They Are Engineered To Instruct
They are not like other reference materials or sources – that might “just happen to be of some help” in performance.
These types of Instruction are found in the “70” – of the 70-20-10 Reference Model – that I’ve flipped to be the: Most 10 Before Most 20 Before Most 70 model – where I would generally place them in the 10. Most of them anyway – as they are Formal – that might be used Informally.
And they are in the “Experience” segment of Ryan Tracey’s 3E Model.
And these types of Instruction are also known as QRGs – Quick Reference Guides – in many organizations.
Sometimes a Job Aid can stand on its own. And other times they cannot.
And if the Performance is High Stakes – with High Risks and/or High Rewards – then any Performance Support would likely not be allowed to stand on its own – even if testing showed that for many, or most, that it would be quite sufficient.
Because of the High Stakes. Because of the Risks and Rewards – two sides of the same coin, as they say.
1st – 2nd – 3rd
In 1979 I was taught that after Analysis – and even during Analysis – to look for Performance that could be supported with a standalone Job Aid 1st; a Job Aid embedded in T&D 2nd; and where the performer would need to memorize or have a high level of skill on demand – where there’s simply no time for using a Job Aid 3rd.
That 3rd route was where the Instruction – remember that term before T&D and before Learning displaced each other? – would likely need a slew of Practice with Feedback. Either in recall capability. And or skill/performance demonstration capability. On demand.
That Practice with Feedback – to reinforce and/or correct – before the next Practice with Feedback go-round – and the next – could occur in Group-Paced T&D. Or in Self-Paced T&D. Or in Coached T&D. Objectives depending.
And a 4th route – was to just leave it alone. Let it go. Don’t address it. Because the percieved ROI wasn’t worth it – and there were bigger ROI Fish to Fry – as the saying goes.
Just because an ID can uncover a real Learning Need – does not in and of itself warrant meeting that need.
The 4th route led to what I called Un-Structured OJT – going back to 1982 – when I needed a label for the gap content, the potential content, that was not prioritized for resourcing by my Project Steering Teams in my Curriculum Architecture Design projects to create performance-based T&D Paths. That 4th route is now known as Informal Learning.
Today we call this form of Instruction – Performance Support – which came about as a label in the 1990s. Earlier we called it Job Aids – going back to the 1970s. And even before that it was called Guidance – in the 1960s.
Same Diff as we also used to say back in the 1960s.
First Protect and Then Improve the Enterprise
And “do no harm” while doing either.
And go for worthy performance with an ROI – and not the low hanging fruit of little consequence – even with their mass audiences. Address the worthy Critical Business Issues of your leadership. Get aligned to them and that.
Good stewards of Shareholder Equity don’t squander resources on the inconsequential needs within their Enterprises. They just don’t. Or – not for long.
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