Training Plan

In the book, Bare Bones Change Management: What you shouldn’t not do, Bob Lewis explained the seven must-have elements for any change management effort to have a chance of succeeding. Here are my takeaways from one of the topics discussed in the book.

When the subject is business change, a training plan qualifies as an assumption, not just an opinion or a “nice-to-have.” Everyone needs to understand their role in the change, and they need to have a common understanding of the shared expectations.

Bob offered the following recommendations for pulling together a training plan.

  • Engage the professionals early
  • Don’t let the training professionals sell employees short
  • Show employees how to do their jobs, not how to use the tools
  • Provide context, not just job-specific skills
  • Do not neglect brand training
  • Train just in time
  • Tailor training to the level of aptitude and confidence
  • Certify knowledge and skills
  • Provide floorwalkers or triage centers
  • Don’t assume you did it right

In addition to training people to adapt to the change or use the new tools, Bob pointed out some additional items.

One, develop a transition plan. While the training plan often describes the to-be environment, the transition plan will bridge the gap between the present as-is and the new to-be situation.

Two, have coping skill training for the managers. Train the managers to help their employees cope with the change. Not everyone will move through the stages of change at a uniform pace. The managers need to understand the dynamics within their areas and possess the skills to help their group implement the change.

Three, train the stakeholders. Rarely a change impacts only a handful of individuals. The organization needs to evaluate the pending impact on the stakeholders and to train/educate them about the change.