Dick Handshaw - Real Learning. Real Results.
Training that Delivers Results: Instructional Design that Aligns with Business Goals

Dick Handshaw’s new book is available for Amazon pre-order now.


Posted: January 24

Training 2014 Conference in San Diego

This winter weather definitely has me looking forward to attending the Training 2014 Conference in San Diego, CA more than ever! It is always a great conference and San Diego, where it’s currently seventy degrees and sunny, never fails to provide the perfect reprieve from the cold!

I will be presenting my session “Analyzing Performance Gaps” at 10:45 Monday morning, February 3rd.  This session uses Dana and Jim Robinson’s “Gaps Map” process to identify both learning and non-learning solutions to deliver business results. The Gaps Map process is a type of needs analysis that compares the “is” state to the “should” state, for both business results and performance. This is how performance consultants identify the gap between what is currently happening and what should happen, relative to the business goal. Although the process sounds simple enough, there are specific techniques for both asking questions and establishing a strong consulting relationship, that are really quite specific. After explaining the process in detail, I will show a four-part video demonstrating exactly how the ideal Gaps Map meeting with a client should be conducted. From there, I’ll ask for feedback from the audience to see if they have identified key best practices or observed any errors.

Frequently written off as too time consuming, the needs analysis process is often overlooked by clients and training professionals.  However, it can be difficult to deliver results, even with great training programs, if you haven’t correctly identified the specific behavior that will ultimately result in achievement of the business goal. Time spent in the Gaps Map process can be the best investment you can make in any training project. The Gaps Map process is not difficult to learn and is really quite efficient, once you take the time to practice and elicit feedback on your progress.

I hope to see you in sunny San Diego. I’m counting the days.

Dick Handshaw’s first book, Training that Delivers Results: Instructional Design that Aligns with Business Goals is available for pre-order now!

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Posted: January 14

Start Your Performance Consulting Practice with You by Peter Engels

Guest Blog - Start Your Performance Consulting Practice with You by Peter Engels

I was recently speaking with a friend who is trying to change industries, about how to position himself as a newcomer in the field. This led to my thinking about the hurdles that instructional designers and training departments face when they try to incorporate performance consulting methods into their current practices. We talk at great length about how to proactively pursue change and ask questions that go beyond training to get to the heart of the performance gap.  However, this all depends on clients and stakeholders believing in the performance improvement process and their trust that you have the skills to use it.  This begins with how you present yourself.

If performance improvement is not currently used in your organization, but you or your learning organization feels it could add value to the work you do, start introducing yourself and your methods with a performance improvement spin. If adding to your title, even unofficially, is not permitted in your organization, it can still be easy to introduce yourself as a learning professional who utilizes performance improvement methods. Another way to include performance improvement concepts is in the analysis and design phases of your projects. Stakeholders will undoubtedly ask “what does this mean to us?” This question opens the door for you to talk about the benefits of connecting training to larger business goals and researching the root cause of workplace issues to find the best solution.

Throughout these conversations and through your work, highlight the “value add” you will bring to the project by using performance improvement methods. Provide examples, either from previous projects or by crafting a scenario out of a current project, to show the effectiveness and savings on the end-result. In addition to positioning yourself as someone who practices performance improvement, prove it by engaging in self-directed professional development or blogging and publishing to build your performance consultant brand within the organization.

While it can be challenging to change the direction of an organization’s methods and introduce new concepts, noticeable progress can be made by changing the way you present yourself professionally and the evidence you have to support it. By establishing yourself as the resident performance improvement expert – even when no one else is talking about performance improvement – you may be able to start a conversation to really begin working on closing your organization’s performance gaps.

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Posted: December 5

Hosted by: SIEMENS ENERGY in Charlotte, NC on February 10-14, 2014. The workshop is open to the public. You don’t have to be an employee of Siemens Energy to attend. Please click on the link above for additional registration information. 

Become a Certified ROI Professional

Fully master all the skills you need to implement a comprehensive ROI initiative in your organization in our five-day Certification workshops. You’ll gain the skills to become certified in the ROI Methodology™, and you’ll learn how to sustain the measurement and evaluation process on a continued basis. You’ll also receive support when you complete the workshop to conduct an impact study in your own organization. When you’ve demonstrated competency in applying the ROI Methodology™, you will earn the prestigious Certified ROI Professional designation.

ROI Benefits

The ROI Methodology™ is a proven method to show the contribution of programs in terms that executives appreciate. It is used to improve programs, build support, increase commitment, enhance relationships with key stakeholders, and secure funding. You will also have access to the Members Only area of our website which provides you with resources, tools, templates, and networking.

During ROI Certification, Learn How To:

- Apply the ROI Methodology™ to a program in your own organization

- Gain detailed, first-hand experience with every step

- Calculate ROI and explain its meaning

- Measure the contribution of all types of programs

- Enhance program results & improve ROI

- Discover how to use intangibles.

- Practice reporting results in an executive briefing

- Explore how to sustain the use of ROI

 Certification Benefits:

- Demonstrate ability in conducting an impact study

- A professional designation of Certified ROI Professional upon successful completion of your own impact study

- Permission to conduct one-day workshops on thROI Methodology™ in your own organization

- Sought-after skills that will make you more credible and valuable to your organizations executives

 Who Should Attend:

This workshop is designed for learning and HR managers and specialists who need the skills to measure impact and ROI of all types of programs. Typical programs include technical training, IT training, compliance training, sales training, empowerment programs, leadership development, talent management, and recruiting. The process applies to facilitator-led programs, blended-learning programs, and e-learning programs.




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704.731.5314 | dick.handshaw@handshaw.com |  © 2014 Dick Handshaw.