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How I Used the ATD Capability Model to Write My Performance Objectives

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

How do you decide which objectives to create and list for your yearly workplace performance objectives? As an employee and team member of a talent and knowledge management team, I recently turned to the Talent Development Capability Model for inspiration. This seemed sensible because the model describes “what practitioners need to KNOW and DO to develop themselves, others, and their organizations.” The ATD Talent Development Capability Model is researched-based and outlines the knowledge and skills necessary to be an agile and comprehensive talent development professional. In addition, I knew I would be studying for the new CPTD exam, so referring to the model would aid in preparing for that certification. I used the model to guide my objective writing this year.

I began by first completing the self-assessment tracking sheet to discover where there were opportunities for development. Based upon the results and my prioritization of areas for improvement, I decided to focus on two capability areas: project management and consulting & business partnering. These were pulled directly from the Building Personal Capability and Impacting Organizational Capability domains of the Capability Model, respectively. With these opportunities identified, I included two objectives in my employee professional development plan this year.

Objective 1: Employ consistent project management processes and tools to manage and deliver projects that meet stakeholder needs on schedule.


  • Projects delivered on schedule
  • Performance feedback from stakeholders

Progress: I earned a Project Management Foundations certificate via LinkedIn Learning in late March and will lead a large project soon.


Objective 2: Provide timely, effective, and courteous consultative solutions to address stakeholder needs.


  • Performance review by stakeholders
  • Stakeholder satisfaction

Progress: I searched for, located, and saved a treasure trove of consulting resources from another team at my workplace. In addition to perusing and implementing some of these resources, I also purchased a how-to book for consultants. While I have yet to implement a formal stakeholder review of my consultative performance, I have had business partners specifically request to work with me again, which seems positive. By being a staunch advocate for learners and a respectful and resourceful collaborator with business partners, I will continue to hone my consulting craft.

Both the self-assessment tracking sheet and my workplace objectives form asked me to populate the resources that I will use (or similar). These could be courses, books, webcasts, coaching, mentoring, podcasts, videos, stretch assignments, or otherwise that may help someone learn more about each objective and how to implement what is learned. will soon unveil a feature that will enable users to create their own learning plan that may be built “from ATD resources that will close knowledge and skill gaps to prepare you for the next step in your career: a new role, a certification, or long-term development.”

The ATD Talent Development Capability Model serves as a helpful guide for writing personal and professional learning goals.

About the Author

Christina Heilig, MSEd, APTD, is an instructional designer and e-learning developer with experience in the higher education, financial, software, and nonprofit realms. She earned a master’s degree in instructional technology with emphases in human performance improvement and instructional design. In addition, she holds a post-baccalaureate certificate in web-based learning. Christina is enjoying learning more about talent development and is a member of the Greater Cincinnati Association of Talent Development and her employer’s Professional Development Committee. Christina would like to continue growing by teaching online courses and presenting on topics related to instructional design, performance improvement, and talent development.

1 Comment
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Good article, good reading, and showing a process that can work. Thanks for the post!
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