Performance Support Categories

And They Are Typically Building Blocks – IMO

Or should be building blocks.

In other words, typically one would do #1, then #2, etc.

PS Categories

As someone in the Learning biz – since 1979 – I’ve always seen Training as a subset of Performance Support.

Not the other way around.

And I never believed that Performance Support was the responsibility of the Training/ Learning/ Knowledge Management functions within an Enterprise. It is the responsibility of the management of the target process or function. They cannot outsource something so critical to folks whom might only have a surface understanding of the Performance Requirements and Processes. Really.

And that also has BIG implications for their role in how they provision Training/ Learning/ Knowledge Management stuff.

But I digress.

Here’s some thoughts about Performance Support – including … it’s not always about fancy tools. These can be post-it-notes, on-paper, on-paper and laminated, on-paper and laminated in binders … or audio podcasts, video podcasts, on mobile apps, and/or on other network accessible tools and systems.

As always, it depends.

1- Enable Push/Pull Performance Support Data

The Performer … not necessarily a Learner … for then it would be too much about us, Learning organization folks, Training organization folks, Knowledge Management organization folks … and that Performer may need access to

  • Historical/Static Data
  • Current/Dynamic Data

Historical/Static Data – such as prior order history.

Current/Dynamic Data – such as today’s prices. Or this moment’s prices.

2- Demonstrate the Performance Required and Desired

For people from the Show Me state and elsewhere – simply showing the Performer what they are to do – may be sufficient.

That can include a deliberate demonstration, a casual observance, or simply leaving it to them to figure it out in their own way … and thereby demonstrate some other things/capabilities in that informal/sink-or-swim process.

3- Explain the Performance Required and Desired

For people from the Show Me state and elsewhere – simply showing the Performer what they are to do – may NOT be sufficient. They may need an explanation on some or all of what they are being shown.

Simply add that in PUSH style – or have it at-the-ready for PULL style.

4- Provide Detailed Step-By-Step Guidance and Tools

This points the Performer with a detailed (… hit enter and then…) set of task guidance … for both overt/behavioral tasks … and for covert/cognitive tasks.

Overt/behavioral tasks … such as: open the cash register drawer by hitting the open button on the bottom right.

Covert/cognitive tasks … such as … consider and assess the levels of negative risks and their likelihood before completing this next step, for the following 3 items….

5- Provide Access to Non-People Resources

This points the Performer to the needed Non-People Resources, for more depth than would normally be available via #1.

Here’s the online and/or physical book and reference library of the site.

Here is the Print Department’s Submission URL.

6- Provide Access to People Resources

This points the Performer to the needed People Resources, help desks, experts-on-the-road, etc., via a menu or troubleshooting guide.

They’ll get back to you you when they can because this is not an emergency … which the next category is intended to handle…

7- Provide Immediate Access to Help

This escalates the access of the Performer to the needed human expert/authority resources – via one-step or two steps – but in an accelerated, no-kidding-hair-on-fire, emergency response-like manner.

PDQ as they said back in the day.

This might to be to an emergency-like help desk, available 24/7/366.

Or to that expert/authority’s mobile phone.

In cases like this … the phone shouldn’t ring more than twice before being answered.

Convert that concept to the mechanics for a text, message, or screen function, etc., as needed in your Performance Context.


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Some Final Thoughts

Focus on the Performance – and Enable That.

That is all.

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