Training and Development

Training and Development

News, articles and tips on how to design, develop and deliver successful learning programs using best-practice principles and methods.

  • 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 »

  • Managing Medium to Large Training Projects

    Managing Medium to Large Training Projects

    Large training projects are embedded within multifaceted change initiatives and so require more complex project management. Projects and Complex Change Some training programs impact a limited number of people and systems within an organization. Developing and delivering these kinds of programs is best treated as a small training project with a simple governance structure, streamlined processes and minimal documentation requirements. On the other hand, some training programs play a critical role in moving the organization forward. These kinds of programs are embedded within a more complex change or improvement initiative. These larger initiatives typically aim to bring about change to…Read More »

  • Managing Small Training Projects

    Managing Small Training Projects

    Smart training project managers adapt their project management systems, processes and tools to suit the size of the project. Applying Project Management Methods Organizations reap significant benefits when they treat the design and rollout of important training programs in a disciplined way. Whether the organization is designing and delivering a leadership development program or sourcing a vendor to deliver a course on innovation and creativity, there are a variety of interrelated tasks that need to be undertaken by key people for the program to be a success. It pays to treat the training initiative as a project, using established project…Read More »

  • Evaluating Training Effectiveness

    Evaluating Training Effectiveness

    How do you know when your training program has created a real impact for your people and your business? Why Measure Training Effectiveness? Measuring the effectiveness of training programs consumes valuable time and resources. As we know all too well, these things are in short supply in organizations today. Why should we bother? Many training programs fail to deliver the expected organizational benefits. Having a well-structured measuring system in place can help you determine where the problem lies. On a positive note, being able to demonstrate a real and significant benefit to your organization from the training you provide can…Read More »

  • Diagnosing Poor Work Performance

    Diagnosing Poor Work Performance

    There are many causes of poor employee performance. Improper diagnosis without the right tool wastes a lot of time and resources. Employee Performance Diagnostic Tool One of the most difficult jobs for a manager is dealing with poor employee performance. For some managers, this is the most hated aspect of their job. However, wherever poor work performance is not properly diagnosed and confronted, the costs are great in lost productivity, rising customer complaints and lost profits. The simple employee performance diagnostic tool below can assist managers in better uncovering the causes of poor performance and managing employee performance issues. The…Read More »

  • Training for Change

    Training for Change

    A critical part of any successful change program is skilling up people in a variety of roles. Change Program Training Plan Successful organizational change depends upon improving people’s capabilities. This includes skilling up the people working in the new environment – employees, customers and suppliers. Often forgotten about are the skill requirements of the people involved in bringing about the new way of working – the change drivers, implementers and enablers. Have you included all players in your training plan? How comprehensive is your training plan? Is it adequately resourced? Does it address each of the five key requirements for…Read More »

  • Training Needs Analysis

    Training Needs Analysis

    Creating effective training programs begins with completing a reliable and accurate Training Needs Analysis. Training Needs Analysis Purpose A Training Needs Analysis (TNA) is used to assess an organization’s training needs. The root of the TNA is the gap analysis. This is an assessment of the gap between the knowledge, skills and attitudes that the people in the organization currently possess and the knowledge, skills and attitudes that they require to meet the organization’s objectives. The training needs assessment is best conducted up front, before training solutions are budgeted, designed and delivered. The output of the needs analysis will be…Read More »