How people learn and how they are taught are often not in sync. This shows up as inconsistencies in execution, untapped market potential, and the need to get “back to basics.” Simply put, if staff consistently did what they are supposed to do in the manner in which they are supposed to do it, execution would improve and results would grow exponentially.
Making matters worse, is the amount of content that is delivered in a relatively short period of time. A daylong or weeklong seminar is the equivalent of unscrewing the top of someone’s head, cramming it full of details, and then reinstalling their skullcap. Is it any wonder that people retain so little and use even less on the job?
Education, done well and done right, is not training. Delivered correctly, it includes the following:
Drip the learning to support retention.
Instead of requiring people to gorge themselves on a buffet of knowledge, give them meal-sized portions of content. Learning Limits, how much content people can digest in one sitting, requires this form or portion control to manage the delivery of ideas, strategies, and best practices.
Countermeasures for the human tendency of making the simple, complex.
Humans are masterful at making things much more complicated than they need to be. To counter this, quality education must promote simplicity, a systematic approach, and methods that are sustainable. These countermeasures mitigate or eliminate our innate foibles, especially when it comes to making mountains out of molehills.
Opportunities to apply what’s been learned.
Practice is said to make perfect. While it’s rare that people achieve anything near sustained perfection at anything, we need more opportunities to try out new skills and behaviors. It’s through repetition that we gain mastery, and trying to master any approach or technique only in conversations and meetings with prospects, clients, and candidates often leads to poor or even disastrous results.
Radical Accountability to counter the momentum of the status quo.
Momentum keeps an object going in the same direction. Since the pull of the status quo is so strong, it takes something even stronger, Radical Accountability, to break the momentum and create a sustainable shift in the opposite direction.
By stopping traditional training and starting real education, you and your organization can create real learning opportunities that benefit all parties, with no more exploding heads.
This Week’s Radical Accountability Activating Action: Begin to employ the four interventions to shift from a training culture to a sustainable learning environment.
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