Apply the A-B-C-D model to create learning objectives. Use precise learning objectives to focus your training design on necessary content while eliminating waste. Verify participants have been fully trained by observing whether they have achieved the learning objectives for your course. Enhance your credibility by gaining agreement with stakeholders on what a fully-trained employee should know and be able to do.
- One of the most common questions in training is how do you know if someone has been trained? You can save yourself a lot of headaches if you answer this question before developing your training program. That way, you can focus your training on meeting those objectives and eliminate any other content that's not related. I like to use the ABCD model to develop learning objectives. A is the audience being trained. B is the behavior you want them to demonstrate. C is the conditions where the demonstration should occur.
This might be an in-class exercise, a quiz or even a task or assignment back on the job. D is the degree of accuracy learners need to exhibit to be fully trained. For instance, you might require them to pass a quiz by getting 80% or more of the answers correct. I challenged the live class to come up with an ABCD learning objective for a training scenario. If you'd like to try it yourself, I invite you to download the auto-bill scenario from the exercise files.
Push pause and try to create an ABCD learning objective for this scenario. When you're ready, push play again, and see what the live class came up with. And I've got a scenario for you. Basically, we've been asked to do some training for our customer service representatives on auto-billing, and if you're not familiar with auto-billing, I think most people are these days, what it is if you're signed up for a service of some kind, then instead of having to manually make a payment for that service, let's say on a monthly basis, it's automatically deducted from your credit card, debit card or perhaps checking account.
And so we're being asked to do this training as a response to customers who call in to make a late payment. So one of the customer service initiatives is to offer that service to customers so that they're no longer late with their payments. It's kind of a win-win. We get paid, customers don't have to incur late fees or the additional hassle of calling in because they forgot to make their payment. And our goal for this training program and the project is to get about 75% of these customers to sign up. So what I want to ask you to do, in your groups, is take just a moment and see if you can write a learning objective for this training that fits the ABCD model.
So the audience, the behavior you'd like to see them demonstrate, the conditions where we're going to test that, and the degree to which they need to demonstrate it accurately for us to say these folks have been trained in auto-billing. So let me give you a few minutes, here if you need me, otherwise, we'll come back in a couple and see what you come up with. (group chatter) - How about, how about the, giving a prompt, the customer service number is given a prompt of a customer's issue with a late payment.
- [Woman] Mmhmm they will be able to to provide a feature that resolves that particular issue, or given four different issues that customer service representatives will have, they will be able to find a feature that will resolve that customer's issue each and every time, so that we have the audience is the CSR, the behavior is amenable to provide a feature-- - Accurately offer - Accurately offer, like just describe the auto-billing.
- (Woman)So, if the, I think the behaviors. - So the behaviors, what do you want people to do as a part of the training? What behavior do you need to see? - [Woman] We need them to offer it on all the late pay calls. - So offered on all calls would be the behavior on the job. So how are we going to assess this? - [Woman] Oh, how do we assess it in training? - Yeah. For example, might be to make a, demonstrate an appropriate offer on a simulated call. Or maybe we're going to observe five calls after training, and we want to see it offered on each call.
- Okay. - [Man] So they just demonstrate in a... - Alright. Let's start with audience. Who's the audience for this one? CSR's, okay. And what do you want our CSR's to do? - If I can have them explain that, Hey we will waive your late fee right now, or you won't experience late fees in the future. That is something that I can observe, measure, and specifically train to. - So what's the conditions? How are we going to test this? Are we going to have them, are we going to listen to calls after the training or are we going to have them do an in class simulation, something else we hadn't thought of? - The ideal scenario if possible, since these people are already in roll, in the training program give them practice doing it with real customers.
- So live calls? Okay. - [Man] Ideally, but if not, simulation would be the next best thing. - And you bring up something, which is critical, doing the actual work is almost always the ideal. So, if I'm making these objectives, I can have something in class, but there's always going to be something that's kind of vaguely not 100 percent authentic about it, but if they're going right back and they're going to be doing the work, perfect opportunity to say my objective extends past the class portion, and maybe I'm going to listen to their next five calls. Is that fair? - CSRs will make an auto-bill offer by explaining it's benefits to five consecutive customers who are calling to make late payments.
Now, it's your turn to apply this concept to one of your own training programs. I suggest you download the ABCD learning objectives worksheet. Use it to create a learning objective for a training program you are developing. You can also apply the model to an existing program that doesn't already have clear objectives.
- Identifying employee training needs
- Creating an individual development plan
- Developing learning objectives
- Preparing employees for training
- Evaluating a training program
- Presenting with confidence and clarity
- Facilitating discussions and learning
- Managing breaks effectively
- Delivering training via webinar