December 2010

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In this issue:

Six Steps to Putting Performance in the Performance Review

Ad: Performance Improvement Conference


Challenges to Working with Adult Learners

Ad: PT Toolkit

’Tis Season of Quality Education: 2010-11 SkillCast Series

From the Board

Research-to-Practice Day Opens THE Performance Improvement Conference 2011

ISPI’s Board of Directors Candidates

Organizational Spotlight

ISPI Announces New Geary Rummler Award

ISPI Presents Exciting Headliners for Orlando

Tales from the Field

ISPI’s 50th Anniversary Around the Corner

CPT News

Chapter Corner

Performance Improvement Journal Seeks Editor

Lights, Camera, Action! 99-Second Video Contest

Invitation to Participate in Research Studies

Career Center

Performance Marketplace

Join ISPI Now!

Newsletter Submission Guidelines

ISPI Board of Directors

ISPI Advocates

Back Issues





Six Steps to Putting Performance in the Performance Review

by Jim Hill, EdD, Proofpoint System

The employee performance review process continues to get poor marks. A Wall Street Journal article (Nov 8, 2008, p. B8), reported that in a survey of 750 HR professionals, 58% grade their performance management systems a C or below. On top of that, only 30% of employees have a sense of trust in these systems. Their concerns include:

  • A lack of managerial courage to provide constructive feedback to employees
  • A lack of control for how the review process is executed
  • A lack of consistency in ratings
  • A lack of transparency in the process
  • Irregularity in manager-employee performance-related communication

Most computer-based support systems focus more on the completion of administrative forms than on the realization of important organizational objectives.

The shortcomings summarized in the WSJ article likely stem from the employee review process becoming an automated HR activity versus a means to truly measure performance.

Here are six steps for ensuring your employee review process addresses your organization’s performance needs.

  • Provide a means to write effective goals. Most computer-based processes provide a plain text field for writing intended goals. This approach is problematic in that most people do not naturally know how to write a clear, observable, measurable objective. Training is the typical response, but this takes too long and costs too much, plus the results are fleeting. Once the training is complete and goals are written, people forget the process—training is required almost every year (which is a great business for performance consultants!).
  • Systematize the communication process. Establish set time frames for periodic conversations. If you use a computerized system, ensure it has an “auto-ping” function that sends reminders on a regular schedule.
  • Provide a means to capture performance information throughout the year.
  • Embed training in automated systems. This puts key lessons at employees’ fingertips and significantly reduces the need for costly training sessions
  • Have a scoring protocol. To be valuable, your processes should be able to support a scoring “range” that sets clear boundaries, reinforces incentive and reward processes, and provides room for manager-employee dialogue. Be sure your automated system does not “over-automate” scoring. Too much can eliminate managerial judgment and may not recognize the complexity of the work or the environment.
  • Aggregate performance data. Give yourself a way to visualize reporting trends, highlight redundancies and opportunities for collaboration, and identify “hidden gems”—those people on your teams that consistently overproduce.

Employing the steps above will increase managerial effectiveness, employee trust, and on-the-job performance.

The result will be a performance organization driven by data and communication.

Jim Hill, EdD, is the CEO of Proofpoint Systems, a leading provider of easy-to-use organizational performance support systems that helpclients solve their toughest business issues. He may be reached at

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This puts key lessons at employees’ fingertips and significantly reduces the need for costly training sessions.



Happy Holidays

by Carol Haig, CPT, and Roger Addison, CPT, EdD

Not too long ago we were caught up in the events of summer with time at the beach, working in the garden, cooking out in the backyard, and enjoying the long days with family and friends. And now, as we rapidly approach the winter holidays and a new year, we stop to consider the events of 2010 and look hopefully ahead to 2011.

Here at TrendSpotters Central, we reflect on our 9th year of collaboration in this space. We gratefully recall our many guests and the resources they have so graciously shared with you, our readers, and with us. We have enjoyed wonderful conversations, gained new knowledge, and have put to use many of the models and tools featured here.

We send a heartfelt thank you to our many contributors, and to our loyal readers. We wish you all a joyful holiday season, happy times with those you cherish, and a new year full of opportunity on every level.

Happy Holidays and keep spotting trends.

Carol & Roger

You may reach Carol Haig at or at; Roger Addison may be reached at Roger blogs at

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Challenges to Working with Adult Learners

by Kelly King, Bayer HealthCare LLC

There are many challenges to working with adult learners that providers of instruction face. Knowing the challenges you might face when working with adults is the key step to being a successful human performance technologist. Another key to success is to apply your knowledge of adult learning theories and principles when developing training programs to give adult learners the best learning experience possible.

One of the biggest challenges to working with adults is that they have preconceived notions about what training should look like. Oftentimes learners have had negative training experiences they carry with them. In addition, adults are often forced to take training that they have requested. This combination can make training a negative experience for some learners. Because of the negative connotations most adults associate with training, it may take extra motivation to get your learners to learn and transfer the knowledge from the training session to the job. One way to motivate your learners is to make the training interactive and engage your learners during the training. Studies have shown that adult learners prefer an interactive training session over one where they are simply lectured to (Lucas, 2008). It has also been shown that more learning occurs when the participants are engaged and can interact within the training (Elkind, 2008). Also, adults prefer to use different learning styles when they learn. Try using different learning styles that appeal to a variety of learners instead of only lecture-based training sessions.

Adult learners often have previous knowledge of the subject matter that they bring to the table. You can leverage that knowledge during a training session by asking the learners for their input throughout the session. Remember that you can use your trainees as a resource for information. Instead of telling the learners what they already know, ask them what they know. This can be done at the beginning of a training session to assess your audience for understanding and to ensure that you are not dumping information onto your learners that they already know.

One of the most important aspects to consider when working with adults is that they want to know how the training will add value or “what’s in it for me” (WIIFM). Therefore, it is important to make training relevant to the job and emphasize how the learning can be used on the job. This may include using case studies, examples from the workplace, or problem-solving techniques related to the work that they do. This can be a challenge if you have a mixed group of learners that have different jobs across different industries; however, still try to demonstrate how the training information can be used in their daily work.

The environment in which the training is to take place is another key element to developing a successful training program. It is important to ensure that the environment meets the needs of the learners. Adults need to feel safe within their learning environment so that they can be comfortable being engaged in the lesson and asking questions. Also consider using an informal seating arrangement. You may want to configure chairs in a U-shape, in a circle, or around a table instead of the traditional classroom setup.

There are many considerations to think about when you are developing and delivering instruction to adult learners to ensure that you are delivering effective training programs. The most important of which is to engage your audience and use them as a resource during the training session. By making the training interactive, your learners will likely take in more of the knowledge and transfer it to the job.


Lucas, Robert W. (2008). Corporate Training: Adult Learning 101. Retrieved from

Elkind, David. (2008, June 19). Cognitive and Emotional Development Through Play. Greater Good Magazine.

Kelly King is an instructional designer for Bayer HealthCare in Berkeley, CA. Kelly holds a BS and MS in Instructional Design and Technology from California State University, Chico. She may be reached at

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You can leverage that knowledge during a training session by asking the learners for their input throughout the session.



’Tis the Season of Quality Education:
2010-11 SkillCast Series

ISPI is excited for its 2010-11 SkillCast webinar series. These 12 high-quality, engaging educational programs are specifically tailored to help performance improvement professionals stay current and share knowledge with others in the field. You know how important it is to be up-to-date and that fresh ideas are the key to success. This webinar series offers you a unique opportunity to access innovation and accomplish your professional development goals, all from the comfort of your own workspace.

ISPI members can attend each monthly, one-hour program for as little as $54 each with a $649 season pass. The non-member fee is $899. This gives you access to the live webinar and the recorded program after it takes place.

ISPI also offers a Corporate Season pass, for $1,429, for those organizations wanting to offer continuing educational and professional development to their staff.

2010-11 SkillCast Schedule*

Wednesday, December 15, 2010
HPT’s Role in Business Continuity: What it Means, Why It Is Important, and the Role of HPT in the Process
Dean Larson, CPT, PhD, Principal, Larson Performance Consulting
Business continuity management programming is essential for an organization, either private or public sector, to survive in times of extreme disruption of operations. Professionals in human performance technology (HPT) focus their skills and professional wisdom on being essential to organizations. HPT professionals working business continuity initiatives in a natural fit. Learn how to apply the 10 Standards of Performance Technology to the business continuity management process. In this program you will discuss the importance of organizational resilience to disruption. This session is for you if your organization is considering or has business continuity and emergency management plans. Register Online

Wednesday, January 19, 2011
How to Address the Cultural Aspects of HPT Interventions
Eileen Maeso, CPT, United States Coast Guard, & Andrea Edmundson, PhD, CEO and Global Learning Strategist, eWorldLearning

Wednesday, February 16, 2011
How High Performers Learn—Implications for HPT
Daniel R. Bielenberg, Director of Capability Development Strategy, Accenture, & Dana Alan Koch, Learning Strategist, Accenture

Wednesday, March 16, 2011
How to Use HPT to Navigate the Gray Space for Positive Change
Deb Page, President, Willing Learner

Wednesday, April 20, 2011
Strategies for Developing a Contemporary Training Curriculum
Dawn Snyder, CPT, PhD, Chair, Master’s of Science in Instructional Design and Performance Technology, Franklin University

Wednesday, May 18, 2011
How Documentation Infrastructures Contribute to Performance Improvement
Edith E. Bell, CPT, PhD, Principal Consultant for Bell Design Technologies, Inc.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011
How to Get & Use Customer Knowledge to Support Innovation
Lance J. Welter, Chair, Certification Networking Group of Chicago, & Tricia Sutton, MSc, MBA, PMP, NPDP, President, Sutton Enterprise Inc.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011
Building & Sustaining Relationships
Mike Monar, President, Monar Consulting

Wednesday, August 17, 2011
Designing Effective Multigenerational Learning Experiences
Donald Shandler, PhD, President, Shandler Associates & Adjunct Faculty, University of Maryland-Baltimore County

Wednesday, September 21, 2011
How to Get Reliable Data from Groups
Maurie Coleman, CPT, PhD, Director of Certification and Accreditation, ISPI

Register for your SkillCast webinar season today and immediately receive the links to our recorded programs from October and November: Quality Tools & Human Performance Technology, with Tom Berstene, MA, Founder & President, Workforce Planning Associations and Social Media at Work: How Networking Tools Propel Organizational Performance with Mary Ellen Kassotakis, CPT, EdD, MBA, Director, Leadership Development Center of Expertise, Oracle America, Inc. For more information, call ISPI at 301.587.8570 or visit to order.

*Schedule subject to change.

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From the Board
I am ISPI and So Can You

by Dawn Papaila, CPT, ISPI Director

I begin by giving “a tip of the hat” to Stephen Colbert for inspiring the title of this article, and “a wag of the finger” to myself for using a US-centric, political comedian as a reference. Given the mixed audience of this organization, I’ve either lost you completely, or made you laugh. But at least I have your attention and now I will do my best to convince you that YOU are ISPI and that YOU can create ISPI’s future.

Currently I’m serving as an elected, volunteer member of the Board of Directors. And, even though I began this article in jest, I take that responsibility seriously. In a very real sense, the agenda we set and the decisions we make impact the evolution of this organization.

But the real influence comes from our committee members. Since ISPI members are change agents, our committees are constantly pointing out opportunities for performance improvement.

With the exception of the Treasurer, each Board Member is assigned as a liaison to one or more volunteer committees. Our job as a liaison is to align the activities of that committee with ISPI’s strategic plan and then to provide that committee the resources and information they need to succeed in meeting their goals and objectives.

I did not plan on being a Director. So, how did this happen? Well, let me share that information with you so you can strategize your own path to the Board or carefully avoid that outcome.

As is true for many Directors, my path began in my local chapter. I volunteered and eventually served as President where I learned that managing volunteers is quite different from managing employees. In many cases, it is easier because they are intrinsically motivated!

At the 2005 International Conference, I noticed one of my former graduate school classmates was hobnobbing with all the “famous” presenters. I asked my friend how that had happened. And, before I knew it, Chris Voelkl introduced me to the incoming Co-chair of the Conference Committee, Monique Mueller.

I eagerly accepted Monique’s invitation to help plan the 2007 Conference and ended up working with an amazing team of people. Clare Carey was President and inclusion was our theme. The friendships formed on that committee made ISPI my professional home.

Luise Schneider and I were co-chairs of the 2009 Conference Committee and together we applied HPT to the planning process and the team created the Emerging Professionals Committee and the first annual Case Study Competition.

When asked if I would accept a nomination to the Board, I thought long and hard knowing the position was quite a commitment. But I care deeply about ISPI and knew first-hand that the volunteers shape the future of ISPI.

Now I’m not claiming that there is a direct correlation, but two members from the 2007 Conference Committee were elected to the Board of Directors. And four members of the current Board of Directors led Conference Committees.

Please help drive the evolution of ISPI by volunteering for a local chapter, attending the International Conference, and actively volunteering. And, yes, you should set your sights on becoming a Director. After all, YOU are ISPI.

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Research-to-Practice Day Opens THE Performance Improvement Conference 2011

THE Performance Improvement Conference 2011
has added a NEW full-day symposium to share the latest performance improvement research and show you how to use it in your organization today. This highly anticipated, interactive day is not to be missed. The ISPI Research-to-Practice Day offers you a unique opportunity to explore a broad variety of research studies underlying human performance technology (HPT) within the context of practice and with researchers who produce and report this research.

“You will leave feeling nourished and more confident about what you, as an HPT professional practitioner, can offer to the organizations you serve,” says Miki Lane, CPT, ISPI president.

In the morning session, you will hear from renowned HPT researchers to learn about their research-validated findings and practices to get up to speed on the research fast. They will explain the different research methods used to derive valid findings as well as what these differences mean for trusting the data. The afternoon will center around highly interactive small-group discussions designed to address specific challenges you are facing in your workplace now. The wrap-up session will synthesize what has been learned to each participant’s benefit. Leave the symposium energized and confident about the unique value you bring as a performance improvement practitioner to your organization.

Confirmed speakers include the following with more on the way.

Harold Stolovitch, CPT, PhD, Event Coordinator and Emeritus Professor of Workplace Learning and Performance, Université de Montréal and former Clinical Professor of Human Performance at Work, University of Southern California, to speak on Discoveries: A Voyage through a Half Century of Research Directly Related to Workplace Performance and Learning.

Ryan Watkins, PhD, Associate Professor of Educational Technology Leadership at George Washington University and co-editor of ISPI’s Handbook of Improving Performance in the Workplace: Selecting and Implementing Performance Interventions, to speak on What the Very Latest Research from a Variety of Fields Offers the HPT Professional.

Atsusi “2c” Hirumi, PhD, an Associate Professor and Co-Chair of the Instructional Technology Program at the University of Central Florida and Tom Atkinson, PhD, an Assistant Professor for Instructional Technology at the University of Central Florida, will take on the topic Applying Neuroscience: What Does our Brain Tell Us About Human Learning and Performance?

Be sure to register now for the conference, April 10-13, in Orlando. Take advantage of early bird registration by signing up by December 23, 2010. For more information about the full conference schedule, topics, and speakers, visit

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ISPI’s Board of Directors Candidates

Below are the candidates
, as submitted by the Nominations Committee, for the International Society for Performance Improvement’s Board of Directors election.

First on the ballot is the President-elect (three-year term, President-elect, President, and Immediate Past President) who will join the Board after the Annual Conference with two newly-elected Directors (two-year term). In total, the membership will vote for three open Board positions.

The following Board members retain their seats: Judith Hale, CPT, PhD, Lisa Toenniges, CPT, Dawn Papaila, CPT, Luise Schneider, CPT, Immediate Past President Miki Lane, CPT, and April S. Davis, CAE (ex officio).

All of our candidates are capable, experienced, and eager to serve you as a member of ISPI’s Board of Directors (listed in alphabetical order by last name).


  • Carol Lynn Judge, CPT
  • Jack Phillips, PhD


  • Stephanie Fuentes, PhD
  • Ingrid Guerra-Lopez, PhD
  • Steven Kelly, CPT
  • Gregory Nell

Thank You Nominations Committee

ISPI would like to thank the members of this year’s Nominations Committee for their hard work. The committee consisted of Anne Apking (Chair), Eileen Banchoff, Jennifer Eichenberg, Lynn Kearny, Kenneth Dutkiewicz, and Harold Stolovitch.

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Organizational Spotlight
An Interview with Jean Claude Latter, Achievement Awards Group

Welcome to ISPI’s Organizational Spotlight!
This column focuses on our members—some you may know, some you may not. Each month, we will explore what brought them to ISPI, how they use the principles of human performance technology (HPT), and their insights into the value of membership. This month our interview is with Jean Claude Latter, director of sales, Achievement Awards Group (Pty) Ltd.

Does Achievement Awards Group work locally/nationally/ Internationally/Globally? How does your organization approach human performance technology in each of these landscapes?

We work nationally but include some bordering African countries that fall within a similar Reserve Bank juristiction. The same HPT approach is adopted. There are occasions where we are asked to do work in the UK and more recently in North America. There are many times where we would refer these opportunities to our partners Maritz Corporation to pursue these.

How does Achievement Awards Group adapt to performance improvement needs for the today’s variety of generational workforces?

As part of our “discovery” phase with our prospective clients, an analysis of the participant is done to determine both demographics and psychographics, which informs the design of the systems of our solutions, including:

  • How we communicate and which media will best achieve the desired results
  • The type of motivational reward that will appeal to the target audience
  • The best way to share learnings from the performance improvement program
  • How feedback on performance is given and received

How do you use social media in your work?

As a solution, we have a “recognition and incentives” blog that invites discussion about the topics in the industry, which is part of our SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) strategy. I addition, we have created a social network for one of our major clients, allowing the participants on the program to share information and interact with each other.

What is your favorite HPT/CPT story?

The HPT approach requires an “agnostic” approach and it is amazing that what organizations think is the problem and have preconceived ideas on what the solution should be are, most times, off track. We are very often complimented in the marketplace on our professional approach versus our competitors. Using the guiding principles of HPT gives us that edge.

What excites you about ISPI’s work?

It incorporates various disciplines into a body of work that can be used to correctly analyze “performance problems” as well providing guiding principles on implementing solutions.

What types of learning and performance improvement opportunities does Achievement Awards Group offer its employees and clients?

Through our tried-and-tested methodologies, which incorporate elements of the behavioral sciences, we are able to impact significantly on those factors that need to be analyzed and included, when looking for both business and individual performance improvement, namely ensuring that we factor in and adopt systems thinking when considering antecedants, behavior, and consequences.

How has Achievement Awards Group’s approaches to performance improvement changed over time?

Over the last 30 years, we have moved from merely being an organization that designs and implements incentive programs to an organization that adopts a more holistic approach to improving both organizational and individual performance. We have become a lot more “scientific” in our approach, embracing the principles and methodologies of ISPI. As a learning organization, we keep abreast of current and future thinking in our industry and implement what we are learning in solutions with clients. The neurosciences is an area of great learning opportunity for us at present.

What has your organization learned from the recent economic slowdown?

That a “slowdown” does not mean “stand still.” There are still opportunities to help organizations improve performance. There is a greater need for people to develop and hone their knowledge and skills so that they can provide greater value to the organization. Multi-skilling is critical. Organizations tend to carry “excess baggage.” It takes a situation like this to become “lean and mean.”

What interesting things does Achievement Awards Group do to manage and develop its human capital?

Our matrix organization model enables people in the organization to adopt leadership roles, depending on the project at hand. Through this approach, we learn from each other constantly. Our consultants ensure that they are always keeping up with new learnings in the industry, which is incorporated into our approach to HPT and any new thinking is then shared with the team.

How does human performance technology add value to Achievement Awards Group? How do you measure its worth and value?

HPT is incorporated in every facet of the work we do with our clients. Correctly applying the principles of HPT, results in generating an ROI for our clients. What better way to measure its value and worth. HPT provides us with a framework that is both professional and credible. Our reputation in the marketplace is one of being a professional and credible organization that produces real results for our clients

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Announcing ISPI’s Newest Award:
The Geary Rummler Award for the Advancement of Performance Improvement

ISPI is proud to announce the Geary Rummler Award for the Advancement of Performance Improvement. The Rummler Award recognizes individuals or organizations that espouse Geary’s performance improvement work ethic with demonstrated results. The ISPI Advocates teamed with Geary’s family to develop the award criteria. By acknowledging the innovative work of practitioners who are raising the bar for performance results in organizations, ISPI honors the memory of Geary Rummler. For more information and to download the submission packet, click here. The deadline for submissions is February 1, 2011.

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ISPI Presents Exciting Headliners for Orlando

ISPI is rolling into Orlando, Florida, April 8-13, for THE Performance Improvement Conference 2011. Join Harold Stolovitch and Saul Carliner on April 10 as they launch our new Research-to-Practice Day! Then, get ready for three powerful days of learning and networking as we reflect on the work, worker, and workplace. Join Elliott Masie, Joseph Fiskel, Philip Kirby, Andrew Hill, and all your performance improvement colleagues. Early registration closes December 23, 2010. For more information, visit

After ISPI’s new Research-to-Practice Day, celebrate performance improvement with four amazing keynote speakers.

Flip Happens! Changing the Process for Performance!
Elliott Masie, The Learning CONSORTIUM

Resilient Today, Sustainable Tomorrow
Joseph Fiksel, Center for
Resilience at
The Ohio State University

Performance Improvement Through
Brilliant Process Management

Phillip Kirby, Organization Thoughtware International Inc.

Lead Your Team
to Greatness the John Wooden

Andy Hill, Past President of CBS Productions

Recently, Glenda Feldt, CPT, EdD, had an opportunity to sit downwith Andy Hill. Below is a reflection on their conversation.

On a rainy autumn morning I was on the phone with Andy Hill, former president of CBS Productions. Andy is slated to speak at the 2011 ISPI Conference in Orlando and the interview was to provide information we can use to generate interest in his presentation among ISPI’s potential conference attendees. Before the interview, we sent Andy Hill a list of six questions, affording him the professional courtesy to prepare before we spoke. The purpose of the intervie was to present a brief preview of what we can look forward to in his presentation next April.

I was very serious and determined to guide the interview to learn more than his online biography. Interestingly enough, we never got past the first two questions and I learned enough about Andy to make me eager to hear him speak. Andy asked what I knew about him, so I quoted from his website that he was a motivational speaker. He stopped me and asked what I thought a motivational speaker was. “It’s somebody who lights a fire under you,” I offered. “Yes and what happens to that fire the next day or so after you leave the session?” he asked. I realized that typically that fire just fizzles and goes out. Andy then told me he is “an inspirational speaker who wants to light a fire inside of you.” He said a fire inside you will glow and grow and can be life changing.

I explained what ISPI is about, and talked about human performance technology, performance improvement, and how we focus our professional efforts on improving the worker, the work, and the workplace. I explained that much of our professional effort is to help companies improve productivity and profits. Andy’s thoughtful response was that we have done a very bad job by isolating people in the workplace. “All we do now is make money. We’ve mostly stopped manufacturing in this country. We need to again make things and we need to value people.” Andy described how companies set up a 5- or 10-year plan to nurture and grow the organization with an eye toward increasing profits. He explained for the organization to grow, its leaders must have values, and the most important value has to be how you treat people. One of his keys to success is for leaders to “Be most interested in finding the best way, not having your way.” Click here to read the entire interview.

Join ISPI on April 10-13, 2011, in Orlando, Florida, for Andy Hill’s presentation, “Lead Your Team to Greatness the John Wooden Way.” Register now for THE Performance Improvement Conference 2011 on April 10-13, in Orlando, FL. Take advantage of early-bird pricing by registering before December 23, 2010. For more information or to register visit

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Tales From the Field
Was there success in life? Blending to create usable and effective models

by Beth McGoldrick

Tales from the Field, a monthly column, consists of reports of evidence-based performance improvement practice and advice, presented by graduate students, alumni, and faculty of Boise State University’s Instructional and Performance Technology department.

The Need for a Training Program

Our company is a major financial services firm in the United States. Due to a training void caused by decentralized advisor training, compounded by a lack of qualified trainers, new and inexperienced advisors did not know when to use life and disability insurance products with clients or how to choose the most suitable products. A training program “Success in Life Wholesaler Training” was instigated to repair this concern.

In 2008, we instituted a baseline curriculum requiring field delivery and a time commitment of six months. The program consisted of five modules covering life insurance, and a sixth for disability insurance. Wholesalers (with buy-in from field leaders) conducted the field delivery, teaching and coaching four or more offices one module per month, ultimately teaching all six modules in all offices. The audience was either new advisors (less than two years of industry experience), or low insurance sellers (determined by wholesaler and field leaders).

The Evaluation

For our program we determined value by two factors: increased sales and transforming non-sellers into sellers. Principally, the evaluation was to determine if the target audience gained the intended outcomes.


  • Did insurance sales increase by the advisors who attended the program, when (a) individually measured against previous year, and (b) compared to peers not having attended training?


  • What adjustments do we need in the training program, to make it more effective in the future?

The Blend

The program was high profile, affected many departments, and was extremely scrutinized by stakeholders. We determined that one model was insufficient for evaluation, so we blended several strong models to guide our evaluation activities and reinforce our report. To gain immediate responses from the trainees, we used Kirkpatrick and Kirkpatrick’s evaluation model (2009). To conduct in-depth analysis, we incorporated Brinkerhoff’s Success Case Method (2006). To frame our report, we used Scriven’s Key Evaluation Checklist (2007).

The models blended quantitative and qualitative data in order to determine value of the program. In the end we created a robust program evaluation that suited our needs, and those of our stakeholders.

The Results

Reach of Program:
72% of all target advisors took at least one module.

Kirkpatrick Level 1
The average score was 4.58 across all six modules (see Table 1); the lowest average was 4.44, the highest average was 4.67. At our company, a score of “4” is very good and a score of “5” is excellent.

Module L1 Score Number rcvd # who took Module %
Module 1 4.44 380 817 47%
Module 2 4.52 225 707 32%
Module 3 4.56 149 597 25%
Module 4 4.67 229 516 44%
Module 5 4.66 109 332 33%
Module 6 4.65 67 181 37%
Average/total 4.58 1159 3150 37%

Table 1. Reach and L1

Brinkerhoff/Kirkpatrick Level 3
We observed different levels of success cases (see Table 2). Even though some advisors were identified as low success cases, during the interviews most advisors stated that the training was helpful and needed. Most advisors provided at least one example of something they are doing differently now because of the training, and are having success with it.



High-success cases 32 10%
Low-success cases 12 4%
Possible success cases 40 13%
Indeterminate success cases 36 11%
All others (middle) 200 62%
Total answering survey 320  

Table 2. Brinkerhoff/Kirkpatrick L3

During the training and coaching period, trainees submitted 20-25% of all new policy business company-wide, which was a substantial improvement from their performance prior to the training and coaching period. However, after the coaching period was over, trainees’ sales returned to the pre-training and coaching levels (8-17%). We attributed this decline in their performance partially to a lack of continuous support through coaching and feedback. It is also supported by Brinkerhoff’s theory that 50% of program success is from posttraining coaching and feedback. We used these numbers to reinforce with leaders that trainees needed continued coaching after training.

Kirkpatrick Level 4
We used Kirkpatrick and Kirkpatrick’s (2009) definition of Level 4—Return on Expectations. Due to economic collapse, success was seen as any increase in sales, considering our competitors were 30-50% below last year’s comparables. We had success; most attendees increased sales, even by a point. Another sign of success was delivered when the company’s CEO stated “during the economic downturn we gained position entering the top 10 in our four core areas and in some of our insurance products we actually doubled our market share, and we were the only company in our industry that wasn’t downgraded by the rating agencies like Moody’s.” It was a success the leaders can see and communicate.

The Positive Impact

At the onset of our program, the economy changed (industries collapsed, our company restructured leading to smaller sales force, target audience, and number of field leaders), which changed the landscape. So, after we began interpreting the results, we were looking for Brinkerhoff’s “positive impact.” The material was well delivered, well received, and applied. The majority of advisors interviewed considered something of the program helped them drive sales, and trainees thought follow-up coaching would help keep the momentum of sales growing. And our blend of methods helped deliver the results to our business stakeholders.


Brinkerhoff, R. O. (2006). Telling training’s story: Evaluation made simple, credible, and effective. San Francisco: Berrett-Koehler.

Kirkpatrick, J. D., & Kirkpatrick, W. K. (2009). The Kirkpatrick four levels: A fresh look after 50 years. Retrieved from

Scriven, M. (2007). Key evaluation checklist. Available at

Beth McGoldrick is an instructional designer at the company for which the evaluation was conducted. She completed her master’s degree in Instructional and Performance Technology (IPT) in the fall of 2009. Beth may be contacted via e-mail at

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ISPI’s 50th Anniversary Around the Corner

The 50th Anniversary Taskforce
is asking for your help! We are building a repository of all things historic and ISPI related for THE Performance Improvement Conference 2012. If you have any photos, documents, videos, pictures of devices, or anything else you think would be of interest to display for ISPI’s 50th anniversary, please contact Guy Wallace ( or Lynn Kearny (

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CPT News from Around the World

Welcome New CPTs

  • Lisa Jasper, CPT, Administaff
  • Todd Conkright, CPT, Cornerstone Global Training & Performance Solutions
  • Wendy Carr, CPT, SPHR, Deloitte Consulting LLP

A CPT You Should Know

I want to introduce you to John Wilkinson, an energetic professional with focus. What is special about John is his passion for technology. I got to know him when he reached out to explain his interest in measuring confidence as a predictor of competence. John is an engaging facilitator, regardless of topic, audience, or venue. He brings out the best in any learner or performer, and leaves behind a legacy of leadership and a thirst for learning. Fortunately for his clients, John considers follow-up and ongoing availability essential to his work, and he embraces the educator’s credo: “To Teach Is to Touch a Life Forever.”

Early experiences as a competitor and coach in springboard and platform diving provided John with a solid awareness of the necessity for developing repeatable, measureable, and sustainable skills to build the foundation for achieving verifiable individual performance gains. Later involvements in business generally, and the manufacturing/logistics sector specifically, demanded a focus on establishing reliable people performance goals and organizational performance metrics.

John is often referred to as a “trainer’s trainer,” and the primary focus of his entire career has been a systematic merging of people, processes, and performance to create functional working environments; and to deliver, within those environments, engaging and enjoyable events and processes that serve to ensure knowledge and skill are verifiably acquired and transferred, in support of incremental performance improvement. Tying what is learned to practical, on-the-job application and performance gains is of crucial importance to John in measuring his own achievement and performance. When John discovered human performance technology (HPT), and certification through the ISPI, he admits his own performance bar was elevated through collaboration with fellow Certified Performance Technologists (CPTs).

John was quick to learn that valid assessment strategies that confirm progress and achievement through standardized processes provide the essential ingredients for performance improvement. He was also an early-adopter of technology applications for training and development and very quickly embraced computer-based training, blended learning, and mixed-media delivery methodologies. John has utilized many of the traditional instructor-led and more progressive online learning and assessment strategies to drive individual and organizational performance for many years as corporate training manager at Kellogg Company, and subsequently as director of training and development at DHL Express.

For John, multiple journeys through needs analysis to the implementation of strategic change, and corporate transition quests from present state to future or desired state, have revealed that “branded marketing”—the “retail version” of HPT—is closely associated with “branded learning.” People can be motivated to buy what they desire, and to learn and apply what they require, using very similar models and processes to ensure all participants arrive at their desired outcomes. This “discovery” has enabled John to make valuable performance improvement contributions outside of his traditional focus of serving the training and development, learning and performance, and education industries.

As an independent learning and performance consultant, John uses his knowledge, experiences, and discoveries to support contributions across many sectors of the business and industry spectrum, ranging from sales and marketing to supply chain logistics to health and safety, including formal college and university leadership education programs and coach officer training for a progressive and respected Ontario Police Service. There is evidence of success for each of his engagements and projects at every level.

John holds a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Education from the University of Western Ontario; a master’s in Education Administration from the University of Ottawa; represents the CSTD as a thought leader and Certified Training & Development Professional (CTDP); and is proudly recognized and accredited as a CPT. John delivered a 90-minute concurrent session at the IFTDO World Training Conference & Expo in Toronto, October 2009, and most recently presented a similar paper on “Measuring Confidence: The Missing Link in Performance Improvement” at the ISPI’s International Conference in San Francisco, April 22, 2010. John may be reached at

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Chapter Corner
Chapter Leaders Workshop

by Gary DePaul, Chair, Chapter Partnership Committee

At THE Performance Improvement Conference, the Chapter Partnership Committee (CPC) hosts a Chapter Leaders Workshop (CLW). Our goal is for chapter leaders to share best practices through presentations, exercises, and networking.

Reflection: 2010 CLW

At last year’s workshop, we did this by focusing on how to become an outstanding chapter. Below are some of the topics along with YouTube links to the videos:

  • Chapter trends (Gary DePaul)
  • One Society strategy (Paul Cook: Part 1 | Part 2)
  • Developing a living strategy (Rose Noxon)
  • Presentation to the Board (facilitated by Eileen Banchoff) Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3
  • Money (Bonnie Beresford)
  • Leadership (Dick Handshaw)
  • Meetings/programs (Patti Radakovich)
  • Marketing (Rhea Fix)
  • Membership (Sue Czeropski)
  • Volunteering (Mark Laurien) (Stephanie Fuentes)

In addition, Miki Lane (Part 1 and Part 2) talked with chapter leaders, and the CPC sponsored a luncheon for the chapter leader participants and ISPI Board. To close the program, Thiagi facilitated a “What are my takeaways?” exercise.

The 2011 CLW Team

For 2011, the CPC is forming a team to create and deliver the CLW. If you would like to join Jim Craumer and Jean Strosinski, contact Gary DePaul at for more information.

2011 CLW Details

  • Saturday, April 9 (see the Conference Schedule for the full timeline)
  • 8:30 am to 5:00 pm
  • Session will be videotaped.
  • This is free for chapter leaders.
  • See conference registration form to sign up.

Chapter Events

Phoenix, AZ—December 1, 2010
Create a Pecha Kucha Presentation Tonight

Tampa Bay, FL—December 2, 2010
OPAL Awards Dinner

St. Louis, MO—December 3, 2010
Best HPT Tools & Innovations from 2010

Minnesota—December 6
MNISPI Book Banter

San Diego, CA—December 8, 2010
What Every Training Professional Must Know About Learning 2.0

Austin, TX—December 9, 2010
Curvey Performance Management

Charlotte, NC—December 9, 2010
Instructional & Performance Support - Panel & Poster Session

Washington, DC—December 9, 2010
When They Must Get it Right: Planner and Sidekick Performance Support

Orange County, CA—December 14, 2010
Nutcracker Barrel Event 2010

Vancouver, Canada—December 14
2nd Annual Holiday Social

Denver, CO—December 15, 2010
Holiday Event

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Performance Improvement Journal Seeks Editor

The International Society for Performance Improvemen
t is currently looking for an ISPI member who can demonstrate an extensive knowledge of human performance technology (HPT), has a professional network inside and outside the field, and possesses an editorial review ability to be the editor of Performance Improvement journal. The editor is responsible for acquiring, reviewing, and selecting manuscripts and contributing suggestions and ideas toward the editorial direction. The editor works with authors and potential authors to maintain the highest standard of editorial content. In addition, the editor works directly with the publications manager, who is responsible for all production and distribution. The editor reports to the executive director, who serves as the publisher of Performance Improvement journal.

The position requires a two-year commitment, commencing in April 2011. The editor will receive a $10,000 a year stipend as compensation for the invested time and effort as well as hotel and registration compensation for the April 2012 and April 2013 ISPI annual conferences. The editor must be able to attend the April 2011, April 2012, and April 2013 annual conferences.

Performance Improvement is published 10 times a year and has a circulation of more 5,000 members, subscribers, and institutions. Click here for job description and application to download. The deadline for application submissions is January 5, 2011.

You will be notified of your selection status, or if the selection committee requires additional information, by February 8, 2011.

ISPI intends to have the editor selected by early March, so the individual will have ample time to plan any Annual Conference activities. The editor is responsible for paying any fees associated with attending THE Performance Improvement Conference 2011 in Orlando, Florida on April 10-13, 2011. However, hotel and registration compensation for the April 2012 and April 2013 is provided by ISPI (travel costs remain the responsibility of the editor).

If you have any questions, please call 301.587.8570 x106 or email All materials must be received by January 5, 2011.

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Lights, Camera, Action! THE Performance Improvement Conference 99-Second Video Contest

An exciting video contest for the 2011 ISPI conference is now available! In 99 seconds or less, share your views on the value of ISPI membership and attendance at THE Performance Improvement Conference in 2011 with a short video clip titled: “This is ISPI!” You have the opportunity to win prizes such as pre-recorded SkillCast webinars and one-year ISPI memberships! All you need is a digital video camera and up to 99 seconds to speak passionately about the value of the ISPI conference. For example you might create a video that completes any of the following sentences:

  • My most valuable or memorable conference experience in previous years was…
  • The reason I wouldn’t miss THE Performance Improvement conference is…
  • If I only have 99 seconds to explain to someone what HPT is, I would say…
  • What I love about the conference each year is…
  • Here’s what I applied back on the job that made a difference…and I learned it all at the conference!
  • The conference networking is invaluable because…
  • With 99 seconds to “sell my boss, my spouse, my partner, my kids, my pets” on going to the conference, I would say…

Think about the speakers, educational sessions, and networking! Be creative and have fun!

Provided the video’s message, accuracy, appropriateness of theme, creativity, and entertainment value promote THE Performance Improvement Conference, up to six winners will be selected at random and notified by email on or about February 19, 2011.

The contest closes on February 11, 2011 at 11:59 pm (EST). Contest information, including submission guidelines, is posted on the ISPI 2011 conference website.

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Invitation to Participate in Research Studies

Instructional Design Practice Survey

My name is Ingrid Thompson-Sellers, and I am a graduate student of Instructional Design and Technology at Georgia State University in Atlanta, GA. My advisor, Dr. Brendan Calandra, and I are conducting a study that investigates your perceptions of corporate instructional design practices, and we would like to ask for your input via an online survey. I intend to use the results of this study to help inform instructional designers, trainers, and hiring managers about what traits, skills, and design practices are valued by those in the workplace.

This survey should take no longer than 30 minutes to complete. Please be assured your responses will be held in the strictest confidence. All responses will be reported only in aggregate and no identifying information will be reported. Once we have completed the study, and to thank you, we will send the survey results.

Because the validity of our results depends on the number of respondents, your participation is crucial to the success of the study and my dissertation. If you agree to participate in this study, please use this link to access our online form:

Please do not hesitate to contact me at 404.502.6294 or or Dr. Calandra at if you have any questions.

How Instruction is Actually Designed

My name is Dr. James Marken and I am an assistant professor at Old Dominion University. Dr. Gary Morrison and I are conducting research on the practice of instructional design in various types of organizations and would appreciate your assistance.

We invite you to complete a brief online survey regarding your work environment and how you perform instructional design tasks. It will take you approximately 20 minutes to complete this survey, and participants will have the option of entering a random drawing to receive one of three $50 VISA gift cards.

I encourage you to participate by visiting

The results of this study will be summarized in a future issue of PerformanceXpress. All information collected about you during the course of the study will be kept without any personal identifiers, making it completely anonymous. If you choose to participate in the drawing, you will need to provide your name and email address on the questionnaire. This information is not linked to the survey data.

Please email or call my graduate research assistant, Don Robison, if you have questions about participating in or learning more about this research. Don may be reached at or 757.270.1742.

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ISPI Career Center

The International Society for Performance Improvement’s
Career Center will revolutionize how you search for jobs and source candidates! Our job board, powered by career services leader JobTarget, makes it easier than ever for ISPI members to enhance their careers and stay connected within the performance improvement community. Below you will find the most recent job postings added to ISPI’s Career Center:

Director of Professional Development, Training, and Research
Melmark New England
Job Type: Full Time
Job Location: Andover, MA 01810

HR Measurement Specialist
Westfield Insurance
Job Type: Full Time
Job Location: Wesfield Center, OH 44251

Instructional Developer (onsite contractor)
Plastipak Packaging
Job Type: Full Time
Job Location: Plymouth, MI 48170

Training Manager
Job Type: Full Time
Job Location: Evans, CO 80620

Training Producer
Job Type: Full Time
Job Location: Carpinteria, CA 93013

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ISPI logo



Performance Marketplace

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 our marketing department at or 301.587.8570.

Online Performance Improvement Bookstore. ISPI and John Wiley & Sons have partnered to offer professionals in the field the best selection of performance improvement resources. ISPI members save 15% on all book purchases (professional and personal)!

ISPI @ Amazon. ISPI has created a one-stop shop for all your performance improvement needs. Here we have boks written by ISPI members, CPTs, E-Documents, and featured books of the month. All purchases over $25 are eligible for free shipping.

Handbook of Improving Performance in the Workplace—Three Volume Series. Featuring best-in-field researchers, thinkers, and practitioners across several disciplines and geographic boundaries, each volume provides a current review of all information presently available for the three core areas of improving performance in the workplace.


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

Magazines, Newsletters, and Journals
Performance Improvement journal is available to subscribers in print and online through John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Order your subscription today.

Performance Improvement Quarterly is a peer-reviewed journal created to stimulate professional discussion in the field and to advance the discipline of HPT through literature reviews, experimental studies with a scholarly base, and case studies. Discounted to ISPI members.

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ISPI Membership: Join or Renew Today!

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, simply click here.

Newsletter Submission Guidelines

ISPI is looking for
Human Performance Technology (HPT) articles (approximately 500–700 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 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

About PerformanceXpress

Feel free to forward
ISPI’s PerformanceXpress newsletter to your colleagues or anyone you think may benefit from the information. If you are reading someone else’s PerformanceXpress, send your complete contact information to, and you will be added to the PerformanceXpress email list.

PerformanceXpress is an ISPI member benefit designed to build community, stimulate discussion, and keep you informed of the Society’s activities and events. This newsletter is published monthly and will be emailed to you at the beginning of each month.

If you have any questions or comments, please contact John Chen at

Stay informed: Add to your Address Book and/or Safe Senders list to ensure you don’t miss important announcements and valuable offers from ISPI!

1400 Spring Street, Suite 400
Silver Spring, MD 20910 USA
Phone: 301.587.8570
Fax: 301.587.8573


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