How Do We Prove the Value of Training to Our Executives?
Where can I find data on reinforcement of training? Our learning and development group wants to prepare a report for our executives. —<i>All Ears, performance development consultant, communications, Dallas</i>
Dear All Ears:
You have made me think about my own three decades of work in this field, particularly in our own niche specialties of engagement and development. I find that reinforcement from the designer of the learning solution is critical. We do this with a variety of "sustainers" that are added to the solution itself. However, it doesn't work if the client is not willing to add some teeth to the process and hold the participants accountable also.
If both of these are done, the chances increase that there will, in fact, be a return on investment in the learning.
It is a shame that human resources/training must do all of this simply to hold participants accountable for putting the training to use. Given all the pressures on learners these days and how full their plates are, it makes the old saying—paraphrasing here—"folks will do what is inspected, not just expected" easier to understand. That still seems to be case in these rushed times.
As to research materials: Calhoun Wick, Roy Pollock and Andrew Jefferson co-authored "The Six Disciplines of Breakthrough Learning: How to Turn Training and Development into Business Results." It lays out (in great detail) a model for all the components of training design, including reinforcement.
SOURCE: Bev Kaye, Career Systems International, Scranton, Pennsylvania
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