[T]raditional efforts to create organizational learning may be thwarted if employees are not aware of the habits they have to unlearn.

In this article, John Boudreau explores the link between people’s shopping and work habits.  He cites work by a predictive analytics scientist that shows how difficult it is to break habits.  The scientist says the difficulty is caused because the habits have become unconscious.  The author goes on to cite research by MIT that “suggests the brain shuts down once the habit is formed to preserve conscious brain space.”

This is useful for anyone who is responsible for training others.  A common mistake trainers make is to assume the learner is prepared to receive the information in the intended manner.  If the proper groundwork is not in place the learner may not be in the right frame of mind to retain it, let alone change their behavior.

The quote above mentions the likely need to unlearn existing habits.  Unlearning may not be as hard as it sounds.  In fact, all that may be required is pointing out the need to the audience.  Below is a 3 minute video based on a classic instructional design strategy developed by Robert Gagné.  In it you will learn 9 steps that will help you organize and improve your training.  What I like about the video is that it attempts to demonstrate the instructional strategy while teaching you about it.

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