Tribal Knowledge At Point-of-Work Should Not Be Your Default

I know this happens. Even after the best training it still happens. Why? Knowledge retention fails. Pure and simple. We deliver awesome training and our level one evaluations confirm this. Level two evaluations prove “they got it!” At least they were able to pass the test or demonstrate proficiency to graduate. But did they “get it” long enough to apply it at Point-of-Work and moment of need?

Look at the Ebbinghhaus Forgetting Curve. I’ve seen variations of this graph but the bottom line is that none of us have the ability to remember long enough to apply knowledge we’ve gained during training, It’s a fact. So what do we do? Ask somebody else.

If they have it nailed, we’re good to go. If not, we perpetuate errors at the moment of need. That translates to hard dollars of business loss in the form of errors, rework, delay, material waste [insert the loss of your choice here] and this has been a topic of numerous of my prior blogs.

So what’s the alternative? Move learning AND support closer to the Point-of-Work…closer to those moments of need where memory fails us. Simple solution, right?

Actually, it is…if your L&D team is focused on the Point-of-Work and has accomplished the appropriate level of discovery to offer up solution assets intentionally designed for application at Point-of-Work and moment of need. These solutions asset are not created by traditional instructional design; rather, they are a product of Intentional Design.

“Intentionally designed for application at the moment of need at Point-of-Work; can your team deliver solutions of this nature? Can your team accomplish discovery to accurately determine what the assets should be? Do they address all 7-Right Things?

If not, we should have a conversation.

As a long time performance consultant, I am convinced the associated skill set in this discipline should be entrance criteria for anyone you hire in the future. Plan B is to bring existing team members up to speed with a critical set of discovery skills that address the Point-of-Work.

My suggestion is to complete an L&D Performance Assessment to determine current stat eand skill gaps that needed to be closed. The benefit of this assessment is having a repeatable methodology you can use on every request for training you receive in the future that should be modified to include a Point-of-Work intervention.

You will spend nothing more than time…to explore where I’m recommending you go to avoid defaulting to something less than sustained workforce performance at Point-of-Work.

Gary G. Wise
Workforce Performance Advocate, Coach, Speaker 
(317) 437-2555
Web: Living In Learning