Wednesday, January 8, 2014

The Ending... A Very Good Place to Start!

When creating a training program for employees, historically we’ve followed Maria von Trapp’s advice in the Sound of Music… “Let’s start from the very beginning, a very good place to start.”

I’m going to suggest that the ending is where you want to start when you develop or revise any of your current training programs. An illustration may make the point. Below is an image of something I call a “value chain”, which instinctively you are going to read from left to right.


For a training program, the content and curriculum represent the process on the far left, the training itself is the activity, the objectives are the desired performance, and the business results are just that.

We always seem to know what we want to put into the curriculum, so we naturally start at the left. But this is where most training programs actually fall apart. I say it is better to start with the end game in mind, and work backwards toward the curriculum. So even though we read the value chain from left-to-right, we actually construct it from right-to-left.

This concept applies to any business process, of course. Focus on the ultimate goal, much like a bowler focuses on the pins. Keeping the endgame in mind is a great way to ensure your training initiatives start off on the right foot!

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