I’m happy to say I’ve been nice and busy working in-house with some of my great clients over the last weeks. While doing this one of my pet topics has come up again for discussion – how companies are doing their induction training and what’s the best way.
What I find is there is not a lot of thought put into the critical aspects of the task that really determines what is the best method to train. For example, how often the task is done or how difficult the task is or how important the task is.
When designing an on-job training process, with the intent to ensure all team members have the skills and knowledge to perform their jobs you can’t just get people in a room and just tell them what they need to do. Nor can you train them once in activities that are very important and high frequency, they must be able to do those activities unassisted 100% correctly so they will need repeated practice to reach that level of mastery. We call this training behavioural training and ‘repetition is key.’
Whereas activities or tasks that happen infrequently require a different approach to training. Training someone to do these tasks and getting them to practice it over and over (repetition) in a training course is probably a waste of time, as they may hardly ever or never need to use it. Simply because of the infrequency, the training you have provided, and their recall of the training isn’t something you can rely upon.
Let’s set them up to succeed not fail
I recommend implementing a system called criterion reference instruction, which includes a 4-step process.
Step One – Task analysis or goal analysis—Identify what needs to be learned.
a) What is the frequency of this activity/ process? High / Medium / Low
b) How important is the activity/ process? High / Medium / Low
c) How difficult is the activity/ process? Hard/ Medium / Easy
Example I use to teach retail teams how to handle an armed robbery.
Frequency = low or never!!!
Importance = high
Difficulty = to complete the tasks was medium due to the stress.
How do you train this? No point just doing a course because you will forget it, because the frequency/ chance it might occur is so low or not at all, hopefully!!
We taught 5 things which everyone had to know 100% correctly from memory, this was criteria.
1. Turn sideways in front of the robber (reduce target)
2. They need do exactly what they are told, when giving money from till ensure you take out everything including the note that sets of the silent alarm.
3. They check height when Robber leaves (measure is on the door) and
4. They must lock door behind them.
5. Then they grab armed robbery procedure and follow the rest of the actions.
At any random time, we would ask a team member ’What are the five things you must do if an arm robbery occurs’, they must answer 100% correctly within in 1 minute. This includes finding the job aid.
Step Two – Performance objectives—Specify the outcomes and how they will be evaluated
Step Three – Criterion-referenced testing—Determine the knowledge or skills needed to accomplish the stated outcome goals, and decide how to evaluate that they have been learned
Step Four – Development—Create learning modules based on the objectives
The principles of CRI are:
- Design instructional objectives that are directly tied to skills and knowledge learners need to perform their jobs; ensure that each objective is verifiable using defined criteria.
- Learner’s study and practice only skills that they have not yet mastered. They are required to achieve only the level of mastery needed for job performance.
- Learners have opportunities to practice each objective; they are given feedback on their performance.
- Learners are offered repeated practice, such as refresher courses, so they can maintain their level of proficiency. This is especially important for difficult or frequently needed skills.
- Learners choose the sequence and pace of their learning, while following any constraints imposed by prerequisite knowledge or skill requirements.
Below I have included a model which also makes you think how you train someone, for example if people just read information, they are only going to remember 10% of what they read, if you tell them it goes to 20%, if they watch a video it jumps to 50% but getting people to tell you jumps to 70% and if they have to say and do it then a massive 90%. This is reinforced by the old saying apparently from Confucius:
I hear and I forget
I see and I remember
I do and I understand
One of the things I do with clients is help them redesign their training, so it maximizes the learning.
I have four key principles:
You learn best when you do it
You learn best when you have some fun
You learn best when you can apply and use your own knowledge and
Learning has not taken place until behavior has changed back on the job.
My workshops are very interactive, utilising behaviour modelling-based training. Extensive research indicates that this technique is most effective at developing coaching skills and ensuring their transfer to the job. It has demonstrated positive results in all four levels of training evaluation:
- participant reaction
- application to the job
- organisational performance change
“Repetition is the secret to skill”
The approach I take is experiential with a mix of presentations, fun games containing serious purposes plus skill practice.
“Good leadership consists of showing average people how to do the work of superior people”
John D Rockefeller
f you would like to have a chat with me about ‘Training that changes behaviour back on the job’ contact me I look forward to hearing from you