Could You Be Replaced By An App? – Part 4
Kirkpatrick Quick Tip Vol. 2 #23
In the last quick tip we talked about performing a good needs analysis before diving in and developing training content. In this quick tip we discuss the importance of creating a plan for what will happen not just during training, but before and after it as well.
The phrase “training needs analysis” is dangerous, because it sets the expectation that the intervention will always be training. We prefer to say needs analysis, and use it in the context of a broader initiative or solution.
Imagine if a civil engineer always prescribed the bridge as the best way to get from one point to another, and didn’t consider a tunnel or an alternate route. There could be a great waste of resources because a better solution was not considered.
Imagine further if the civil engineer built a bridge and didn’t put up any signage letting drivers know that there was a bridge down the road, or where it would lead. There would be a lot of confusion.
Training professionals need to create a complete execution plan for initiatives, much the same as civil engineers do for construction projects. After the needs analysis is complete, consider the best overall approach to solve the problem. Consider not just what training might be required (if any), but the roles of training participants, their supervisors and managers, and the training department, during the time before, during and after the intervention.
Agree on Level 3 critical behaviors for the training graduates and the required drivers that will support them. Critical behaviors are the few, specific actions, which if performed consistently on the job, will have the biggest impact on the desired results. Required drivers are processes and systems that monitor, reinforce, encourage and reward performance of critical behaviors on the job.
A Level 3 plan is often missing from plans submitted to us to review, and Level 3 cannot be skipped. The degree to which required drivers are built into the plan and later executed directly impacts the degree to which the initiative will be successful.
Required drivers include things like observing training graduate performance on the job, integrating rewards and recognitions with execution of critical behaviors, coaching, mentoring, job aids, refresher training, reminders and tracking systems. The more important the initiative, the greater the number of require drivers that should be planned.
The key to success with required drivers is working directly with the managers and supervisors during the planning stage to get their ideas as to what drivers will work best, and that they will support. You will need their active participation for a large initiative to be successful.
Agreeing up front on these roles and responsibilities will help to ensure that your training produces the on-the-job performance that is expected.
In next week’s quick tip we will discuss how to build an explanation of the on-the-job support package into the training program itself, so participants know what assistance awaits them on the other side of the bridge.