The sequence of events that usually unfolds is –
We receive the training need from operations
We ask a few basic questions to understand the specific problem
We rush of to design and then deliver the training program
Once the program is done we don’t really know if we were effective since we didn’t know what the actual issue was to begin with.
In other words we end up shooting in the dark.
In order to make sure that we know we have done an effective job every single time we conduct a training program, it is necessary to have a detailed dialogue with the operations team and understand their requirements.
To evaluate Level 3 behaviors, it’s necessary to begin with the end in mind. Probe to find out the one or two key behaviors that the stakeholders would like to see change. For e.g. Critical Behaviors for a presentation skills program may be ‘The participants can manage time during the presentation’ ‘The participants can handle questions while staying within the framework of the topic’
It is important to restrict the number of critical behaviors to a maximum of 3 per program. Too many critical behaviors will dilute the focus and participants will be unable to concentrate.
We should also ensure that there is a support system in place to aid the participants in demonstrating the critical behaviors on an on-going basis. In the presentation skills example, one of the supporting measures would be organizing practice presentations where the participants are observed and given feedback. This post training support should also be a part of training design.
With predefined critical behaviors and a robust support system in place, we as learning partners can ensure that the training we provide is effective and can be evaluated up to Level 3.
Preethi Rao is the training effectiveness specialist for C2C Consulting & Training Pvt Ltd, the only official affiliate of (The One and Only) Kirkpatrick Partners in India, She uses her 15 years of experience in L&D to enable her clients to assess the effectiveness of their training initiatives. You can reach our to her at firstname.lastname@example.org