Learner First Model Part 3
Learning goals help determine what knowledge you need to share with your learners, and what success means to you when delivering your training.
This blog is from a 12 part series about our learner-first training model. If you’d like to read more about the learner-first model, you can check out the other articles in the series, or download a free copy of our ebook.
The learner-first training approach places the learner at the center of your training strategy.
When learner pathways are structured, tools are chosen and learning is designed with the learner in mind, trainers will see more engaged learners, better training outcomes, and happier, healthier, smarter workplaces.
The evaluation stage is about gaining as much understanding of
your learners and your learning goals as possible before building
out your training.
By starting your training process with a comprehensive understanding of your learner, your training structure, tools, and content will flow seamlessly.
For this article, we will focus on identifying learning goals.
Once you have a comprehensive understanding of your learners, it’s time to identify your learning goals.
Your learning goals will help you determine what knowledge you need to share with your learners, as well as defining what success means to you when rolling out your training.
The Learner Experience Report by Brandon Hall Group in 2019 has found that only 54.9% of small-mid sized organization’s learning strategy includes and aligns with their learner goals.
There are three stages to identify your learning goals that we will look at in-depth.
Defining your learning requirements means knowing exactly what your learners need to learn. Whilst this may sound obvious, it can get a little more tricky as your learner base grows.
For example, you may be developing a company-wide training course for a new core product offering.
Your sales team may need to learn the key sales features of the new product, how to successfully demonstrate it to potential customers, and potential objections that may encounter around purchasing the product.
Your customer success team may need to learn more about how the
product is engineered; they don’t necessarily have an interest in key sales
features or demonstrations, as they’re dealing with customers who have
already bought the product.
Learning requirements go deeper than basic distinctions like department and geographic region.
For example, one section of your sales team may be selling your new product to a certain target market—say, wholesalers. Their product training should focus on the product from the view of the wholesaler.
That’s not to say that you should be building different training for each of your individual learners. Realistically, most trainers simply won’t have the time to do this. Instead, we recommend identifying the learning requirements for each of your learner persona groups, to create a powerful training experience.
Next, you’ll need to gain an understanding of what your learners already know. Trying to teach your learners something they already know is a surefire way to kill engagement levels.
The more you can tailor your training strategy to individual learners, the more effective it will be. By locating knowledge gaps and focusing your training on those gaps, you’ll ensure that precious training time isn’t wasted.
Here are some objective ways you can locate knowledge gaps in your business:
The learner-first model recommends to revisit your learner personas and locate the knowledge gaps for each persona group.
Remember—the more you can tailor your training strategy to individual learners, the more effective it will be. We recommend revisiting your learner personas and locating knowledge gaps for each persona group.
For example, if your training involves Workplace Safety then you could deliver a survey around that topic to each of your learner persona groups.
By evaluating your survey results, you may find that one of your groups has a better understanding of Workplace Safety than other teams. Knowledge gap located!
If you’re a larger organization with a sizeable training budget, you can use emerging technologies to locate knowledge gaps in real time. Adaptive learning platforms are a great example of an emerging learner-first technology.
The final step in defining your learning goals is to combine your learning requirements with your knowledge gaps.
By starting with what your learners need to learn, and taking away what they already know, it will allow you to identify the knowledge you need to share in your training to meet learning goals.
The following equation puts it simply:
Complete the above for each of your learner personas. As a result, it will give you a detailed and accurate list of learning goals.
You’ve paved the foundations for a comprehensive learner-first training strategy—give yourself a quiet fist pump!
The next phase of the learner-first model is the build phase.
This phase focuses on learning how to use your newfound understanding of your learners and learning goals and will aid in developing your training structure.
Want to find out more?
Contact our team for a chat to discuss how we could help with learning in your organization.