Let’s face it, good training costs good money. Another reality is that often money spent on training doesn’t yield results. In over a decade of experience, the most effective strategy I’ve encountered for maximizing training dollars is found in the quote:
“Need-to-Know, Nice-to-Know, Where-to-Go” – Bob Pike of The Bob Pike Group
Most training is designed with input from three groups. The budget watchers want the training to cost as little as possible in terms of time, energy, and money. The productivity pundits want as much as possible taught so that people get the most out of the technology. The enthusiasts just love technology and want to show everyone how cool it is. The result is that an average training session has way too much content and way too little time to properly cover it.
The solution is to take the lists of topics to be covered and divide them into three parts.
- Need-to-Know is only what people need to know to get their job done, period. This is all that should be planned to be included in the average training session.
- Nice-to-Know are the “bells and whistles” and “tips and tricks”. These are the cool things that may help people do things faster and make things more fun. Consider holding these topics in reserve for those sessions when you have time left after covering Need-to-Know.
- Where-to-Go is where you put content that won’t likely be needed right away or will only impact a small percentage of your participants. In other words, it is the content that for most people is not needed. For Where-to-Go give people links or some kind of direction as to where to find reference materials.
I challenge you to get with your team and take a careful look at the topics you plan to cover in your training sessions for your next technology rollout. Divide them up into Need-to-Know, Nice-to-Know, Where-to-Go. If you do, you are almost guaranteed to have better than average results. For some practical tips see this Step-by-Step guide.