On-the-Job Training (OJT): An Intro

On-the-Job Training (OJT) Image

On-the-job training, also commonly known as OJT, is a time-tested, popular, and effective workforce training solution. In fact, as we’ll discuss later in this article, it’s probably the single most commonly used form of training in workplaces. OJT is also sometimes known as direct instruction.

OJT comes in different forms, as you’ll learn below. It can be more or less successful depending on the several factors, including how it’s designed and the participants. We’ll cover that below, too. And it can make up different percentages of an employee’s overall workforce learning & development experience. Yep, we’ll touch on that below.

In this article, we’ll take a deeper dive into on-the-job training (OJT), explaining what it is, why it’s popular, why workplaces should use it, and how to use it so that it’s most effective in terms of helping workers develop skills they’ll need to perform their jobs effectively and contribute to the overall success of the company they work for.

If you know of us as a producer of online training courses for workforce training, you may be surprised we’re writing about OJT. But we strongly believe OJT is an important part of an overall blended learning solution for workforce training, and that’s why our learning management system (LMS) is designed to help administer not only online learning but also OJT and other types of training, such as instructor-led classroom training.

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Story-based Training and Scenario-Based Training: An Interview with Anna Sabramowicz

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Note: If you’d prefer to listen/watch this discussion, there’s a recorded video at the bottom.

Today’s an exciting day because we got superstar-rock star eLearning developer Anna Sabramowicz of eLearner Engaged to sit and talk with us about using storytelling and scenarios to create more engaging, inspiring, motivating learning events.

Many of you already know that Anna is famous for creating the Broken Coworker eLearning course and winning an Articulate Storyline Guru Contest Award for that course.

In this interview, she’s going to tell us how she got started using storytelling and scenarios in training, tell us why we should consider doing the same in some of our own training materials, and give us some tips for creating and telling good stories and setting up good scenarios for learning.

We’d really like to thank Anna for taking the time to talk with us and to share all her expertise in storytelling, scenarios, and training, and for giving all the people who read this article some simple tips for doing the same themselves as well as for inspiring us to do so. We’ve included more information about how to follow Anna at the bottom of this article.

We hope all the readers out there try to add some story-based and scenario-based training into their overall workforce training program as part of a blended learning solution that uses other kind of training, too. Give it a shot–it will be fun

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Evidence-Based Training: Learning Maximizers & Learning Myths (An Interview with Dr. Will Thalheimer)

In this article, the continuation of our series of interviews with noted learning researcher Dr. Will Thalheimer, we’re going to discuss evidence-based training methods and learning myths with no supporting evidence.

The focus on evidence-based training methods is central to Dr. Thalheimer’s career and work, and it’s been the central focus of our earlier articles with him, which looked at smile sheets, spaced learning, and elearning effectiveness.

In this article, you’ll read about three three models for applying evidence-based training, about some learning methods that many think are proven and effective despite a lack of evidence supporting that, and about the importance of fighting the good fight to identify and use learning methods that truly support the learner.

And since this is the final article in the four-article series, we’d like to issue a big thank you to Dr. Thalheimer for his time and knowledge, both of which have been greatly appreciated. Don’t forget to check out his new model for learning evaluation, which he finished while we were writing this series. Maybe he’ll be nice enough to come back and discuss that with us in the future.

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Evidence-Based Training: Is eLearning More or Less Effective than Classroom Training? (An Interview with Dr. Will Thalheimer)

Question for you: what’s more effective in aiding employee learning–elearning courses or classroom training?

We asked the noted learning expert Dr. Will Thalheimer to answer that question. And presenting information from his Does eLearning Work? white paper and metastudy, the simple answer he gave was: classroom training < elearning < blended learning solutions.

(If it’s been a while since you last attended math class, that means classroom training is less effective than elearning, which is in turn less effective than blended learning solutions that use both classroom training and elearning.)

But….there’s much more to the answer than that. And in fact, that simple presentation of the answer isn’t just incomplete, it’s misleading.

So we encourage you to read this interview with Dr. Thalheimer to learn more about the effectiveness of elearning and classroom training, and to learn more about how to make both more effective.

If you’ve been reading along lately, you know we’ve also published interviews with Dr. Thalheimer on the topics of smile sheets and spaced learning.

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Evidence-Based Training Methods and Spaced Learning (An Interview with Dr. Will Thalheimer)

In this article, we’re going to continue our ongoing series of interviews with Dr. Will Thalheimer, and we’ll be getting some tips for using spaced learning to better support learner memory in workforce learning & development efforts. For those of you keeping track at home, you may know that in an earlier article, Dr. Thalheimer gave us some best practices for writing level 1 “smile sheets,” and we’ll continue the focus on evidence-based training methods in this interview with the good doctor.

For those who aren’t familiar with spaced learning, which is also known as spaced practice, the idea is to have the learner re-engage with the learner material at different moments over time. There’s a lot of evidence that shows this really reduces the human tendency to forget job training very quickly, meaning workers will be more likely to remember the training and later apply it on the job to create the desired behavior the training was intended to create.

If you’re not familiar with Dr. Will Thalheimer, he’s a well-known and very credible research- and evidence-based learning professional who runs the Will at Work blog and generally shares useful information for learning professionals. Many, many thanks to Dr. Thalheimer for participating in this interview, the earlier interview, on smile sheets, and two more to be published soon.

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ANSI/ASSE Z490.2 Update: A Key Definition

ANSI Z490.2 Image

A little-known poet once asked “what’s in a name?”

It’s not often that you get to refer to William Shakespeare and Romeo and Juliet when writing about safety training, but events at the most recent meeting of the committee to create ANSI/ASSE Z490.2 as a complement to the existing Z490.1 standard, gave me an opportunity to do just that. (Those events plus the tireless efforts my junior high English teacher, that is.)

But why, you might ask? Because we spent a good deal of time talking about the definition of “online safety training,” which is especially relevant since that’s what the standard is about.

Defining Online Safety Training

Over time, in discussions about the standard and in various drafts of the standard, we’ve been using terms like virtual training, distance training, elearning, online training, and more. And we’ve discussed the amazing variety of types of training this includes–streaming online videos; HTML web pages; elearning courses in SCORM, AICC, and/or xAPI formats; augmented reality viewed through smart glasses; virtual reality; simulations; and more.

So this notion of “what is online safety training” really isn’t as simple as it first appears. Although, perhaps it smells just as sweet by any name.

What are your opinions?

Stay tuned for more about Z490.2 in our next update.

Online Safety Training Buyer's Guide Checklist

Online Safety Training Buyer’s Guide Checklist

Learn how to evaluate the different online safety training solutions that exist to find one that best fits your company’s needs with our FREE informative guide and checklist.

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Online Safety Training Buyer's Guide Checklist

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Lifelong Learning & Learning to Learn (Arun Pradhan on Learning and the Jobs of the Future)

lifelong learning and learning to learn image

We’re pretty excited because Arun Pradhan, a self-described “learning geek,” a senior learning and performance consultant at DeakinCo., the winner of the Australian Institute of Training and Development’s 2017 L&D Professional of the Year Award, and the creator of the amazing Learn2Learn app has agreed to speak with us about the importance of learning ability in the workplace, being a learning organization, and in particular how employees can learn to learn and become lifelong learners.

If you’re reading this article, you probably already know the importance of learning at work and have a sense that it will become increasingly important in the future. Maybe you’re a manager who wants to learn to improve at your own job while also seeing how you can facilitate employee learning at the same time. Or maybe you’re an employee who knows the value of learning to improve your career opportunities.

Either way, we think you’ll benefit from and enjoy Arun’s insights, and we want to thank him very much for participating in this interview and for all the works he does in workforce L&D.

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Evidence-Based Training Methods and Smile Sheets (An Interview with Dr. Will Thalheimer)

It’s always a good idea to use training methods that are (1) based in evidence and proven to be effective and (2) focused on improving performance on the job.

Dr. Will Thalheimer is one of the leading research experts on evidence-based and performance-focused training methods, and he’s been kind enough to grant us an interview that we’ll present as a series of four related articles.

In this article, our interview with Dr. Thalheimer will focus on smile sheets.

You may already know the term smile sheet, but if you don’t, you’re probably familiar with the concept. You know those surveys trainers hand out to learners who have just completed some form of training? And the learner then uses the survey to evaluate the training event, materials, and instructor? That’s a smile sheet, also known as a training evaluation sheet, reaction sheet, or a Kirkpatrick level 1 evaluation.

These learner evaluations are sometimes called smile sheets, however, because there’s a belief that the learners may not use them to put down truthful, objective, helpful information, but instead just write nice comments about the training and the instructor that are meant to make the trainer smile about supposedly having done a good job.

So you see the problem. If a smile sheet is nothing but a bunch of well-intended but fake or meaningless “smiles,” we’re not drawing helpful information from learners about the training material that we can use to evaluate the training and revise it if necessary so our training has a desired influence on worker job performance. And that’s why Dr. Thalheimer has done research on smile sheets, first to determine that as commonly written they’re often meaningless and second to give us tips on how to write better smile sheets that will help improve performance.

If all this is ringing a bell for you, you may be familiar with Dr. Thalheimer’s great book Performance-Focused Smile Sheets: A Radical Rethinking of a Dangerous Art Form or with the earlier article we wrote exploring his book on how to write better smile sheets.

So let’s check out the interview. Remember this is one part of a longer interview with Dr. Thalheimer, and we’ll have additional articles in which he discusses:

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9 Great Uses for Mobile Training at Work

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Organizations are becoming increasingly interested in mobile training these days (also called mobile learning and M-learning).

Which is great, because you can use mobile training in a lot of positive ways. But on the other hand, you don’t want to just rush into it, believing that this new technology is the silver bullet that will make training magical in the same way that people made the same claims about radio, TV, movies, filmstrips, video tapes, DVDs, the Internet, and more.

So in this article, we’re going to list out for you some productive ways to use mobile training at work. Please add any additional ones from your experience as well.

You might also want to check out our mobile training apps or our 3 Fundamental Uses for Mobile Safety Training article.

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The Training Within Industry (TWI) Job Relations Program (JR): Making Better Managers

Training Within Industry (TWI) Job Relations Program Image

Not that long ago, we wrote an an overview of Training Within Industry (TWI).

As that article explains, TWI was a job training program created by the U.S. government during World War II. And, as it turns out, it had a strong influence on the development of  lean manufacturing in Japan.

TWI includes four primary components–Job Methods, Job Instruction, Job Relations (these three are together known as the “J Programs”), and Program Development.

In this post, we’re going to take a closer look at the Job Relations program, also known as the JR program.

You might also find these other posts about TWI interesting:

In addition, check out these articles on lean manufacturing:

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How to Create Better Workforce Development Training

                 

Workforce development is essential for businesses and other organizations in today’s economy. And while there are many aspects to great workforce development, starting with successful onboarding of new employees, workforce development training is a key part of the effort as well.

Yet many organizations don’t have an expertise in training development, and aren’t familiar with the nuts and bolts of how to go about it.

In this article, we’ll give you a simple blueprint to follow when developing workforce development training. Following these steps will get you far, and once you’ve got this down you can learn more and further refine your workforce development training as well as other aspects of your workforce development efforts.

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Tips for Beating the Training Forgetting Curve

Combatting the Training Forgetting Curve Image

In a recent article, we introduced you to the well-documented forgetting curve in training and explained that something called spaced practice can help reduce or even eliminate the forgetting curve.

In this article, we’re going to give you a few more tips for how to design training that combats the forgetting curve and creates memorable training that employees will not only understand during the training, but that they’ll also remember after the training and put to use on the job.

Sounds like good stuff to know, no?

Let’s get started, then.

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