Transforming organizations to improve their products and services
Creating training that solves organizational problems and drives business results
Helping employees improve their skills and increase their value to the organization
The Basics of Performance Improvement
Performance Improvement is not an event. To be effective it must be part of your company's day to day operations.
It starts with goal setting, and continues with the manager and individual contributors monitoring progress toward the goals. Giving productive and useful feedback, having conversations that help people understand how they can meet goals, and informal communication help build the trust necessary for driving results and developing employees.
What is an Instructional Designer Anyway?
Instructional Designers are learning strategists tasked with increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of training people in the knowledge, skills and abilities needed to be effective. They are agents of positive organizational change. They want to make you better at what you do, no matter how good you already are.
The field has roots in the psychology, process improvement, project management organizational development, sociology, physiology, technical writing, and efficiency. It may very well be the broadest specialty in corporate America.
That is kind of a textbook definition, but what does it mean?
As you can tell, a lot of theory is behind what Designers do, but there is a whole lot of practical aspects to it.
Designers often asked to develop a training program on a topic they don’t know much about.
So they do a lot of detective work.They talk to experts, observe people on the job, perform independent research. They take the thousand mile up view and combine it with the nitty gritty minutia of day to day work. This is the analysis phase of the project.
Once they are loaded down with information they have to convert everything into a learner experience that lasts anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours. Sometimes the training takes place in the classroom, sometimes it is in the form of interactive e-learning with animation and sophisticated information graphics, sometimes it’s a manual. It’s always created with the learner in mind.
Designers strive to make the learning experience interesting, but our main focus is retention. We want to make sure the learning sticks. If people remember what they learned in a course and are able to apply it on the job, and if it makes people better at what they do, then the training has met expectations.
Good Designers are never satisfied when someone says the training is effective. They evaluate the training through surveys and test item analysis.