2 Key Considerations for Professional Development Success

by The Persimmon Group | November 16, 2016

As the year draws to a close, many organizations are likely focusing on a shortlist of items, including: goal setting (reviews and adjustments), budgeting, and performance reviews. In the majority of our recent client conversations, the result of tackling these particular components has funneled into a single point of emphasis – their training and development programs for 2017.
When it comes to helping organizations structure their training and development programs, we always start with two key considerations that may help frame some of your early ideas for the upcoming year.

Type of Program

The first major consideration for training and development programs concerns the type of program required. The who, what, how, where, and when of training and development will help to determine which of the 3 following categories of development program we may recommend:


Affecting change

The second consideration poses itself as a question: how fast are you wanting to affect change?

The speed with which we want to see adaptation and change has a direct correlation with the frequency of training, in addition to the methods used.

As a general rule of thumb, performance-focused development programs are typically the most urgent as they tend to be more reactive, characteristically. Tactical programs may also have an element of urgency to them, however, their focus on larger groups tends to slow just how fast they can be executed and usually leverage follow up or sequenced training to impact more lasting operational changes. Strategic programs are, more often than not, extensive in nature; not only do you want to ensure assimilation of knowledge and business approaches within these groups, it’s a long term investment by the organization that can lead directly into succession planning, and also helps with leadership retention and business growth.

Let’s look at a quick example: We have a somewhat urgent need for training on safety procedures over the coming months due to recent regulatory updates. In order to avoid pulling all of our shop floor personnel away from production for an hour long classroom training course, a more effective and time sensitive option may be 10-minute safety “tailgates” at the beginning of shifts. This way the new safety information is top-of-mind as shifts begin, can be shared gradually, and reiterated often, to help with the assimilation of knowledge.

While these initial considerations are not intended to be all encompassing, they are critical to the program development process and we hope you find them to be a good starting point, and a helpful framework, for building programs that can impact lasting change.

For more information on how The Persimmon Group helps organizations create and implement training and development programs visit our Leadership Development & Coaching page.

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