Archives for the ‘Pete’s Comments’ Category

Forget About the Learning Curve, Learn About the Forgetting Curve

The Learning Curve It is (or should be) well understood in the training business that trying a new technique will result in an initial drop in performance. Coaches often need to encourage learners to continue using the new technique until they get up the learning curve. In other words, keep chugging and eventually your performance […]

Millions of Tiny Transactions

Work  Breakdown A key principle of lean manufacturing is creating smaller batches, ideally, batches of one unit. It reduces inventory and enables a greater degree of customization. The same thing has been happening to a lot of information work. Think about it. You get an email for which you need to provide a quick response. […]

Who Will Be the SME?

One consistent challenge in many of our projects is finding a subject matter expert, or “SME.” Especially when we are involved in emerging areas of work (such as new products or change initiatives) because, in these situations, there really is no one who has “done the job in the field”…there is no SME. This can […]


Everyone’s Favorite Health Drink   Coffee can be indispensable in the workplace. We just read a study about how coffee really works. Kind of the reverse of the conventional wisdom. According to this study, in layman’s terms, coffee doesn’t really “wake you up” as much as it keeps you from getting sleepy. Here are the details.  […]

Tired of ADDIE-Bashing

Training program design and development can be similar to programming…at least if this programmers tirade is somewhat accurate if exaggerated (which I have no reason to doubt). Warning: The language can be abrasive and inappropriate but if you get past that, the humor is undeniable. Example line “Not a single living person knows how everything in your five-year-old […]

Thin Wallets

Years ago (more than five) I remember going into a meeting carrying a large easel, a large roll of paper, a box or two of handouts, and two briefcases loaded with a laptop, misc folders, paper tablets, and other stuff. My client started laughing as I struggled to drag everything to the front of the […]

No One Root Cause

Everybody Loves Analysis When I first got involved with performance technology, I couldn’t help but notice the amount of emphasis placed on “Analysis.” The implication was that most consultants didn’t do enough (or any, or not the right kind) and that, as a result, often conducted training that was off-target or even unnecessary and, ultimately, […]

Real Time Management

OK…I have a pretty good level of familiarity with various time and task management methods and tools. Still, I can’t seem to keep up. And no matter how close to keeping up I get, I still have a million things on “the list.” It seems like the only time management method that works is kind […]

Does “Lean” Work? Can Anything Work Well Enough to Avoid Eventual De-Bunking?

I just read an article that seems to indicate that “lean” may be starting to suffer the same type of fate as “TQM” and “re-engineering” and pretty much every other approach or solution that gets lots of attention, then gets widely implemented because everyone is doing it. Fads always die out. Great ideas become lame […]

Everyone Their Own Factory

We were conducting a job analysis meeting earlier this week to document work outputs, tasks, supporting knowledge/skills, etc. for two roles. (We will use the information to define the roles and map out an overall recommended career/development path.) We do this work frequently but this time I was struck by the tension between streamlining and […]