Instructional designers must speak the language of business.
(Alexandria, Virginia) September 12, 2023—In Aligning Instructional Design With Business Goals: Make the Case and Deliver Results, talent development expert and speaker Kris Newbauer advises instructional designers to become fluent in the language of business—i.e., money.
Instructional designers and talent development professionals often enter the adult learning industry because they want to design and deliver training that genuinely helps people learn and advance in their careers. Being generous with time and effort and sharing knowledge to help people grow are altruistic and common traits across TD professionals.
While well-versed in education theory and practices, TD professionals are often less focused on and less comfortable with the financial side of learning experiences, the side that their business leaders face head-on—i.e., the cost of learning, the investment learning requires, and the gains (or losses) organizations encounter from building learning programs. Instructional designers regularly work with budgets for their program proposals; yet they do not necessarily approach budgeting from the perspective of making a strong business case for their programs to their leaders. With the pressures organizations face and increasing expenses, TD professionals are often defensive regarding the costs their programs incur. As training programs are often the first to be cut during tight budget years, ensuring the finance team, leadership, and others clearly understand the value effective training programs add is more important than ever.
Newbauer speaks plainly, “To design effective learning programs, instructional designers need to focus on the desired impact on their company. To home in on impact, they need to speak the language of business. And to speak the language of business, they need to speak the language of money. That’s right—it’s all about the money.”
Newbauer focuses on rethinking the way TD professionals design instruction using evaluation. This helps them consider what knowledge, skills, and attitudes are needed to achieve business goals, and it provides strategies for measurement and evaluation that help demonstrate meaningful learning and business impact.
While not a measurement and evaluation (M&E) text, this volume outlines the benefits for instructional designers of building partnerships with their M&E colleagues to ensure that instructional designers design training solutions to achieve the best results—better learning that adds value to the organization.
“One of my goals is to build the partnership between measurement and evaluation specialists, instructional designers, and business leaders so they all understand the needs and importance of each group’s objectives and efforts and how a successful partnership contributes to better learning and better financial outcomes for an organization,” says Newbauer.
Kristopher J. Newbauer, EdM, MHRM, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, CPTD, CPT is the chief people officer and head of global people and talent for Rotary International and the Rotary Foundation. Newbauer has played a key role as a board member and leader in the International Accreditors for Continuing Education and Training (IACET). He was recognized as a Notable Leader in HR by Crain’s Chicago Business in 2020.
About ATD and ATD Press
The Association for Talent Development (ATD) is the world’s largest association dedicated to those who develop talent in organizations. ATD’s members come from more than 120 countries and work in public and private organizations in every industry sector. ATD Press publications are written by industry thought leaders and offer anyone who works with adult learners the best practices, academic theory, and guidance necessary to move the profession forward. For more information, visit td.org/books.
Aligning Instructional Design With Business Leaders
ISBN: 9781953946577 | 208 Pages | Paperback
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To schedule an interview with Kris Newbauer, please contact Kay Hechler, ATD Press senior marketing manager, at [email protected] or 703.683.8178.