A number of polls have described a dismal level of motivation in many organizations. Eighty-four percent of workers in a variety of industries admit that they could work much harder. About 50% confess that they only work as hard as they must to keep their jobs. In the typical work setting, individuals contribute an average of about 30% less when they are on a team than they do when working by themselves—a phenomenon known as “social loafing.” The culture of most organizations rests on the implicit view that, “people are paid for a job, so they should be motivated to work,” yet the most recent analysis of research on work incentives found that salary was the least motivating factor in all work settings (Condly, Clark, & Stolovitch, 2003). So, efforts to eliminate things that kill motivation have a huge potential to increase performance.

While effective training has been found to result in about a 20% increase in job performance, efforts to increase work motivation produce at least as much, and often exceeded the impact of training (Clark, 2003; Clark & Estes, 2001). Knowledge and skills give us the capacity to work smarter and more effectively. Yet, people with knowledge and skills often choose not to use what they know, or they lack interest in learning new things. Motivation provides us with the focus, enthusiasm, persistence, determination, and effort needed to go beyond what we’ve accomplished in the past. It gets us started, helps us persist in the face of barriers and distractions, and encourages us to be “mindful” and work smarter. As Calvin Coolidge, one of our past U.S. presidents, suggested:

“Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan, ‘Press on,’ has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.”

So, what defeats persistence, and what works to increase it? Some organizations have found that removing “motivation killers” is a very inexpensive first step. Here are 10 conditions found in many organizations that often damage work motivation. Most of them are easy to eliminate or change. Do they exist in your organization’s culture or work processes?

The “10 Most Wanted” Motivation Killers

  1. Telling Lies. There are no innocent lies when the misinformation reflects a topic or situation that is important to stakeholders in an organization. Trust is difficult to earn and very easy to lose. We must tell as much of the truth as possible and shut up.
  2. Making Prejudiced Decisions Based on Stereotypes. In our diverse work settings, the exciting mix of nationalities, cultures, and race are terrific opportunities for creative ideas and for negative, hurtful prejudice. We must avoid the perception of prejudice in performance reviews, selection decisions, and even in jokes and informal exchanges. It is best to work to convince everyone that they have an equal chance to succeed and then do our best to make it happen.
  3. Expressing Constant Pessimism, Cool Detachment, and Negativity. Depressed people enjoy saying and hearing depressing things. Negativity is sometimes fashionable, but it is a motivation killer. No matter how dismal the situation, cautious optimism and positive expectations will always be more productive than pessimism.
  4. Focusing on the Facts of a Situation and not on People’s Beliefs or Perception of the Facts. What people believe and perceive in any situation controls their motivation and their behavior. Confronting people with your version of “the facts” is simply not enough to change their values. Start by trying to understand others’ values, reasons, and expectations.
  5. Setting Vague Performance Goals. When work goals are vague, people substitute their own goals or assume that “anything goes.” Provide goals that are clear, concrete, and challenging.
  6. Being a Hypocrite. The most motivating leaders and mentors are those whose values, statements, and personal behavior are consistent.
  7. Making Unnecessary Work Rules. Here are some examples of rules that alienate and de-motivate: Tell people they can’t decorate their work space in open office settings because someone thinks that pictures of people’s families wrecks the visual aesthetics the organization is trying to achieve. Don’t let people listen to music while they work even if it does not interfere with their work. Make rules to let people know who is in charge.
  8. Assuming that Others are “Like Me”. Just because something motivates one person (no matter how powerful or successful the person), it most likely will not motivate everyone else. If we want to know what motivates people, we should ask them what they value and listen carefully until we understand it from their point of view.
  9. When Frustrated, Getting Angry at Everyone and Expressing It Forcefully. While it feels “natural” for some people to express anger loudly and aggressively, it only affords a very small, short-term gain (through intimidation) but can lead to longer term motivational difficulty with people. Consider learning to delay expressing your anger in work settings. Say something like, “that IS frustrating” and then when you are alone, break something cheap while you shout at the furniture.
  10. Catching People Screwing Up and Pointing It Out to Them. The more we focus feedback on the fact that a person or team made a mistake or failed to reach a goal, the less motivated they are to remedy the problem and the more long lasting the negative impact. We must catch people succeeding and remind them of past successes. If they fail, we should focus our coaching on developing or revising their strategies in ways that will help them succeed and ask them to work harder.

Clark, D. (2003, August). How effective is training? A new summary of the past 40 years of training field research and evaluation. PerformanceXpress.

Clark, R. & Estes, F. (2001). Turning research into results: A guide to selecting the right performance solutions. Atlanta: CEP Press.

Condly, S., Clark, R.E., & Stolovitch, H.D. (2003). The effects of incentives on workplace performance: A meta-analytic review of research studies. Performance Improvement Quarterly, 16(3).

Dick Clark is the principal of Atlantic Training Inc., a company that offers consulting on training design and performance improvement strategies. He is also a professor of Educational Psychology and Technology in the Rossier School of Education at the University of Southern California where he serves as the mentor of USC’s doctoral program emphasis in Human Performance at Work. Dick received the Thomas F. Gilbert Award for Outstanding Professional Achievement from ISPI last year. He may be reached at clark@usc.edu.


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So, what defeats persistence, and what works to increase it?

by Carol Haig, CPT and Roger Addison, CPT

During a rare lull in his busy day, we caught up with Jim Hill to capture his predictions for the next two to three years. Over the course of the past year, Jim has served as the Director of Dynamic Pricing for Sun Microsystems and, more recently, as the CEO of ProofPoint Systems, Inc., a global provider of software and services that help organizations achieve exemplary performance. Jim is the immediate past president of ISPI and may be reached at jim.hill@proofpoint.net.

Top Three Predictions
As part of the fallout from recent business scandals and the heightened emphasis on accurate representation of corporate information, business leaders will demand the truth from their performance consultants and expect to see solid evidence of results achieved and promises honored.

Our profession will shift from its human performance technology (HPT) focus to a business performance technology (BPT) focus. The HPT brand will remain, but our mindset will be increasingly business-centric, as we work to improve the performance of the business, not just the performance of the workers.

HPT leaders will take on greater roles in the businesses where they work as they realize that to effect real change, they must operate in lines of business rather than in staff support functions.

Why These Predictions
Consider this: Fortune 200 companies spend US$300-900 million per year on training. They spend additional millions on organizational design, incentive management, business re-engineering, and other improvement processes. Yet, in the case of training, less than 10% of what is delivered finds its way to on-the-job performance improvement. This means a waste of US$270-800 million per year.

As part of their quest for truth, organizations want to stop the waste. They are tired of guessing at solutions. They want to be able to look at an opportunity for performance improvement, determine what it will take to capture it, and get results that net a real return on investment.

These times call for a shift from HPT to BPT. When a solution enables workers to perform better, generates revenue, and improves quality, we are considered successful, and the results are invaluable to the fortunate organization and its stakeholders. However, for HPT practitioners to make this kind of difference requires more than a nodding acquaintance with the organization’s business. As performance improvement professionals, at a minimum, we must be able to answer these three basic questions:

  • What were the organization’s revenues last year?
  • Who are our top three customers?
  • Who are our top three competitors?

Jim suggests that right now few HPT’ers can do this, leaving us without a place at the executive decision table.

Each of us must determine if we are willing to take on a greater role by inserting ourselves into the business of our organizations and assuming the same level of risk as the lines of business do. Are we willing to learn to apply business thinking to business performance improvement? Can we reduce duplication of effort and redundant job responsibilities in our own groups? Can we cut costs, increase our speed of delivery to our customers, and establish common thought, language, and processes for improved efficiencies and a cohesive branding of the products and services we deliver? Some of these suggestions and decisions will be unpopular, but when we can deliver on them we will raise the bar for HPT and truly contribute to our organizations’ results.

How Organizations Will Be Different
In organizations that understand the value and power of HPT, we will see structures shifting to support a rising level of business integrity. Some organizations will form networks of business performance improvement teams with a central distribution point. One team might be responsible for conducting or overseeing analysis projects. A different and appropriately skilled team might then take the findings and recommendations from the analysis team to develop the solution(s). This division of labor will prevent one of today’s current difficulties, where the analysis results in the solution the customer originally requested, regardless of its appropriateness.

One way to align effectively with business results in this new environment is for the HPT practitioner to recast his or her role from that of maintenance engineer to one as design engineer. Most requests received by performance consultants are for “fix it” projects because something is not working as it is supposed to. In the scheme of organizational operations, these tend to be mostly low-level efforts that equate to a building maintenance person being called to fix the plumbing.

A better situation is to have a seat at the building design table so we can affect the layout, flows, and operations before the system is badly built. In an organizational context, this role has a much greater impact and considerably higher payoff for both the business and the performance technologist.

HPT, with its focus on principles and practices rather than on models, will be utilized consistently across savvy organizations. Shifting analogies from architecture to medicine, Jim notes that emphasizing diagnosis before prescription, together with consistent HPT standards, will reduce our risk of “malpractice.” Practitioners will quickly and accurately identify business performance improvement issues and opportunities and lead the way to solutions, via specialists, that produce valued results.

Implications for ProofPoint Systems
Jim points to an HPT history lesson he learned from Roger Addison who tells us that our field has been driven by interventions, not by analysis. If we develop and implement solutions without an objective analysis, we run a high risk of failure and can harm the organization’s health.

To illustrate, Jim tells the story of having a cold and searching the medicine cabinet for a particular remedy. When he doesn’t find it, he looks for another that might substitute, such as an over-the-counter medication or maybe the remnants of an old prescription. When his second choice is not effective, he goes back to the medicine cabinet for a third option. Jim continues to try different medications until something helps his cold—much as organizations do when prescribed performance improvement solutions fail.

In Jim’s example, it is unclear if the “speedball” of solutions actually helped or if the cold went away on its own. What is very clear is that we’ve been overmedicated, which is costly and sometimes dangerous.

To guard against these events, Jim and his ProofPoint team educate their clients about the value of separating analysis from solution design and delivery. Established as a diagnostic organization with the capability of referring clients to the right solution specialists, ProofPoint’s advisory model and the software applications they are developing ensure the integrity of the results they produce.

If you have any predictions about the future of HPT that you feel would be of interest to the PerformanceXpress readership, please contact Carol Haig, CPT, at carolhaig@earthlink.net or Roger Addison, CPT, at roger@ispi.org.



When I was a junior supervisor in the aerospace business, we had some major performance problems. So we set up—you guessed it—training programs. We used multi-media, experienced instructors, friendly classrooms, objectives; we did everything by the “training book.”

People still did not perform. So, we spent more time and money. We had instructors smile more and look really organized, and still people did not perform. Frustrated, I sought the advice of an old-timer who told me we were focusing on the training and not on the performance. And worse, he noted, that even if I had the training right, I was not aligning the training with mission accomplishment and safety. I was looking at the pieces and not the whole. In fact, he told me, “When you just look at the pieces of a system and not at the whole system, it is like looking at trees and not knowing you are in a forest.”

I was shocked. I thought if you looked after all of the pieces, the whole would take care of itself. I was guilty of looking at trees and ignoring the forest and the environment in which the forest nested.

Getting It Right
It was then that my conversion began, and with it came inflicted personal pain. I was now out of the “in-group.” It meant realizing that a “systems” approach looked at the parts and risked ignoring the whole; focusing on trees and not the forest, nor the environment. I became convinced that a system approach was the umbrella we were missing. Systems were about trees. “System” started with the forest and its sustainability (Kaufman, Oakley-Browne, Watkins, & Leigh, 2003). This approach was neither conventional nor popular. In today’s HPT world, it is analogous to asserting that a focus on “the business case” isn’t enough; it doesn’t look to adding societal value; bigger trees but certainly not the forest. But how do you get people to look at both the forest and the trees?

Some Analogies
Most of us rarely visit a forest. On the other hand, we see trees daily. And we have more trees to look at than we do forests. Trees are near to us, forests are far away. We seem to love the one we are near.

Maybe not a great analogy. How about another? Steve Duncan at East Carolina University introduced this one to me. In football, we focus on individual positions: quarterback, center, tacklers, and receivers. We keep track of each one’s stats and send the best of the best to the All Star game. Each position is like a “tree” in our trees-and-forests analogy.

We train each position, praise them, and show TV highlight clips of them. As if the other members of the team did not matter. Mistake. For any team to be successful, each “tree” must perform his or her task perfectly, as well as perform together with a common purpose (winning each game and the championship with no injuries). Now, let’s shift to the performance improvement professions conventional wisdom.

When we go to workshops, take courses from institutions, and attend conventions, we focus on the “trees of our business.” It seems natural. People pay to learn about trees. They insist on “tree-oriented” presentations, and we provide them. They call them “practical tools that can be used right away.” So we pander to that, and more and more of our popular programs are about the trees of our business: instructional design, computer assisted learning, the Internet, learning objects, motivation, distance learning, etc. We provide trees, and people go away happy. Don’t ever talk at one of these about forests. Ever. Not good for feedback ratings or being invited back. To do so risks poor reviews. Trees are “in,” forests are “out.”

This is a shame. For, maintaining the focus on the pieces of the puzzle and not on the whole, demonstrates what Peter Drucker (1973) has told us for some time, “We are getting better and better at doing that which should not be done at all.” We can be very good at one or two of the tools of our trade, but we will never be successful unless we integrate those individual skills and contributions into the whole. We should not focus on improving performance on tasks alone unless we also make sure that each task aligns with what the entire organization uses, does, produces, delivers, and the value it adds for internal and external stakeholders.

What Does this Mean for Successful Organizations and Successful People?
To be successful, individually and together, we have to stop just looking at trees—only parts of the whole—and pay attention to the whole. We have to maintain our focus on the entire organization and the organization’s external clients.

The next time you go to a workshop or professional conference to develop your tools (such as learning objects, computer assisted learning, e-learning, motivation, needs analysis, evaluation), also expand your professional toolkit to include the forest and environment, the whole. Demand both learning opportunities about trees and forests. If you develop both, you will achieve individual and organizational success. If you don’t, you will just be part of the masses that don’t understand that thriving forests must include thriving trees.

Drucker, P.F. (1973). Management: Tasks, responsibilities, practices. New York: Harper & Row.

Kaufman, R, Oakley-Browne, H., Watkins, R., & Leigh, D. (2003). Strategic planning for success: Aligning people, performance, and payoffs. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass/Pfeiffer.

Roger Kaufman, PhD, CPT, is a past-president of ISPI and has participated in every level of the Society for decades. Roger is professor emeritus, Educational Psychology and Learning Systems, and served as the director, Office for Needs Assessment and Planning (1978-2003), all at the Florida State University. In addition, he is Director of Roger Kaufman & Associates. He has authored 35 books and more than 230 articles on strategic thinking and planning, needs assessment, evaluation, and organizational and individual performance accomplishment. Roger may be reached at rkaufman@nettally.com.


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To be successful, individually and together, we have to stop just looking at trees—only parts of the whole—and pay attention to the whole.


In the January issue of PerformanceXpress, Joseph P. Sener, PE, Vice President for Business Excellence, Baxter Healthcare, spoke with ISPI President Guy Wallace about his take on the various disciplines. This month he talks to Guy about “Lean” and Six Sigma and their compatibility with Human Performance Technology (HPT). In addition, Joseph gives readers a peek into the panel discussion he will facilitate on Thursday, April 22, at ISPI’s 42nd Annual International Performance Improvement Conference & Exposition

What is “Lean” from an improvement perspective?

“Lean” is a particular set of tools and toolkit that is designed to reduce the waste and reduce the lead-time for any given process, whether in manufacturing, or for performance evaluations, or to close the financial books annually.

You use lean tools, including techniques such as, “value stream mapping,” to weed out the waste from huge amounts of decision time, or recycled decisions, wait-time, or work-in-process inventory. These may all sound like manufacturing terms, but you find these same process issues throughout an entire organization. Lean is actually “Lean-Six Sigma” and is one of the tool sets available to shorten up lead-times and eliminate waste.

So, what then is Six Sigma, from an improvement perspective?

To get to a truly optimized system, you’ve got to do two things. First, stabilize the system to get the variability out, which gets results measurements much tighter, grouped around the mean or average of the process. The Six Sigma tools help to achieve “reduction of variability.”

Once there, you want to move the mean to a more optimum position, typically using the Lean techniques to reduce cycle time and waste in the current state processes. The two tools sets of Lean and Six Sigma create a strong tool set for improvement.

What is your experience in either improvement approach?

The actual tool sets have been around for a long time. I was exposed to them early in my career as I tried to determine what was going to be most sensitive in the designs for an item I was creating for installation at the nuclear power plant. So, I’ve had a lot of background in it.

For over 10 years, I’ve used these tools and techniques as a consultant and in-house to drive significant improvement, such as 8:1 and 10:1 value improvement as measured in stock prices.

Are both Lean and Six Sigma compatible with HPT? If so, how?

HPT and “Lean-Six Sigma” are compatible on two different levels. One level is in providing the organization’s processes with humans that have the core competencies necessary to the processes. As a specialist in HPT, you have to know how you are going to get those competencies into place to best meet the needs and constraints of the organization.

Another level is using those tools to improve the HPT processes themselves. Some of the leading companies in the Lean-Six Sigma world have had tens of millions of dollars in improvement returns generated in less than a year through human performance improvement in their HR organizations.

What will attendees at the Tampa conference get from your keynote panel discussion?

This session will bring together speakers who represent aspects of the Baldrige model. Our goal is to show the breadth and the linkage of the human variable within the Baldrige model, and how the human variable is managed and contributes to the performance of the organization per that model.

HPT plays a significant role in managing and operating the Baldrige business model. Conference attendees need to understand that potential if their organizations are following the Baldrige model, or some adaptation of it.

The panel tentatively includes a representative from the first hospital to win the Baldrige Award, and one of the leading thinkers in the Six Sigma world. It should be a very interesting session and hopefully will connect the dots for the attendees between HPT and the National Malcolm Baldrige Award.



I have always been fascinated by Carl Binder’s work on building fluent performance. I have taken a small component of this area and (with the help of my associates) created a web game called CAFÉ (Computer Assisted Fluency Exercise).

CAFÉ provides guided practice on paired associates (or multiple discriminations as we used to call them in the good old days of Programmed Instruction) such as recalling airport codes, postal abbreviations, French words, chemical symbols, and product features.

As an experimental validation of CAFÉ, I memorized the sequence of playing cards in a shuffled deck. If you call out a number between 1 and 52, I will tell you the name of the card at that location. If you specify a playing card, I will tell exactly where that card will be found in deck. Obviously, this is not of any great value—unless you want to show off or perform mind-reading tricks.

This month, we have a sample game that helps you explore CAFÉ. The content of the game is a list of IANA (Internet Assigned Numbers Authority) country codes. Similar to postal abbreviations for US states, these are the official two-letter codes used on the Internet to represent different countries of the world. (They are used in email and web addresses.)

When you start the game, you will see names of different countries flashing across the display area. Your task is to type the two-letter abbreviation (simple task, eh?) of the country. When you do this, the name of the country will disappear and your score will go up. During each round of play, you will be presented with a random set of 10 countries in a random order. The maximum score you can earn is 100. To avoid frustrating you too much, we use only 75 countries (out of the complete list of 243).

You can play the game repeatedly. But be careful: Just like any other digital game, you may get addicted and forget your staff meeting. Sooner or later, however, you may have mastered all of the 75 country codes and find the task to be fairly simple and boring. At this stage, you can jump up to the second level of play where the game is played the same way as before except the country names flash across the display area at a faster rate. When your performance has reached this level of fluency, you can move on to the third level. But enough talking. Click here to play the game.



When writing for publication, we can strengthen our work by using sources effectively. When we refer to, paraphrase, or quote the ideas or research of others, we need to cite the sources of our information. By so doing, we show respect for our fellow professionals.

There are a number of very good reasons for citing the work and ideas of others. First and foremost, very few of us have original thoughts and brand new ideas. Mostly through analysis, synthesis, projection, and re-contextualizing, we build upon the ideas of others. We build upon an existing body of thought and knowledge. By citing the work of others, we demonstrate to readers that we are on top of the body of professional literature pertaining to our work. Second, by providing easy access to the sources we use to build our ideas and arguments, readers can check the credibility of the sources we used to see if they agree with our interpretations. Third, we are enabling readers to advance their knowledge by exposing them to the ideas, principles, theories, and findings we cite in building our ideas and arguments. Collectively, these three reasons for citing the work of others help us to sharpen our own thinking and provide credibility to our work.

Plagiarizing negatively impacts the credibility of our work. Plagiarism is a relatively simple concept. If you use the words, ideas, or information from another source, with no citation, you are plagiarizing. According to Harris, “Plagiarism occurs when an information source is not properly credited” (2002, p. 15). “The key element of this principle is that an author does not present the work of another as if it were his or her own work. This can extend to ideas as well as written words” (American Psychological Association, 2001, p. 349). You must cite words you quote, words you summarize, words you paraphrase, and the ideas, interpretations, opinions, and conclusions of others. If you use data, drawings, photographs, graphics, or video sources of others, you must cite them. In addition, you must cite the unique ideas, apt phrases, and structure or sequencing of facts, ideas, or arguments of others (Harris, 2002).

You need not cite your own words, ideas, solutions to a problem, or unique concepts. Nor do you have to cite your own data, graphs, drawings, photographs, and so on (Harris, 2002). In citing outside information, what is often termed as common knowledge does not need to be cited. “Common knowledge includes whatever an educated person would be expected to know or could locate in an ordinary encyclopedia. It represents the kind of general information found in many sources and remembered by many people” (Harris, 2002, p. 19). Examples of common knowledge include common facts, common sayings, and information that are easy to observe.

Sometimes, people confuse plagiarism with copyright infringement. They are different. “A plagiarist is a person who poses as the originator of words he did not write, ideas he did not conceive, and/or facts he did not discover. A copyright infringer is a person who makes unauthorized use of material protected by copyright” (Fishman, 2003, p. 12/3). If one takes credit for the work he or she copies, and the work is protected by copyright, that individual would be both a plagiarist and a copyright infringer. Below are three examples to help clarify plagiarism and copyright infringement.

Example 1: Pat, a consultant, finds and uses in a workshop an obscure presentation given by an instructor from graduate school. The instructor’s presentation is in the public domain. Pat has not committed copyright infringement. However, Pat has committed plagiarism if she doesn’t give credit to the original writer.

Example 2: The publisher Lee, Kim, Sons, and Daughters publishes a paperback version of Performance-Based Instruction by Brethower and Smalley without permission. They have committed copyright infringement, not plagiarism, given they did not pose as authors of the book.

Example 3: Dr. Knowitall, a famous performance technologist, copies a paper written by a colleague and publishes it under his own name in Performance Improvement. On the front of the copied paper, the colleague had his name with a date and a copyright symbol (©). Dr. Knowitall is both a plagiarist and a copyright infringer.

Typically, authors are not sued for plagiarism. However, college professors and journalists have lost their jobs. And, students have been dismissed from school. Copyright infringers can be sued. A plagiarist can also be sued by his or her publisher for breach of contract or fraud if an author signs an agreement indicating that the work submitted for publication is not in the public domain (Fishman, 2003). So, there are very practical reasons for learning about plagiarism and copyright infringement.

However, in my judgment, the most compelling reason to properly use citations in your work as a professional performance technologist is not esoteric or to avoid litigation. It has to do with credibility: your credibility and the credibility of our profession. Human performance technology (HPT) is an eclectic field of professional practice. HPT borrows from and builds upon associated disciplines and fields of professional practice. Most of the major ideas and practices in HPT have evolved from an array of disciplines and fields. Several ideas and principles of HPT are adaptations from other fields. As such, it is critical that in our own work we show respect for our fellow professionals and help our readers to understand the derivation of our reasoned ideas and arguments. In short, citing the sources that underlie and support our ideas and thoughts provides context, strengthens our arguments, and makes our writing more interesting. Over the years, I have found that writing with sources has helped me to develop my thinking and analytic skills.

American Psychological Association. (2001). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (5th ed.). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Fishman, S. (2003). The copyright handbook: How to protect & use written works (7th ed.). Berkeley, CA: Nolo Press.

Harris, R.A. (2002). Using sources effectively: Strengthening your writing and avoiding plagiarism. Los Angeles, CA: Pyrczak Publishing.


It can be easy to take for granted
that we are an international organization. In our work, at our conferences, through our conversations, performance technologists collaborate across geographical, cultural, and national boundaries. Our purpose with I-Spy is to reveal how the Internet can be a powerful tool to facilitate this collaboration, and the recognition of our common goals.

Quick recap: Every month, three sites, one theme. While far from comprehensive, hopefully these sites will spark readers to look further and expand views about human performance technology (HPT). Please keep in mind that any listing is for informational purposes only and does not indicate an endorsement either by the International Society for Performance Improvement or me.

These are the general categories I use for the sites featured:

  1. E-Klatch: Links to professional associations, research, and resources that can help refine and expand our views of HPT through connections with other professionals and current trends
  2. HPT@work: Links to job listings, career development, volunteer opportunities, and other resources for applying your individual skills
  3. I-Candy: Links to sites that are thought provoking, enjoyable, and refreshing to help manage the stresses and identify new ideas for HPT

The theme for this month’s column is Women at Work. On March 8, 2003, the United Nations commemorates International Women’s Day, a day celebrated around the world. The challenge for performance technologists in global businesses is to understand and enhance the performance of all workers in the context of specific cultural norms and economic pressures. This month we explore some sites that address this challenge as it relates to women at work. Together, we can strive to create workplaces that respect the history and success of men and women at work in our pursuit of collaborative organizational excellence—notwithstanding Hymenopteran fratricide.

We are in good company, as well as good companies. ISPI is listed on the Professional Associations links page of Seekingsuccess.com, a job search preparation site. Many of the professional associations listed here provide information on women at work—including the Women’s New Media Alliance/Wise-Women’s article Have Women Websters Achieved Equality On the Internet?, the National Association for Female Executive’s Top 30 Companies for Executive Women, and the history of the Women’s Professional Rodeo Association, where we learn that in 1999, with over $245,000 in earnings for the year, “World Champion Barrel Racer Sherry Cervi would take home more money in a single event than any other contestant competing at the finals—male or female.” Now that’s some serious human (and equine) performance. The Seekingsuccess.com site also offers a free resume generator, helpful articles, and other resources to aid in career development.

After you’re through celebrating National Women’s History Month in March, you can set aside EqualPay Day, April 20, 2004, to consider how women have been performing financially compared to men at work. You can access resources at Business and Professional Women/USA, where they note: “Due to the gender wage gap, nationally [in the United States] women earn 77 cents to each dollar paid to male counterparts. Over a working lifetime, this wage disparity costs the average American woman an estimated $500,000.” This site also includes career resources, legislative activity, and upcoming events.

So how long have females been at work? Well, at least 200 million years for certain insects! To view ancient examples of some membrane-winged creatures, often living in hives descended from a single queen, buzz on over to FossilMuseum.net’s Hymenoptera Fossil Insect Gallery. Here we learn the somewhat unsettling task analysis that “Female worker bees will often kill their brothers giving favor to their sisters with whom they share 75% of their DNA.” If viewing bugs in amber does not suit you, this comprehensive site also links to galleries for ancient sharks and stingrays, Russian trilobites, as well as a variety of information about biology and evolution.

Join us next month as we continue to “e”-volve our skills in the online honeycombs to bring you more Inter-nectar of note. Until April, enjoy your travels in the cybergarden.

When he is not Internet trawling for ISPI, Todd Packer can be found improving business, non-profit, and individual performance through research, training, and innovation coaching as Principal Consultant of Todd Packer and Associates based in Cleveland, Ohio. He may be reached at tp@toddpacker.com.



The votes have been tallied,
and the following candidates have been elected to serve as members of ISPI’s 2004-2006 Board of Directors.

Sivasailam “Thiagi” Thiagarajan,

Bernárdez, CPT

Andrea Moore,

Marilyn Spatz,

The following members of the 2003-2004 Board retain their seats: Donald T. Tosti, CPT (2004-05 President), Barbara H. Gough, CPT, James A. Pershing, CPT, and Richard D. Battaglia, CAE (ex officio). A special thanks to the departing Board members: Guy W. Wallace, CPT, Clare Elizabeth Carey, EdD, CPT, and Jeanne Farrington, EdD, CPT, for their hard work and dedication to ISPI.



Just imagine… hearing about cutting-edge HPT information before the article is written!

Just imagine…exchanging ideas with the gurus of the HPT field and they listen to you!

Just imagine…walking into a conference session and having the experience of sitting next to the ISPI President!

Just imagine…a newcomer to the HPT field sitting next to you in a session asking YOU a question!

Just imagine…meeting HPT professionals from around the world!

Just imagine…exchanging hints with newly forming chapters in the Chapter Partnership Committee meeting!

Just imagine…

ISPI’s 42nd Annual International Performance Improvement Conference & Exposition is shaping up to be one of the best ever. The theme—Partnering for Performance—is perfectly timed to help us all realize what other disciplines have to offer, and what we have to offer them as HPT professionals. Our world has changed, our corporations have changed, and it is up to us to lead the HPT aspects of those changes as creatively and efficiently as possible. One of the best ways to do this is to attend the conference April 18-23, 2004.

The tracks, forums, and events this year include:

  • Partnering for Performance (the conference theme)
  • Analysis of Needs, Problems, or Opportunities
  • Interventions: Instructional
  • Interventions: Organization Development & Strategic Alignment
  • Interventions: Process or Tool
  • Evaluation and Continuous Improvement
  • Business of HPT
  • The Future of HPT
  • Academic Forum
  • International Forum
  • Cracker Barrel
  • Opening Session
  • Exposition
  • Bookstore
  • Closing Banquet
  • Got Results?
  • Performance Gallery

Just imagine, if you aren’t coming to the ISPI conference in Tampa this year, none of these things can happen!

Just imagine…hearing new ideas from the best in the field and productively fulfilling your professional obligations.

Just imagine…experiencing how successful HPT partnering can be!

Just imagine…knowing how other chapters have conquered your chapter issues!

Now just imagine yourself in Tampa. We’ll be there! Register today!

A recent publication, Metrics, by Jay Cross of the Internet Time Group, presents an opportunity to comment on some current issues in measurement and evaluation. The author, who happens to be an old friend, is an entertaining and wide-ranging thinker (some might say Renaissance Man), and his book is noteworthy in part because of its unconventional form: a constantly updated eBook available for purchase online. Jay’s history in financial services, training, marketing, and a whole host of cerebral pursuits has left him most recently in the world of e-Learning, where he has become something of a pundit.

While I don’t agree with everything in Metrics, I recommend it because it’s a quick and enjoyable read, because it contains valuable references and links, and mostly because it challenges us to think outside many of the current ruts in measurement and evaluation.

Things I Like about Metrics
Here are some of Jay’s key points along with my comments:

  • “Metrics are measurements that matter.” With this sentence, he challenges us to measure results that our clients agree are important and to look for large valuable improvements. He adds, “Don’t fritter away time on the small stuff.”

  • “Start with business problems and work backwards.” He later adds that we should “focus on process not on behavior.” These comments point in the direction of our best strategy for measuring the right things, following Thomas F. Gilbert’s dictum to identify accomplishments, the outputs of processes or of individual jobs that contribute value toward business results. Behavior costs money while accomplishments have value. Following the path from business results back through measured accomplishments will lead to the behavior and improvement strategies that produce worthwhile organizational outcomes.

  • “Forget measurement of value based on cost savings!” As an e-Learning strategy consultant, Jay has probably tired of cost justifications based on saving travel time and expenses. It is critically important that we find ways to use our technologies and interventions to improve outcomes, not simply reduce costs for the same (often mediocre) outcomes.

  • “Time matters.” Whether we’re speaking of time to perform (fluency, productivity), time to achieve benchmark performance (ramp-up), or results over time (revenues, profits), we cannot ignore the time dimension in either our measurement of learning and performance during training or our measurement of desired business results.

  • “Gather baseline data.” While it is easy to interpret this statement as simply that we need a “before” measure to evaluate the worth of our “after” results, the “line” in baseline is very important. To clearly understand the effects of our interventions, we must view current performance in the context of measured levels, trends, and bounce (or variability) over time. We need a series of counts (per minute, per day, per week, or per month) to establish a true baseline so that we can tell whether our interventions or ongoing efforts are changing trends, levels, and/or the “bounce” (variability) of measured outcomes.

  • “You must be able to relate your decisions and choices to the profitability of your organization.” While much of Jay’s discussion focuses on what I call “validation data”—measurement to justify expenditures by showing that programs work—the best measurement systems support ongoing decision-making. This is why I recommend ongoing measurement as feedback to performers and decision-makers, and why I like Timm Esque’s book, Making An Impact, so much.

  • Jay disagrees with much of the current thinking about ROI, suggesting that his book can save you the cost of an ROI workshop. Whether or not this is true, managers would certainly prefer to see how your program improves their specific outcomes beyond a general payback ratio or cost justification. And since some current-day ROI “methods” use subjective estimates of payback rather than direct results measures, we need to question in detail many ROI claims before we accept them.

Things I Don’t Like So Much About Metrics
Lest you think I’m giving my friend a free pass, let me make a few comments about shortcomings.

  • The second half of the book is mostly a justification for e-Learning, something I would have preferred left to a few pages. I recognize that Jay makes his living in this field, but it would be more helpful if the book addressed the general case with a broader set of examples. Moreover, it is inconceivable that even the best e-Learning program will produce optimal results without efforts to improve other factors in a performance system, including expectations, feedback, tools, resources, consequences, and selection.

  • Jay does not discuss what’s a good measure and what’s not. For example, he mentions the limitations of test results as metrics but does not explain that percentage correct is not a measure of performance because it is a dimensionless quantity from which we cannot determine either the count of behavior or accomplishments nor the time required to complete them. He does not point out that the best metrics count things in absolute units (dollars, widgets, gallons, etc.) rather than rating them on subjective scales. Careful application of all his recommendations can still yield meaningless measurement if we fail to adhere to this basic principle.

  • Jay speaks of using both “subjective and objective” data. For me, the term “subjective” means open to wide interpretation or idiosyncratic. What I think he means by “subjective” is measurement of opinion or preference, which can be very objective if we refrain from applying “voodoo math” by summarizing numbers on rating scales of subjective impressions to produce “average” ratings. It is not subjective to say that “20 people out of 45 rated the program as very good and 10 said it was poor”—a quantitative measure of personal opinion that can be safely manipulated within the rules of arithmetic.

I suggest you read Metrics yourself, and discuss it vigorously with your colleagues and clients. I am sure you will find it both entertaining and illuminating.

Dr. Carl Binder is a Senior Partner at Binder Riha Associates, a consulting firm that helps clients improve processes, performance, and behavior to deliver measurable results. He may be reached at CarlBinder@aol.com. For additional articles, visit http://www.binder-riha.com/publications.htm.




The International Society for Performance Improvement (ISPI) has three special honorary awards that recognize outstanding individuals for their significant contributions to Human Performance Technology (HPT) and to the Society itself. Those awards are the Thomas F. Gilbert Distinguished Professional Achievement Award, the Distinguished Service Award, and the Honorary Life Member Award. ISPI is pleased to announce this year’s recipients: Robert E. Horn, Lynn Kearny, and Dale Brethower. The awards will be bestowed at the 2004 International Performance Improvement Conference & Exposition in Tampa, Florida, April 18-23.


Thomas F. Gilbert Distinguished Professional Achievement Award
This award recognizes outstanding and significant contributions to the knowledge base of HPT. This year’s award goes to Robert E. Horn.

Robert Horn’s early years touched many elements now considered essential to HPT. He was a TV producer-director in the military and a systems analyst at Univac when the discipline was in its infancy. He worked at Basic Systems and conducted research at Columbia University where programmed instruction was being invented, taught at the University of Michigan Graduate School of Business with Dale Brethower and Geary Rummler, and worked with Tom Gilbert and Joe Harless at David Sage Associates. His career has been a series of research and development projects—at universities, research centers, corporations, and five start-ups that he founded—in a breadth of fields related to human learning and cognition, performance, information management, and large-scale problem-solving.

By the mid-1970s, Bob invented the Information Mapping® method of structured writing, probably his most widely known accomplishment. Through Information Mapping, Inc., the method has improved the productivity of tens of thousands of managers, consultants, trainers, writers, web designers, and others in organizations worldwide, benefiting millions of readers with improvements in the readability and performance application. His seminal works in hypertext design and visual language have influenced how we communicate in cyberspace; and his visual mapping of complex arguments has clarified an array of scientific, philosophical, and policy issues, including a recent application for the British Foreign Office at 10 Downing Street.

Bob received the Outstanding Research Award from NSPI for his Information Mapping research and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Association for Computing Machinery. His work has appeared in numerous publications including the renowned journal Nature and at an art museum in The Hague. He currently lectures worldwide, consults to NASA and other organizations, and is a Visiting Scholar at Stanford University.


Distinguished Service Award
Congratulations to Lynn Kearny, this year’s recipient of the Distinguished Service Award, an award that recognizes long-term, outstanding, and significant contributions to the betterment of ISPI.

Lynn’s unassuming demeanor belies her extensive and exceptional HPT career. She is a certified performance technologist, author, facilitator, instructor, and recognized expert in graphic recording. Her publications include chapters in the Handbook of HPT, second edition, and the Intervention Resource Guide, as well as From Training to Performance, in the first ISPI/Jossey-Bass series, and Creating Workplaces Where People Can Think, co-authored with Phyl Smith. Lynn has a unique ability to translate theory into practice as evidenced by her essential resource, the Facilitator’s Toolkit.

Her contributions to the Society range from local chapters to international forums. Lynn served as ISPI Director from 1999-2001 and as a Board facilitator for three ISPI presidents. She served on two presidential “kitchen cabinets,” lending her creative vision to the development of the ISPI HPT Institutes, the CPT certification process, and several strategic “think tanks.” She has served on the Awards, Nominations, and Gilbert committees, as deputy chair of the 1998 Conference Committee, and as co-chair of the 2003 Conference Cracker Barrel.

Lynn’s commitment to the Society is unmistakable. She has presented at every conference since 1990 and continues to serve as faculty for the Principles & Practices Institute. Her contributions to the field of HPT are notable. She made workplace analysis and design visible and accessible to the mainstream of practitioners, promoted the effective use of graphics, and created a 360-degree business model to broaden the HPT practitioner’s understanding of business issues.

Her artistic talents and HPT competence are a unique blend that has touched the lives of many in and outside of ISPI. Her integrity and selfless professionalism serve as standards for all HPT professionals.


Honorary Life Member
This award recognizes outstanding and significant contributions to the field of HPT and the Society. It is not bestowed easily: It requires the unanimous vote of two consecutive ISPI Boards of Directors, making it the Society’s most prestigious award. This year the Society honors Dale Brethower.

Dale Brethower learned fundamental concepts of general systems theory while growing up on the family farm in Kansas. After graduating with honors (summa cum laude, Outstanding Senior in Psychology) from the University of Kansas, Dale earned a master’s degree at Harvard in 1961. While studying with B.F. Skinner, Dale learned that there is a science of behavior that can be applied effectively in natural settings. He also learned that many intelligent people believe nonsense about behaviorism, such as the idea that behavior principles cannot be applied to cognition and emotion. Some people make such comments to this day, not paying attention to the extensive research that continues to show many varied and successful applications.

Dale earned a PhD from the University of Michigan. He applied general systems and behavioral psychology principles successfully in a not-for-profit agency as chief of the Reading Service, Bureau of Psychological Services at the University of Michigan. With Geary Rummler and George Geis, among others, at the Center for Programmed Learning for Business, he pioneered applications of these principles to instruction and to performance improvement in for-profit companies and not-for-profit agencies.

Dale was elected president of ISPI and of the North Central Reading Association. He has been honored for his long history of achievement by the Organizational Behavior Management Network of the International Association for Behavior Analysis.

A professor emeritus of psychology (Western Michigan University), Dale writes, publishes, operates three small businesses, and continues to learn from Carl Semmelroth, Geary Rummler, Karolyn Smalley, and dozens of former students and several ISPI colleagues. He is a member of the Advisory Board of the Performance Systems Analysis area of the Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies. He has consulted with schools and private businesses and has been active in ISPI for about 40 years.



The last full meeting of the current ISPI Board of Directors took place on January 16-18 in Tampa. The “meeting” began a day early for me with a golf outing with ISPI Executive Director/CEO Rick Battaglia and local Tampa chapter president Elvis Lester. We discussed Elvis’ expectations in regard to the Board’s presentation the next day at the lunch meeting with the local chapter.

The next morning the Board met and checked in with notes from our personal and professional lives. Then, we dove into an aggressive agenda and broke to have lunch with the Tampa chapter. Approximately 70 of us networked, ate, and listened to ISPI President-elect Don Tosti talk about HPT and provide some highlights of the work of the Presidential Initiative Task Force on “Clarifying the HPT Value Proposition.” Then, each Board member gave a five-minute overview of how they personally use HPT in their work activities, demonstrating the varied settings and applications of our Human Performance Technologies.

After lunch, we picked up the agenda and discussed ISPI’s Honorary Awards. The formal announcement of this year’s recipients is in the article above. The day ended with preparations of our own roles at the Tampa Conference.

Day two started with a phone-in report and Q&A session with Ray Svenson, who facilitated the Presidential Initiative Think Tank and wrote the final report that chairman John Swinney and I tweaked. More discussion on that topic ensued and led to the next agenda item on the Strategic & Operational Plan. As I’ve mentioned in past correspondence, we’ve spent the year on this plan and will turn it over to the next Board to begin implementation.

Day three was the final half-day. We began with a discussion regarding the extension of the Board term from two to three years to address “continuity” as every other year there are more new Board members than retained. We settled on extending the president’s position into a three-year commitment, where the immediate “past president” will become a non-voting member of the next Board, to provide “counsel” only, and will not disempower the President from his/her leadership role.

Next, we dove into the macro-planning for an orientation session in Tampa for all ISPI committee and task force chairs. Of note, from the September Board meeting was the new policy requiring all committee and task force chairs to attend an orientation at the Annual Conference. Since these are the Society’s leaders, the Board felt strongly enough about the alignment issues to make attendance at the orientation a condition of service in a leadership role, despite the fact that we are all volunteers. This year, orientation will occur early in the conference, at a morning “coffee” and will enable the two sets of “outgoing and incoming” Board members and chairs to meet and discuss “completing and aligning to the plan.”

Lastly, the Board concentrated on identifying new chairs for our committees and task forces that will begin their aligned work at the Tampa Conference.

When the meeting ended, it was off to the airport for most of us. Off-line work continues as we prepare for our next meeting, the conference, and get ready for the next cycle in the life of a professional society. I hope that your year is off a great start! See you in Tampa!



The International Society for Performance Improvement (ISPI) Awards of Excellence program is designed to showcase the people, products, innovations, and organizations that represent excellence in the field of instructional and Human Performance Technology.

Outstanding Human Performance Intervention
This award recognizes outstanding human performance interventions.

Fidelity Investments FESCo Service Delivery University™

MyCareer@FESCo!™ is a unique program that enables Fidelity Investments’ employees to take charge of their own development and career growth. All employees need to know where they stand in their current jobs and in any potential career steps they might take. With MyCareer@FESCo!™, employees have a clear picture of their current job requirements and the learning and performance support tools available to them, and also guidance in acquiring and developing competencies for other prospective jobs in the organization. MyCareer@FESCo!™ has yielded enormous benefits for the organization. Employees now have the resources to take charge of their own development, and

  • Articulate the specific competency requirements of their current position
  • Identify the specific competency areas that are strong or need development
  • Identify strategies for performance improvement and formulate a development plan
  • Identify possible career paths and the competencies required to progress
  • Hold a structured and positive conversation with their manager

Outstanding Performance Aid
This award recognizes the reduction of dependence on memory by storing information, processes, or perspectives that influence or guide job behavior.

High-Impact Knowledge Management System
Jacalyn Smeltzer, PhD, CPT, Lisa Toenniges, CPT, and David Bonello, CPT, Triad

Triad designed and implemented an internal knowledge management system (KMS) to decrease development time associated with service offerings, and reinforce the company’s brand image through its people delivering consistent work. Analysis of the situation indicated that developing and enforcing better knowledge management practices to support employees’ performance on the job would support these goals.

Evaluation data indicates that Triad’s KMS has achieved business impact evidenced in a statistically significant improvement in the consistency of performance and a considerable reduction in development time. Triad realized a 100% return on investment in just over 16 months and has saved up to 5% of operating costs in efficiencies each year thereafter.

Outstanding Instructional Product or Intervention
This award recognizes outstanding results derived from instructional products and interventions developed through systematic approaches to human performance problems, needs, or opportunities.

Basic Assemblers Course
Stork Electronics B.V. represented by Mr. H.R. Claessen, Mrs. H. Van Krugten, and ACE Ability Creation Experts, represented by Mrs. J.H.S. Van der Wielen, CPT

Stork Electronics assembles printboards. The assemblers do not have electro-technical education; they learn by “sitting next to Nelly.” This Basic Assemblers Course is the start of the development of a complete know-how system. The program was developed and implemented in seven months. Training, organized as part of the job, provides instruction, practice, and feedback. Mentoring is also part of the training program. Materials include handbooks for trainees and mentors, components, tools, production procedures, and so forth. The quality and efficiency numbers improved after the program was initiated.

FAA Indoc Basics and Applications Courses
FAA Air510 and Carney, Inc.

The Indoctrination Basics and Indoctrination Applications courses work together to introduce new FAA Aircraft Certification Service employees to the structure and processes of their organization. The courses represent an analysis-based redesign from an eight-day lecture-based course to an approximately six-day blended learning experience. A 20-hour asynchronous online component provides the “what” of aircraft certification. A follow-on three-day automated classroom component provides practical hands-on experience in the form of an extended case study that promotes use of the fundamentals, access to online tools, and application of teamwork principles, so important to the FAA.

IDSI: Division Officer at Sea Program
Susan L. Coleman, PhD, CPT, Ellen S. Menaker, PhD, CPT, Marci N. Murawski, EdD, CPT, Michael L. Gillies, MA, MS, Margaret R. Wright, PhD, and Suzanne Hoffman, PhD

The Division Officer At Sea program signals a dramatic change in the way the U.S. Navy trains its Surface Warfare Officers. Designed, developed, and evaluated by IDSI, the Divo At Sea program transitioned junior officer training from a traditional schoolhouse to the at-sea environment. The program presents a performance-based solution to integrating junior officers more quickly and more effectively into the shipboard operating environment in which they are expected to perform. The program employs a variety of tools promoting learning that complements work and qualification processes, and permits a customized self-paced solution for each trainee. Program elements help trainees develop requisite foundational knowledge, engage in practical application, exercise problem-solving skills, and acquire leadership and professional watch-standing competencies.

Consumer Driven 6-Sigma Green Belt Training
Judith Theobald, Ford Motor Company, and David Schultz, General Physics Corporation

Ford Motor Company implemented Consumer Driven 6-Sigma to reduce variability through systematic, data-driven, process improvement. While Black Belts lead major projects, Green Belts apply problem-solving principles to daily work, support Black Belts on specific projects, and ensure that improvements are sustained. Green Belt training is an integral element of a curriculum that supports long-term deployment of 6-Sigma. Training development followed a systematic design process, and the solution is supported by a multifaceted approach to evaluation. The target audience for the blended solution includes all managers, product development professionals, manufacturing engineers, and extends to unionized employees and portions of the supply base.

Evaluating Performance-Based Designs
Robert A. Neale and Mary J. Feeherry, National Fire Administration and Performance Technologies International, Inc.

Buildings constructed following performance-based designs incorporate unique features never contemplated in traditional prescriptive building codes. (For example, one complex is 1,149’ high, with a 12-story rotating entertainment pod and roller coaster on the top.) This training program was developed by NFA and PTIi, following HPT principles. The objective was to improve the capability of fire professionals to work with other stakeholders in a project—owners, engineers and architects, and tenants—in a systematic approach to evaluating performance-based building designs that ensures the resulting buildings resist fire, and keep occupants and property safe in the event that a fire occurs.

A New Hire Learning Solution for Customer Care Agents in a Health Insurance Call Center
Ferdinand Tesoro, Project Sponsor and Director, Operations Performance Department (OPD), and Jennifer Justice, Project Lead and OPD Manager, WellPoint

Among the goals of this new-hire solution are to decrease associate ramp-up time, improve quality, and increase customer satisfaction. The solution involves a blended learning experience and includes self-paced modules, instructor kit, customer service scenario bank, online performance support tool, assessments and answer keys, and quality audit tool. Implementation results achieved include a 20% decrease in associate ramp-up time, 2.8% improvement in quality, 10% decrease in average handle time, and significantly higher associate satisfaction compared to baseline data.

Outstanding Instructional Communication
This award recognizes an outstanding communication that enables individuals or organizations to achieve excellence in Human Performance Technology.

DaimlerChrysler Services Communication Database
Connie Langlois, DaimlerChrysler Services

The DaimlerChrysler Services “All Eyes on Integration” Instructional Communication Database was designed to support the successful implementation of the Consumer Portfolio Integration project. It was imperative that the training strategy provide just-in-time training, utilizing the most effective, efficient, and applicable solutions to optimize user performance for a seamless system and process launch.

To ensure that the training strategy was successfully implemented, DaimlerChrysler developed an instructional communication database that would allow them to communicate training initiatives just in time and would serve as a central repository for all Consumer Portfolio Integration related training materials.

e-Learning and the Science of Instruction
Ruth Colvin Clark and Richard E. Mayer

Drawing on extensive empirical research conducted by Richard Mayer, e-Learning and the Science of Instruction summarizes and illustrates evidence and guidelines for optimal use of words and visuals in multimedia instruction to promote learning. Later chapters summarize evidence-based guidelines for design and placement of practice and examples, use of synchronous and asynchronous communication facilities, learner control, and design of problem-based e-learning.

e-Learning and the Science of Instruction is rated a 5 Star book on Amazon and has been positively reviewed in Training and Development, Performance Improvement, and Canadian Journal of Training.

High Impact Learning
Written by Robert O. Brinkerhoff and Anne M. Apking; submitted by: Anne M. Apking, Principal Consultant, Triad

Much has changed in the past 10 to 15 years with regard to learning, including an explosion of technology that enables learning in new and innovative ways. But at the same time, much has remained the same. Almost all organizational training is a marginal intervention and has only slight effects on performance improvement. The trend to e-learning and other enabling technologies holds promise, but offers no guarantee that high-tech training is likely to have more impact than any other sort of training.

In this book, the authors have created the high-impact learning (HIL) approach. HIL is a comprehensive conceptual framework and integrated set of methods and tools that training practitioners can use in any setting to help their organizations achieve dramatically increased business results from learning investments.

Chapters of Merit
Chapter awards celebrate the accomplishments of local ISPI Chapters. The awards emphasize accomplishments rather than competition of the Chapters.

Chapters of Excellence
The award is given to chapters that fulfill rigorous standards of excellence.

Austin, Texas, ISPI Chapter

The Austin Chapter of ISPI was a good, solid organization; however, applying for the Chapter of Excellence Award catapulted them into becoming so much more! The Chapter established measurable goals, strategically aligned to the national organization (meeting them by 90% at the time of submission). Board members developed Individual Performance Plans, tied to the goals. Processes were documented and process improvements implemented where gaps existed. They enhanced their educational program with an intentional study of the HPT model over 12 monthly meetings. Their website was redesigned to be a better resource and promotional tool.

Kansas City ISPI Chapter

In 2003, the Kansas City Chapter of ISPI focused on aligning their strategic plan with the goals and objectives of International. A part of that alignment was to ensure they were meeting ISPI criteria for chapter excellence. They saw applying for the Chapter of Excellence Award as a great opportunity to celebrate the things they did well, and also understand the areas in which they could improve. The Kansas City ISPI chapter has been in existence since 1990 and has previously won a Chapter of Excellence Award, a Communications Award of Excellence, and a Virtual Chapter Award of Excellence. With each application, they continue to learn about new ways to serve members and share the ISPI and HPT story.


Minnesota ISPI Chapter

The Minnesota Chapter of ISPI has been wow-ing its members since 1977. Their mission is to provide professionals with the information, resources, and skills necessary to improve performance. Their vision is to be recognized leaders in improving how work gets done. To accomplish the mission and vision, they create programs that focus on performance improvement and continually aim to increase member benefit. To achieve this, the Chapter hosts two national speakers every year, in addition to the eight chapter meetings led by top-notch presenters. They also run the organization using performance improvement principals. The Chapter of Excellence is more than an award to them; it is a guideline on how they run the Chapter.

New Mexico ISPI Chapter

The New Mexico Chapter has a long history of successes that continued in 2003! The year saw the chapter reach, and exceed, its strategic goals. Particular highlights include:

  • Successful pilot of the shared Presidency role
  • Securing incorporation, the first step to becoming a 501(c)3
  • Launch of a redesigned website that imparts a New Mexican theme, while maintaining professionalism (see http://www.nmispi.org)
  • Meeting (and surpassing) an aggressive membership growth goal
  • Maintaining and increasing financial solvency
  • Providing members with top-quality publications
  • Offering monthly programs to feed the professional development of the members and community



Performance Marketplace is a convenient way  to exchange information of interest to the performance improvement community. Take a few moments each month to scan the listings for important new events, publications, services, and employment opportunities. To post information for our readers, contact ISPI Director of Marketing, Keith Pew at keithp@ispi.org or 301.587.8570.

Books and Reports
High Impact Learning, by Robert O. Brinkerhoff and Anne M. Apking, provides the HIL conceptual framework including integrated tools and methods that help organizations achieve business results from learning. Winner of the 2004 Award of Excellence for Outstanding Instructional Communication.

Conferences, Seminars, and Workshops
Darryl L. Sink & Associates, Inc. is offering these workshops in 2004: The Criterion Referenced Testing Workshop, Atlanta, GA, March 22-23; Designing Instruction for Web-Based Training, Chicago, March 15-17; and The Instructional Developer Workshop, Chicago and Dallas. Visit www.dsink.com for details and to register!

Public workshops by Thiagi. Learn Thiagi’s radical approach to instructional design. Faster, cheaper, better (and fun at no extra charge). Based on 30 years of fieldwork that challenges the traditional ISD model. Two locations: Indianapolis: June 14-15 and Palo Alto, CA: June 17-18. Visit www.thiagi.com for more information!.




Job and Career Resources
ISPI Online CareerSite is your source for performance improvement employment. Search listings and manage your resume and job applications online.

Magazines, Newsletters, and Journals
Performance Improvement Quarterly, co-published by ISPI and FSU, is a peer-reviewed journal created to stimulate professional discussion in the field and to advance the discipline of Human Performance Technology through literature reviews, experimental studies with a scholarly base, and case studies. Subscribe today!

Resource Directories
ISPI Online Buyers Guide offers resources for your performance improvement, training, instructional design and organizational development initiatives.




Are you working to improve workplace performance? Then, ISPI membership is your key to professional development through education, certification, networking, and professional affinity programs.

If you are already a member, we thank you for your support. If you have been considering membership or are about to renew, there is no better time to join ISPI. To apply for membership or renew, visit www.ispi.org, or simply click here.



ISPI is looking for Human Performance Technology (HPT) articles (approximately 500 words and not previously published) for PerformanceXpress that bridge the gap from research to practice (please, no product or service promotion is permitted). Below are a few examples of the article formats that can be used:

  • Short “I wish I had thought of that” Articles
  • Practical Application Articles
  • The Application of HPT
  • Success Stories

In addition to the article, please include a short bio (2-3 lines) and a contact email address. All submissions should be sent to april@ispi.org. Each article will be reviewed by one of ISPI’s on-staff HPT experts, and the author will be contacted if it is accepted for publication. If you have any further questions, please contact april@ispi.org.



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If you have any questions or comments, please contact April Davis, ISPI’s Senior Director of Publications, at april@ispi.org.

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