Leslie Allan’s blog featuring news, articles and tips on all aspects of improving organizational performance through effective leadership, driving change and enhancing employee capabilities.

  • Costs of Poor Workplace Communication

    Costs of Poor Workplace Communication

    Poor communication in the workplace leaves in its wake low motivation, poor productivity and high employment costs. Why Communication Practices Are Important Good communication practices are at the heart of every successful business. Communication serves two essential functions in every organization. It disseminates the information needed by employees to get things done and builds relationships of trust and commitment. Without it, employees end up working in silos with no clear direction, vague goals and little opportunity for improvement. Successful projects and change programs are a rarity and real leadership is scarce. Staff morale plummets when communication is ambiguous, unfocused, lacking…Read More »

  • Creating a Training Program Communication Plan

    Creating a Training Program Communication Plan

    Constructing a program communication plan with your key stakeholders keeps everyone engaged with the future success. Why a Communication Plan? Employee engagement and satisfaction surveys consistently report poor communications as a leading cause of employee disenchantment. The lack of quality communication is also a major reason for project failure. If your training program is a key component of an organizational change or improvement initiative, getting the communications right will save you a lot of heartache further down the track. A large program will involve multiple stakeholders over a considerable period of time. People who need to be involved may span…Read More »

  • Transfer of Training – The PRACTICE Approach™

    Transfer of Training – The PRACTICE Approach™

    Getting learners to apply their learning in their workplaces is the biggest challenge facing trainers. The Problem of Training Transfer “Transfer of training”, as it relates to workplace training, refers to the use put by training participants of the skills and knowledge they learned to their actual work practices. (Note that it is sometimes referred to as “transfer of learning”.) Why is this considered so important for managers and training professionals? Consider the following two workplace training scenarios. John, the Executive Director, caught a number of employees smoking in the lunchroom in spite of the company’s no-smoking policy. He instructed…Read More »

  • Managing Training Initiatives as a Project

    Managing Training Initiatives as a Project

    Improve the chances of the success of your next training program design and rollout by managing it as a project. Coordinating Program Activities Training a group of employees for a specific purpose consumes considerable amounts of the organization’s resources. Time and money is spent determining the need, designing the program (or choosing a training vendor) and purchasing materials. Managers spend time organizing schedules and training participants take time out to attend the training. It’s in everyone’s interests that the organization’s resources are not spent in vain. Savvy managers and trainers realize that successful training programs involve much more than participants…Read More »

  • Change Program Goal Setting

    Change Program Goal Setting

    Many change initiatives fail for want of a clear and unambiguous set of objectives. Why Program Objectives Are Important Your desire to move your organization towards a new way of working will remain just a wish unless you set specific change program objectives and create a change management plan for achieving those objectives. Working with your key stakeholders to flesh out unambiguous and measurable objectives will set your program off on the right track. How can goal setting help? To begin with, the two-way dialogue involved in setting goals helps to get all stakeholders on the same page, uncovering hidden…Read More »

  • Change Program Roles

    Change Program Roles

    Assigning roles and responsibilities is a key step to energizing your people for action in achieving your change program goals. Types of Change Program Roles Your change program, no matter how meticulous the planning, will not bring itself to life. People are needed to complete the necessary actions and to hurdle all of the barriers put before it. You will need to identify and communicate the various change management responsibilities of all the people required to see your change program through. The roles you will actually need will depend on a number of variables. However, generally speaking, a change program…Read More »

  • Writing Learning Objectives

    Writing Learning Objectives

    Improve the effectiveness of your training programs by writing clear learning objectives. Why Write Learning Objectives? Why go to the bother of writing learning objectives for your training program? I see many programs that simply wear participants out by being “nine miles long and one inch thick” with little opportunity to engage learners and practice skills and in the end serving no useful purpose for the organization paying for the program. These programs have a heavy emphasis on what needs to be “taught” with little regard to what participants will need to be able to do when they get back…Read More »

  • Setting SMART Objectives

    Setting SMART Objectives

    Get your learning and change programs off to the best start by defining and agreeing SMART objectives with stakeholders. Define SMART Objectives Whether your organization is about to embark on a major learning initiative or a change program, well designed and effective projects begin with clearly stated business goals. As a program leader, you will need to meet with the key stakeholders to thrash out the desired objectives of your training or change program. Target as your primary meeting outcome a clear definition of what it is your organization wants to achieve with the help of the learning or change…Read More »

  • Changing Learner Behavior

    Changing Learner Behavior

    Design your training programs in a way that guarantees learners will behave differently back on the job. Learner Behavior On-The-Job Many trainers focus on what their program participants need to know. Outstanding trainers think deeply about how their training participants will translate knowledge into action on the job. Without changing on-the-job behavior, training programs are simply glorified amusement sessions or, even worse, boredom enhancers. Effective training begins with proper design. You have analyzed your organization’s training needs and are now ready to write the program participants’ learning outcomes. It is at this point that it helps to clarify exactly what…Read More »

  • Performance Objectives in Instructional Design

    Performance Objectives in Instructional Design

    Using performance-based objectives in your training program design ensures a firm link with workplace performance. Why Performance Objectives? A critically important task in instructional design is writing learning outcomes in a way that makes clear the required performance of the learner following the training. Focusing on performance objectives directly ties the learning to the actual on-the-job behavior necessary for achieving the organization’s goals. Just as importantly, performance-based objectives clarify for the learner where they need to concentrate their learning efforts and makes it easy for assessors to test learners on what is really important. Your first step is to identify…Read More »