Responding to a Request for Training/ Instruction/ Learning/ Performance Support…

My Gut Reaction

You may call it Intuition…

If the Request is to address the needs of New Hires – I relax. That is to be expected.

If the Request is to address Performance Improvement – I don’t relax. That too is expected.

But I know (or feel strongly) that the root issue is probably something else.

But Sometimes Instruction Is the Best Temporary Work-Around

Not that addressing an issue with Training or Learning (etc.) is the best solution – from a fix it forever viewpoint – but it might be from an ROI view point. The view point of good stewards of shareholder equity.

A Not-So Fictitious Case In Point

Let’s say that the top executives know that the mid-term plans call for spinning off (selling) an entire Division – and it’s that Division where the current Problem is. And to sell it off at a higher rather than lower price will require some short term fixes to some Productivity numbers that “could be better.”

And that some Master Performers (my term for those who are also known as Exemplars, Stars, etc., etc.) are hitting their numbers – as they have figured out how to avoid the Productivity Traps that others (the non-Master Performers) are obviously falling prey to.

I’ve seen this more times than I can count – when I facilitate groups of Master Performers in my Analysis methods.

The Master Performers often know what they are doing differently than others – but as no one has asked them (or listened to them in the past) so they keep on chugglin’ (a reference to a Creedence Clearwater Revival song from my youth).

So we go ahead – suspicious that Learning is the answer – but open to other possibilities – and we conduct the analysis and paint the word picture of ideal performance and the gaps (side-by-side) using the Performance Model format.

And then we systematically derive the enabling Knowledge/Skills for that ideal Performance, using all or some appropriate sub-set of my 17 K/S Categories.

And then we design the system of Instruction – using any appropriate blend of media/mode, formal or informal, more-Social (meet in CoP or Job Title Forums to share stories of success and failures), or less-Social (read a book/watch a video), and reinforce via appropriate strategies with Spaced Learning (more if the Performance is required in a random manner – less if the Performers/Learners will start doing this every day all day long), etc.

Did I mention that I do the Analysis and Design using a Group Process? The same approach that we published in 1984 in TRAINING Magazine? Read that – the published or the original version…

CAD – Training Mag – 1984 – 6 page PDF – the first publication about Curriculum Architecture Design via a Group Process – published in Training Magazine in September 1984. Original manuscript (30 pages) – How to Build a Training Structure That Won’t Keep Burning Down.

These and other Resources are in my large library of Resources under the Resources Tab – here at

A Funny Thing Occasionally Happens

And it happens in the PST GRM – the Project Steering Team Gate Review Meetings – at the end of the Analysis Phase.

For either my CAD or MCD efforts. See the upside-down Traffic Lights in the following graphic.

The funny thing is – is that the PST see the analysis data – and the causes for the gaps – and decides that Training/ Learning/ Instruction isn’t the ideal way to go.

Unless they are looking for a quick fix and/or the ROI just isn’t there (sufficient) for Re-Engineering the Process or addressing the Environmental supports that may be lacking.

And that seems much more feasible – and OK – if they see that some of the Learners/Performers are meeting the numbers. And that getting what’s in the heads and abilities of all of the others what the Master Performers have – just might do it.

And That’s What It’s All About.

Performance – not Learning.

Even for a Learning Organization.

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