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Fried Training Talk- Assessing The Need For Training

Published: Friday, August 9, 2019
Updated: Friday, August 09, 2019

It has been an interesting week here as one project ramped down and a couple others started to ramp up. This included a Training Needs Analysis for one potential project. I have a list of 18 questions I typically use when starting a new project.

Here are the 1st 9:

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    1. What is the business need for this training?
    2. Who are the learners? (Length of service, general ages, backgrounds)
    3. How many people need this training (total)?
    4. How many people will attend each session?
    5. If training is successful, what changes in behavior will you see?
    6. Specific topics to be addressed by training?
    7. How will you measure these changes?
    8. How will training measure the changes?
    9. Who will see these changes and how will they be tracked?

What other questions do you think are of prime importance when determining if training is the proper solution for the identified issue?


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Here are a few more of the questions I typically ask:
10. How would not doing this training impact your work environment?
11. What follow up can you do to make this training successful?
12. What materials are already in place to support the business goal?
13. Is there a performance support tool that is being used or should be used?
14. Biggest hurdles to making this training a success?
15. Availability for staff to be trained?

What am I still missing?
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I would throw in a word of caution where often the training consultant / external trainer may find themselves in the deep end. Because many trainers have a limited idea of performance improvement and many performance consultants have a limited idea on how to design training (instruction design concepts), it is always better to remain authentic to your craft, your profession and our professional community. Seek education, stay curious.
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"Who in the organization will be impacted by these changes?" A common problem I've encountered is one department changing their processes but not informing other departments either up or down stream, causing disconnects and snags. Determine how a change in practice is going to impact information flow across the organization.
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