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like any other business process, it is part of a larger system, part of a longer chain, and should always be considered within the larger system context. Despite tools and concepts intro-

duced by Dr Donald Kirkpatrick, Dr Jack Phillips, Prof Robert O Brinker- hoff and others, learning transfer is still only measured sporadically. And despite the common-sense argument that training not used is money wasted, the tools and activities that would ensure a successful learning transfer process are either not used at all or, if they are, they’re just superficial and inadequate.

Why do we avoid it?

‘Te elephant in the room’ is an important and obvious topic, which everyone present is aware of, but which is not discussed, as such discussion is uncomfortable. Learning transfer does seem to be

the elephant in many rooms I have been in where a training programme is under discussion. When I point at the elephant, there is usually an acknowl- edgement of its existence, followed by a slide back into the comforting rut of course delivery, “Yeah, we need to do something about that, but right now we need to focus on the logistics for all the delegates from the EMEA region.” Tis elephant is big, and impossible

to overlook. Te case for proactively driving the learning transfer process is self-evident, and yet so many people choose to behave as if the elephant is non-existent. Why? If we look at some of the reasons, we can start to under- stand how to change the conversation.

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I never really thought about it. Elephant? Really? Where? No one else is mentioning it.

learning’, or that would fall into the ‘10’ of the 70:20:10 learning model. Learning transfer following a

training course has several phases, or links in the chain, and each link must be done well for the process to work from end to end. A chain is only as strong as its weakest link. Te first chain link is the learning that must take place in the classroom.

Te second is the ‘transfer’ of that learning into the training delegate’s workflow. Te third link is the translation of that learning into new behaviours that are beneficial within the context of that workflow. Tink of the learning transfer chain as a business process, and like any other business process, it should be measured in order to manage it. Also

L&D says their job is to train people, or deliver other formal learning. “You asked for training; you got it. Job done. Our responsibility finishes at the end of the course. Learning transfer is not our responsibility.”

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Management says it’s not their responsibility either. Tey say that their job is operational excellence, not staff development. “L&D should be doing staff development.”


Even if we mandate that it is a management responsibility, managers couldn’t do it effectively anyway because they don’t have

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