As learning professionals we typically complete a post-implementation review at the end of a program’s formal components. Two or three months later, we measure capability uplift using a number of business metrics. Assuming we have used a blended learning framework such as 70:20:10, we evaluate these components separately so we can pinpoint the effectiveness of each element of the learner journey and incorporate what we’ve found into future learning design.
Often, the results of the 10 are outstanding, leaving us feeling all warm and fuzzy. We relish comments from learners praising the facilitator, the digital user experience, the messages of our subject matter experts and the well-designed reflective practice materials.
As we proceed to evaluate the remaining components of our design—usually the 20 and 70—we are left scratching our heads about why program participant engagement has dropped off, or the social learning buzz we had hoped for isn’t quite happening. Often our learners have only incorporated five per cent of the behaviour change we had hoped for.
Last month, when Charles Jennings introduced his latest book to us at DeakinPrime, I found a definitive answer. Something stood out as a missing piece in certain learning programs I have been involved with. The answer? Our client didn’t have a ‘game changer’ as part of the program team.
Charles’ book, 70:20:10 towards 100 per cent performance, challenged me to reflect on the best way to support the roll out and optimisation of blended programs. The book investigates 70:20:10 at a deep level and suggests five new critical roles that can take learning practitioners from expert in the 10 to experts in total performance. One of these roles is the ‘game changer’.
Source: Arets, J, Jennings, C & Heijnen, V 2015. 'Five new roles for the 70:20:10 expert' in 702010 towards 100% performance, Sutler Media, Maastricht, p54.
In reflecting back on some of the learning campaigns that didn’t deliver as much sustained behavioural change as was hoped, that was the missing piece. We had executive sponsorship, we had budget, and we had great learning design, well-constructed materials and highly capable program administrators. We did not always have a game changer within our client partners’ organisation.
A game changer is a team member with influence. It’s not the seniority of the role that gives it influence; it’s someone who believes in the need for the change, who can help executives understand why 70:20:10 works and how it works. Someone whose passion and energy for the lasting success of the program drives and commits others. The game changer is not an executive sponsor nor are they a program administrator. They are someone whose belief in 70:20:10 inspires those around them and whose passion for capability uplift infects executives and frontline employees alike.
When I think about our most impactful learning campaigns, I now see that a game changer was integral to their success—even though the team member wasn’t labelled as such at that time. With the significance of this role pinpointed, though, we can make a conscious effort to champion these passionate motivators and incorporate them in every program we develop moving forward.
Though it is just one change we should make, being the game changer is no small job. The game changer is only one of five new roles Charles and his co-authors present. The book is set to revolutionise how we see ourselves and just how much more impact we can have on organisational performance. It’s essential reading!