People are what we apply to Training


It came to me in a dream.

We speak and design as if we’re assigning training to people. But that’s not what we’re doing at all, it’s really the other way around. Coming from the Instructional Design side of things, I had it backwards for the previous 20 years.

We assign people to training.

The “shoulds” that we create with learning have nothing to do with the content and everything to do with the people.

Nothing is ever mandatory on its own, it can’t be. Information exists, skills exist, certifications exist. Then we hire the people and direct them to these things. Or we find the people to market & communicate these things too.

Be it liability for non-compliance or measurable impact of performance improvement or simple profit/loss, it is the people that create these risks & gains. Managing content instead of people leads to a very avoidable set of mental & technological traps.

Perhaps this isn’t news to you. I’m just catching up, or rather the smarter part of me is letting the dumber part of me in on what it probably knew all along.