L&D: 10 Steps to L&D Content Development for Performance Impact

Performance Impact – That’s What It’s All About

In my view anyway.

Here are 10 Steps adapted from my ISD methods…


These could all be accomplished in one meeting – depending. More likely in 3 meetings. Sometimes more. It depends on the nature and length of the content, the accessibility of others besides the Analysis/Design/Development Team of Master Performers. Etc.

I should all start with a sanctioned plan and designated Master Performers – whose say so – should be acceptable to all other stakeholders. To avoid ReWork due to wrong focus, missing content, etc.


Step 1-

I use a Performance Model template to capture the data – and that typically follows identifying the Areas of Performance. But in this example let’s pretend that it’s only one Output/Task Cluster we are targeting to address. One Output with multiple Measures and a handful of Tasks – each with their own Measures.

Perhaps the Performance is done solo – Lone Ranger style – or by others outside our Target Audience.


Step 2-

Once we know the tasks and output – we can derive the enabling K/S a Performer needs to have in order to perform. I use 17 categories of enabling K/Ss.


Step 3-

Once we know the enablers and the terminal performance we can create the Learning Objectives – and simply derive them from both sets of Analysis data.


Step 4-

The Performance Model of Tasks and Outputs is the source for authentic APPOs – Application Exercises.

If feasible … you can use Real Work, last week’s Real Work (already done), or a simulation of Real Work as the Exercise – which of course is also a Test.

If there are multiple opportunities to practice the final one could be the test. Beats a Written Test to test only for Knowledge most of the time.

But sometimes a written test of Knowledge is appropriate. The Master Performers will guide you/tell you what’s appropriate.


Step 5-

Sometimes, once you understand the APPO – you can determine whether or not a DEMO would help the learner prepare for the APPO. Not always necessary.


Step 6-

Once you understand the APPO and DEMO you can take all of the enabling K/S data and sort and sequence and group them into INFOs.


Step 7-

Now you can develop the Content – the INFOs and DEMOs and APPOs.

This step might require additional people beyond your Team of Master Performers. But maybe not. Maybe they can take this on.

Slide 7a

Step 8-

This step will require additional people beyond your Team of Master Performers. Maybe they’re just down the hall – and can be tapped to address this step.


Step 9-

This is usually more formal – but again, perhaps they’re just down the hall and they can be engaged to participate in this test.

It will require additional Master Performers to check the accuracy, completeness and appropriateness of the Content – AND – Target Audience members so that Learning can be measured, before and after or just after,


Step 10-

Feedback from Verbal Debriefings and/or Written Evaluations will be needed as input to this step. Then you “park” your final materials per your standard approach/procedures.


The 10 Steps

In summary … drum roll …


Part of the PACT Processes for T&D/ Learning/ Knowledge Management

Whether you are targeting some Micro Learning based on the Top-Down approach of Curriculum Architecture Design (to create Paths of modular content) or doing a worthy one-off – these 10 steps can guide you.



For more on the original methods that these 10 Steps were adapted from, see these Resources,


  • For Sale: Books – 13 books – some available as hardbound, and others as paperbacks and Kindles.

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