Avoiding The Problem


Everyone has a friend or relative that is avoiding a health issue that is making them ill or less than top of their game.  They won’t seek medical advice and believe if they ignore the problem it will go away.

When I wrote The Training Physical, it was with the hope I could convince many a training professional to see the benefit of early detection and treatment.  A Training Department can only return on the investment if they are healthy enough to perform well.  And yet, it is my primary audience that is shying away from the process.

Senior Managers are on board, and yet that makes the audit process tough when it is forced upon the training staff. 

For anyone reading this blog (someone is reading right?), you are probably familiar with the American Society of Training Development or ASTD for short.  Among other things, they run an annual international conference and expo to which they are always seeking speakers on topics of interest to the learning profession.

Last year I sold several copies of The Training Physical in the bookstore, so this year I decided to proposal a 90-minute session on the topic in hopes of warming my target audience up to the idea of self-evaluation.

Well my proposal was flatly declined, and I can only assume it is because it was seen as an attack on the sanctity of the untouchable training world.  I’ve attended the ASTD conference since 1997 and I have never seen this kind of a topic before, and I think I am learning why.

ASTD wants to sell training just like every other training vendor in the world, and that more training makes us better training professionals.  I agree with that to a point, but the Performance Consultant in me wants people to focus on what will make a difference.

The Training Physical is much like a Training Needs Analysis of a performance situation.  If we are to expect our clients to endorse this step prior to training, then we should be open to this same evaluation ourselves.

So I am left to wonder how I am going to improve the impression of a healthy training department when the premier learning association in the world wants nothing to do with the concept of improving their members.

What are your thoughts and ideas?

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