Accelerate Performance

What is a Learning Path?

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What is a Learning Path?  Where does this fit with micro-learning & experience design?

There are a lot of assumptions in training & instructional design about what a Learning Path is. The most common one is as a generic alternative term for blended learning related to a job role. The other is to use it to describe a list of courses for people in particular job roles. Others are using the term to describe competency based training. Some platforms are using the term Learning Paths to describe a learning analytics feedback tool.

Most learning paths are developed without a clear methodology. This is ironic because the Learning Paths methodology is designed to remove variations in learning and performance.

The official definition of a Learning Path as per Steve Rosenbaum’s foundational text book, Learning Paths: Increase Profits by Reducing the Time It Takes Employees to Get Up-to-Speed is:

Learning Path = the total sequence of learning activities, including practice and experience, that leads to a desired level of proficiency in an entire job in the shortest possible time. The methodology for developing Learning Paths is a licensed methodology and there is Certification training program.

The significance of developing Learning Paths using the Learning Paths methodology, a proven global best practice, is that they get people up to speed 30-50% faster and deliver performance results as measurable improvements in KPI’s and successful employee performance. Learning Paths done properly result in significant cost savings and as much as 10-20x reduced training & development time. Other results are increased employee engagement and retention rates.

The reason we changed our name to Velocified was to emphasize this element of speeding up the performance process and the importance of developing a talent acceleration program.

The book is a very practical approach to the theory of Learning Paths and how they work. The project management methodology used to develop a Learning Path is a rapid development sprint and is specifically excluded from the book. The process is learned by participating in a first project with the help of a Certified Learning Paths Leader or attending a Certification training program.

Successful Learning Paths require the full collaboration and involvement of managers and the management process. The problem, when trainers try to implement their own adaptation of a Learning Path without learning the process, is that results fall short of what the methodology makes possible. Trainers tend to rely more on standard instructional design principles and past experience. They presume they know the process and use a banquet approach to fill in the rest. What’s missing is their exposure to an entirely different approach that incorporates an agile process, effective microlearning and experience design.

This difference is measurable in terms of lost opportunity in cost savings, company growth, capability enablement and talent attraction. We have developed a tool that calculates pre-project cost savings Learning Paths using the official methodology. These projects can introduce cost savings in the range of $100,000’s and even $M’s depending on the number of staff and their position. Post project results often introduce a multiplier effect through improved management processes and synergies.

The content of a Learning Path developed through this process is the true differentiator. This is what ultimately determines the measurable outcomes of success.

Like to learn more?  Watch the webinar replay of Talent Acceleration Strategies to Ramp Up Growth or get a free copy of the Guide to Talent Acceleration here.


Changing Expectations For The New Agile Workforce

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The new agile workforce is here now. It’s time to change our mindset & expectations around hiring & development.

Getting people to write their resumes to get the attention of machines that vet their ‘eligibility’ is such a waste of time & resources. Fewer people are competing for more specified positions.

Really, do you want someone to have to pretend to have or be what you need so they can get a job? Do you want to be that person?

The only thing people need is a desire to do that job with your organization & have the adaptability to learn it & succeed. The rest is up to you.

There are 2 solutions – either become more personal & meet people or make skills req’ts less specific & develop people to acquire them. If you are not winning them, raise salary levels. Commoditization as a success strategy for business is over.

Your job is to ensure they can effectively collaborate & that you’ll engage their experience & partnership. Wouldn’t it be great to help them achieve their next merit or salary increase or promotion sooner?

This is the future of work

Want to learn more? Watch the webinar replay on Talent Acceleration from Workforce Magazine about ramping up #talent after hire.

Accelerate Performance

Why Your Company Needs a Talent Acceleration Strategy

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Having a Talent Acceleration Strategy in place for skills development is now a critical need for every organization. Maintaining growth and profitability in a competitive global environment requires an agile competitive workforce that performs at full capacity and an organization that can quickly close skills gaps.

Why? The entire job market is in flux and shifting. Let’s look at the numbers for the US labour market. Currently there are 6-6.2 million open jobs currently. The employment rate is 4.1%. 5% is considered full employment. And approximately 900K jobs are unfulfilled month to month.

Many vacancies are going unfilled for too long and often the ideal talent and skill mix is hard to find. At the same time, job seekers will tell you that its equally difficult at their end.


A Talent Acceleration Strategy is an organization wide approach to accelerating the skill and productivity level of new hires and existing staff. This enables you to hire into specific roles at an underfill level and rapidly accelerate them to full performance. This saves valuable time and contributes to enabling staff to generate profitability sooner. It also makes your firm a talent magnet because job seekers are actively looking for ways to grow their skills and be successful.

Have you calculated the actual daily costs and productivity losses of leaving jobs unfilled? The numbers are significantly large. Performance support functions, like training and HR, tend to focus on different metrics.

This misses a large opportunity for contribution. Attaining fully productive staff 30-50% faster, which is a typical return when the right methodology is used, yields enormous value at the front end and even more value on implementation.

The actual value of implementing a Talent Acceleration Strategy can easily escalate into millions. (Download our Speed-to-Profitability Cost Savings Spreadsheet below)

As these funds are already being spent, implementing a Talent Acceleration Program will enable you to turn a hidden loss into a profitable return for both people and business.

Managers, executives and HR leaders are always looking for innovative solutions. This is one solution that will help you drive value in your organization.



Accelerate Performance

3 Ways Middle Managers & Executives Can Accelerate Performance Impact

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managers meeting

Are you a middle manager looking to influence and accelerate performance impact in your organization?

Or a senior executive wanting to drive vision forward into new markets?

There are good reasons look for internal solutions and better ways to do this.

Many value gains for businesses and organizations are buried inside the way you organize and do business already. Uncovering these and knowing how to position your performance processes so they deliver increased value will drive major gains.

Here are 3 ways to uncover value in your enterprise and organization.

1.) One of the overlooked areas is the way your organization drives and delivers performance. Are you getting people up to speed in the shortest possible time? If not, you are building in costs and missing out in profits and related gains.

Our experience shows that most companies have an opportunity to accelerate performance by 30-50% for key job functions and critical roles.

Though profitability gains will vary from organization to organization, the numbers are quite high, from thousands to millions, depending on how many days and how many staff are affected.

This hidden area is one of the best ways to tap additional profitability from accelerating performance and capability.

2.) Do you have action-based processes in place to drive and accelerate performance? If not, you’re probably paying too much to train people and getting too little KPI value in return.

Keeping people in the classroom while they are learning is a trade off between maintaining some productivity and zero results. The more actionable your performance process is, the more easily you will be able to translate learning into measurable KPI’s.

Training costs of classroom based and e-learning approaches can cost 20-100 times more for less productivity. This is a good reason for any organization to evaluate it’s training approaches and implement action-based strategies.

3.) Do you have internal career Success Paths in place to encourage both lateral and horizontal mobility? If not, you are probably seeing a decline in your retention rate, and missing opportunities to develop your talent base in a way that encourages their investment in your organization.

Retention rate is the highest hidden talent costs in your organization. The cost of retraining one of your key talents is generally 1.5 times their annual salary. Add to this the time and cost to source someone new, acclimatize them to your culture and perform well in their function and the productivity loss from the day they leave until they achieve full productivity, and costs go up from there.

Compared to having great internal development and mobility strategies that retain them, losing great talent is extremely costly and affects your corporate performance and results.

Taking action on any one of these 3 areas is a winning strategy that will help you deliver better performance and results.



Why Capability Problems Are Hard to Recognize

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Why aren’t capability easily problems identified? Because they can look like so many other things. Slipping sales, inconsistent management, turnover rates, increasing error rates, a need for retraining and time slippages due to rework; all of these are evidence of a capability problem.

KPI results will probably show a decline, but senior management could find it difficult to isolate the cause, and instead will usually play a guessing game where there’s a 50% chance they are half right. And even when they recognize a problem, the implementation solution usually needs to be driven by other staff, such as, HR, training, internal consultants and managers who may not be able to implement cross functional solutions.

Because managers are interest-driven they will push for resources to address what they believe is the problem. The result is like putting nails in a dam. On the surface it looks like it’s working until the dam starts to crack.

Training people can’t usually diagnose this because managing the organization and its larger metrics are typically beyond their scope. They focus on specific performance issues and may not have an effective way to deal with cross functional issues. Most of the time they’re busy developing prioritized training and materials.

HR & OD people are often more concerned with people and organizational fit, not cause, because cause is a management focus. Most don’t have the operations, management or management consulting experience to skillfully diagnose cause or implement a cross functional management solution.

The people who could correctly diagnose this problem may not exist in your company. Sometimes a Chief Learning Officer with a senior management mandate who has had exposure and experience with implementing whole capability methodologies can pinpoint this, but not all companies have them. The companies that have them may not have one with this kind of experience. The good news is that, once capability problems are identified, cost effective solutions can be implemented often within weeks and months.

Once a capability problem is diagnosed, Velocified can provide an implementation solution through Talent Acceleration and business improvement. The results typically far exceed the cost of the solution.Add to this the strategic performance edge of your new capabilities and here are some of the results and benefits you’ll likely experience.

The benefits?

KPI’s will improve, sometimes drastically
Capability and unit performance will improve
Staff turnover and engagement rates will increase
Unique multipliers will appear. This could range from improved stock performance to market share increases, improvements in quality, service delivery and problem solving on several fronts. As these are unique to every company, we don’t know what they are until they show up during implementation.
Management support will get easier and clearer
Custom management coaching program
Staffing and training costs will decrease

At Velocified, we specialize in accelerating performance. When your staff get up to speed faster, they are able to perform sooner. This means your business will be more successful sooner.

Get your copy of the Talent Acceleration Guide