stewardship. Partnering/collaborating to target resource investments is.


Level 3 – Transfer to the Performance Context

…is impacted by the authenticity of the content’s context. Teaching someone Active Listening using examples, demonstrations and application exercises (for practice and timely constructive and corrective feedback) for someone else’s job – is only effective for 15% of the population (according to Richard E. Clark, PhD and APA Fellow).

So if the content is not “authentic enough” it is a waste for 85% of the learners/performers.  And that is not Good Stewardship.

How to tell whether your Content’s Context is “authentic enough?” Test it out and measure the results.

Level 2 – Mastery of the Learning Objectives

… should be on learning objectives that were not simply brainstormed – but were systematically derived from complete, accurate and appropriate Performance Objectives. Also important for Level 3.

Level 1 – Reaction

… is important if everything else (levels 2-3-4/5 approached properly) would seem to be in order – but somehow the Learning isn’t working in terms of Levels 2-3-4/5.

But don’t start there – at Level 1. It can be very misleading. See Roger Chevalier’s Century 21 story about that – here.


And Another Thing

… was what to be learned potentially packaged in a simple Job Aid?

Online? Or on Paper?

Is guidance called for rather than development of recall ability?

Is the data and/or information so fluid that it’s best to provide access to others (use of Social Media/Collaborative Tools/Systems?) or to Data Systems (the Library, Databases, etc.)?


Let’s Not Lose Sight

… of the proper role of Learning in Enterprise Performance. Deming claimed that about 94% of quality issues were due to the system – and not the worker.

We do our clients and other stakeholders a big disservice when we address their needs with the wrong approach. Yes, they may have come to you for Training?Learning – but that doesn’t mean we should blindly go forth and give them what they think they need. We need to discover along with them what they really need.

That’s good stewardship.

Resources From Me

… and …

# # #

One comment on “Where Is The Focus of Your Learning Function? And How Do You Measure Learning?

  1. Pingback: Soft Skills or Hard Skills? – HPT Treasures – for Evidence Based Performance Improvement

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.