Too Much Corporate Training Is Wasted
Done right when you provide learning that sticks, training can be a great investment in career development and performance improvement. In fact, investments made by an organization to make their employees more successful consistently rate in the top ten in terms of employee engagement research. Done wrong however, training can be a missed opportunity and a huge waste of both precious time and money for you and your employees.
Learning that Does Not Stick
Based upon the measurement of over 800 training programs, we know that training, by itself, changes the behavior and the on-the-job performance of only 1-in-5 participants on average. Those are not great odds. The biggest barrier to having learning that sticks? Relevance!
Training that is not highly relevant to the participant, their boss and the company as a whole has the lowest probability of changing on-the-job behavior or performance. While this seems like common sense, how many of your training initiatives have a direct thread to a top strategic priority and the individual, team and company levels? Our clients tell us that less than 20% of their training fits the bill.
Learning that Sticks
We define learning that sticks as training that helps to visibly improve on-the-job behavior and performance in a way that moves a people or business priority forward.
Take a Lesson from Animals
For newborn offspring to survive in the wild, they must learn new behaviors. Certain birds teach a “password” to their chicks in order to call for food. Some European ants practice a way to run together to find food quickly. And lions kill prey for younger offspring and then bring live prey to older offspring to finish the kill.
How much do your leaders create the conditions for their teams to practice and learn how to “survive” and perform?
3 Tips to Create Learning that Sticks
To create corporate learning that sticks:
1. Focus on What Matters Most
Forget the fire hose approach. It may make logistics easier, but it will only overwhelm employees and there will be little on-the-job retention. A little at a time with greater focus and intensity is far more effective.
First, identify the top few skills that matter most to the participants, their boss and the company as a whole. Second, identify the top scenarios in which those skills would make the most difference. And finally, design a learning solution that allows participants to learn what matters most at a pace that works for them.
2. Allow for Practice of the New Skills
The more participants can test their new skills, the more proficient and confident they will become. To become adopted, new skills have to be put into practice on-the-job over a sustained period of time. Practice can be done on an individual basis or group basis, in real circumstances or in simulations. The key takeaway is that changing behavior and performance is a process.While much has been written about the amount of practice required to master a new skill, we find that how you practice is as important as how often you practice. Researchers from Johns Hopkins University found that those who practice slightly modified versions of the new skills learn faster. Similar to the muscle confusion concept for athletes, it is important to keep your brain on its toes.
3. Reinforce the Right Behaviors
Much of learning is learning by doing, reflecting, feedback and failure. Be sure that your training programs have sufficient follow-through and are supported by performance management systems and ongoing coaching. Without consistent exposure, feedback and accountability, new skills tend to become the fad of the month instead of the new muscles required to perform at your peak.
The Bottom Line
Ensure that your investment in training counts. If you focus on what matters most, pace the learning, allow for practice and follow through, you will be part of the elite 20% that has delivered learning that sticks.
To learn more about learning that sticks, download 3 Steps to Building a Smarter Training Initiative – One that Gets Business Results
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I have worked with other training companies and found it to be more of a seller/buyer relationship than one of matching the right expertise to our business issues. That’s what LSA does – ask the hard questions, listen, and understand our business needs. We receive the benefit of their expertise from assistance with personal development plans to enhancing team performance, to looking at enterprise-wide challenges. It’s all about helping our business succeed as we grow. Right now, LSA is providing great ideas, a fresh approach, and valuable guidance as we develop our management team and accelerate our client relationship management results.
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I’ve been associated with LSA for the last 8 years and have found them to be an extremely professional, well managed full service training organization. Since working with LSA, I’ve participated in a number of solutions ranging from Performance Management to Assertiveness Training – I’ve found that the quality of the resources is superior. They are well prepared and have definitely done a considerable amount of pre-work in order to customize our culture and business into the total learning experience – making it most beneficial for our employees.
Human Resource Manager
Understanding and conforming to legal compliance was very important to our company. We turned to LSA Global to provide a quality and cost effective way to ensure that we were AB 1825 compliant. Their interactive eLearning program was top-notch. It allowed our managers to learn at their own pace, and on their own time. The program was tailored to include our logo and our internal harassment policies. It was interactive and met all federal and state legal requirements. I would highly recommend LSA Global to any company looking for an efficient and effective and top quality way to train their managers to be in compliance.
Kelly Warren, SPHR
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Director, HR Business Partner
I’ve partnered with LSA Global at two companies now, and I consider them a valuable and trusted training and consulting resource. They recommended just the right solution to address our management development needs and have wonderful facilitators that match YuMe’s culture and style of our management team. I would highly recommend LSA Global to any company wanting to deliver quality learning solutions with a valuable learning and development partner.
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We recently contacted LSA Global to assist us with a unique training request. We gave LSA a very short deadline and LSA custom designed a training program to meet our exact requirements within the limited time allotted to them. We found their facilitator to be well versed in the subject matter and very credible; the design provided practical and valuable information to our team of managers. I highly recommend LSA Global, particularly in the area of management training.
Julaine K. Souza
Senior Vice President
I had been working with LSA for many years with my prior company. Currently, I’m with a company who hadn’t done much basic management skills training. After identifying and presenting a program recently, our managers are excited and talking in the halls about the great experience. LSA saves us time in delivering the right training for our needs.
VNUS Medical has been very pleased with the effective management development programs that LSA Global has delivered for us over the last four years. The programs have been universally facilitated by experienced and best in class instructors. The knowledge gained by our management team has been put into practice very quickly. VNUS is very happy to be working in partnership with LSA because they consistently deliver excellent programs that receive exceptional feedback from our management team.
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