ASTD to ATD: An Interview with Jennifer Tomarchio, Chapter Advisor and CPLP
Friday, June 20, 2014

Six weeks into our transition from ASTD to the Association for Talent Development (ATD), I’m pleased to share with you a recent interview with one of our chapter advisors who also holds the CPLP credential. The change management our chapters are undertaking is impressive and we’re grateful Jennifer Tomarchio was willing to share her thoughts. I hope to be able to share more interviews like this in the future. We’re also recording video interviews and will be posting those in the coming weeks on our microsite.


Jennifer Tomarchio is the president of Tomarchio Instructional Design and has been an active chapter volunteer for nearly ten years. She currently serves as an ATD National Advisor for Chapters.

TB:  On our Chapter Leaders Group on LinkedIn you recently started a discussion that encourages chapter leaders to see the re-branding of ASTD to ATD as an opportunity to grow membership. Can you expand on that idea and share what opportunities you see?

JT:  As is demonstrated in the Competency Model, our profession reaches beyond training and development. The association’s new name supports this and helps to leverage the opportunity to reach to new target markets for potential members. I believe the name alone appeals to operations managers, senior executives, human resources professionals, and anyone interested in improving the performance of employees and organizations. Who wouldn’t be interested in that?


TB:  Chapters have a year to transition to the new brand. Some chapters are well on their way to being completely re-branded and others are formulating their change plan. What are some ideas and best practices you have seen floating around that other chapters should know about?

JT:  The best course of action is to start with the Chapter Branding Implementation Checklist.  Then, use the Governance Job Aid to start making changes. I’ve seen some chapters use the Model Bylaws to review their current bylaws and make changes for re-branding. These chapters have also taken the opportunity to adjust other aspects of their bylaws at the same time. It’s a good idea to revisit chapter bylaws every couple of years as the profession, chapters, and membership evolves.

TB:  You also are a CPLP credential holder. What opportunities do you see for the CPLP community with the transition to our new name?

JT:  CPLP credential holders know the depth and breadth of our profession, since we are versed in the competencies of all areas of expertise. The CPLP community can spread the word to open up opportunities for employers to recognize the credential on a larger scale. The new name can open up CPLP-preferred positions beyond training and development positions. Why not CPLP-preferred for executive coaches, LMS administrators & knowledge managers, organization development leaders, performance improvement specialists, change agents, etc.?

TB:  In choosing this name we view talent development as the umbrella under which all of the work of practitioners in our field comes together. You own your own instructional design company, so I'm interested to know how you interpret talent development, and how you see the relationship of talent development to instructional design?

JT:  Instructional Design is my “area of expertise.” But, I see it as a catalyst for performance improvement and talent development. The goal for all instructional design projects is that the employee will apply what they’ve learned on the job, improve their own performance, and impact the bottom line of the organization.

TB:  Any last thoughts for your fellow chapter leaders and CPLP colleagues?

JT:  This is an exciting time to be in the talent development profession. For years I’ve had to deliver an elevator speech any time anyone asked me what I do for a living. Perhaps instead of saying I’m an Instructional Designer or a Trainer, I will say that I do talent development. Let’s see how that resonates and how much further explanation is required. I believe it will speak for itself, especially among the C-level professionals.

About the Author
Tony Bingham is the president and CEO of the Association for Talent Development, formerly ASTD, the world’s largest professional association dedicated to those who develop talent in organizations. Tony works with a staff of 130, a Board of Directors, and a worldwide network of volunteers to empower professionals to develop talent in the workplace. 

Tony believes in creating a culture of engaged, high-performing teams that deliver extraordinary results. Deeply passionate about change, technology, and the impact of talent development, his focus is on adding value to ATD members and the global community of talent development professionals. He believes that aligning talent development efforts to business strategy, while utilizing the power of social and mobile technology for learning, is a key differentiator in business today.  
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