The 5 step filter: streamlining learning strategies for optimal impact

When it comes to using digital learning our experience has confirmed the findings of modern research indicating the key to achieving the best training and engagement results in the modern age is rooted in SIMPLICITY & EFFICIENCY. We have outlined 5 steps that will help you streamline your learning and development strategies to ensure value-adding impact.

Step 1: Define the problem and behaviour change clearly

Thinking deeply about the actual underlying problem that needs to be addressed and the behavioral change required becomes an essential exercise.

The challenge is turning vague “they should know this” training requests into efforts that solve real, measurable and clearly defined performance problems that have an impact on the organisation's bottom line. In order to do this, solutions should be targeted to specific groups in specific situations and provided when they’re most needed. Remember you want to address the simplest form of what the problem is, what learners need to do differently on the job, and why. It also involves looking at what the obstacles are for the specific behavioral changes. Asking, “What do they need to do and why aren’t they doing it?”

"The human brain is drawn towards clarity & away from confusion" - Donald Miller

STEP 2: Set a goal and use measurable metrics 

The next step is identifying a business goal that can be used to measure the success of training efforts.

If it isn't being measured how would you know if it is working?

We believe that every training effort or problem has some form of measurable metric that can be used to assess the success of the learning.

For example: a measure we already use will increase / decrease number % by date as people in a specific group do something differently.

Whether it is increased sales or lowered staff turnover, the important part is that it is measurable, and in-line with the business objectives.

STEP 3: Regular, micro-sized activities

Microlearning is an approach which deals with relatively small learning units. It involves short-term-focused strategies that have a routinized drum beat to regularly re-enforce the learning.

By offering employees short, to-the-point training content that have clear and intentional behavioral changes embedded in them, employees not only become more engaged but also show an increased willingness to improve their performance.

“Do you really want a bunch of 20-minute videos? Or would you rather have a system that allows each sales rep to learn just what they need for five minutes a day – and follow up by posting their own videos and evaluating their colleagues?”

Josh Bersin: HR Technology Disruptions 2018 Report

STEP 4: Engage learners in a story where they are the hero

Storytelling has been at the heart of our cultures from the dawn of mankind. From entertainment to religion, stories capture our imagination and gets us to pay attention. Our brains have been hardwired to understand and relate to stories.

The brain easily remembers well organized stories almost like it remembers melodies or songs. In the same way that music is a vehicle to relay complex information in a universally understandable and relatable way, storytelling has similar impacts. Storytelling takes a series of random events and distills them into the essence of what really matters, allowing everyone to understand and relate to the story.

In other words, story, just like music is a SENSE-MAKING PROCESS.

Donald Miller, Author of “Building A Storybrand” summarized the basic 7 plot point of a story as –

A Character, who wants something

Who has a problem or obstacle to overcome

Who meets a guide

That gives them a plan

And calls them to action

That ends in a success

And helps them avoid failure

Use these 7 plot points to help tell a story with every message and learning activity to get your employees engaged in the learning process.

TIP: Employees need to be placed as the hero in the story and the company should be placed as the GUIDE in the story helping the hero achieve his/her aspirations and character transformations.

STEP 5: Contribution and collaboration

Working in teams on complex problems requires a variety of skills and expertise. As employees identify and explore their own strengths, weaknesses, and skills, they gain an understanding of how combining the various skills of several individuals can contribute to greater success. To achieve the team goal, learners can capitalise on each individual’s strengths and varying perspectives.

Traditionally it has been held that the primary benefits of collaborative work are social: interpersonal communication, trust, and skill in working with others. However, a collaborative and cooperative learning experience can also lead to significant advances in individual understanding.

About Yellowseed Consulting

Our purpose is simple: we help our clients to up their people game.  We use relevant and innovative approaches to help our clients i) get the right people into their business, ii) develop and grow their people in an efficient and effective way and iii) maintain high levels of engagement, innovation and collaboration throughout their business.  

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