You’ve got a new technology that you know will be fantastic for your organization. Now the hard work begins. You have to get your users to actually adopt the new tool(s) and integrate a new way of working into their current, comfortable day-to-day routine.
To get your users to take the leap, you’ll want to invest some time and energy into creating a thoughtful learning plan. Keep reading for a few of our hints on how to take the stress out of putting your learning plan into motion!
A Change Workout Plan – Beginning with the End
Our last post on change management focused on User Groups and the idea that a “one size fits all” approach can be risky. When it comes to deploying training, the message really is no different.
As you think of the user groups who will engage with the new technology, imagine what success with their new workflow should look like a few months post-deployment. With the end goal in mind, take a moment now to rewind in your mind to how these users are working today.
Are we talking a subtle and easy-to-digest change or are we talking a mammoth marathon-type endeavor? Who are the users who will have the biggest disruption and what resistance might be in place? With answers to these questions, you will be better able to prescribe the right types of exercises to get your users fit for the task of changing!
Walk in the Park or Marathon Training?
Just like your fitness goals, when it comes to considering learning plans, you want to design a workout that will get you across the finish line as sensibly as possible. Generally, there isn’t just one type of exercise or learning event that will be the ticket; we usually need to offer a blend of possibilities for users to get in shape for the transition.
Consider your unique users as you determine the right mix of in-person versus virtual learning events. While many users prefer an in-person approach, a quality virtual learning session will generally give the learner the same core takeaways (while keeping your budget in check).
Another consideration is to look at the technology in terms of digestibility. Will bite-sized feature overviews be more palatable or would giving users a longer dose of holistic learning create a more pleasant experience?
Finally, do be sure to consider whether the users will be most motivated to “show up” for mandated training sessions or “choose their own adventure” with self-paced and/or self-selected options.
Ready, Set, Go
To get users ready for a change, be sure to provide them with the more in-depth and comprehensive learning events prior to the launch of the new technology. Change comes with a dose of anxiety for many, and one of the best ways to boost the confidence of the team is to equip them with tools to succeed up front!
Once users know the basics from your initial training, you can shift your approach a bit and get creative after the “go live” of the new tech. How about offering a “question and answer call line” or a peer panel to show off a department’s success with the change? Could you generate interest in some peer-to-peer shadowing and best practice idea swaps?
They key is to realize that while we often will continue to offer some traditional learning opportunities, there is some wiggle room for you to find other fun ways to get your users to dig a bit deeper!
You’ll really get the change to be “sticky” with your users when you continue to feed them with learning opportunities in the weeks and months that follow the change. Not everyone may have been ready to really embrace the new tools during their first encounter with training, but in the weeks following a “go live” you’ll have some users who will finally realize that the new technology is here to stay. They’ll realize it’s time to get on board and will now be looking for learning opportunities to help them get started.
You’ll likely have another subset of users who have been sticking to the plan all along (ROCK STARS) who are now itching to take their learning to “pro” status. Let’s not miss the chance to feed into the appetite of those hungry learners. Rock stars deserve your attention too!
We’d love to hear about some of your successful learning plans! Let us know your winning moments in the comments section below.