Table of Contents

Three Magic Questions to Ask in order to Map Out a Learning Program

3-questions

Today’s the day.

The new employee orientation at my organization has been in existence for a while now, but everyone seems to be in agreement that it needs a fairly significant overhaul.

A little later today, I’ll be meeting with a variety of colleagues in order to talk about this overhaul. As we jump into this conversation, I’ll be using the following three questions – which can be used for most training programs (not just new employee orientation) – to lend some structure to this dialogue:  

  1. What would happen if we didn’t bother having a new hire orientation program? This question is an essential place for our conversation to begin. There’s been some questions as to whether new employee orientation holds any value at all. Our staff is driven and our teams are leanly staffed (meaning that managers want their new hires at their desks and contributing as soon as possible). If we don’t have a good answer for this question, our meeting about new hire orientation should probably be a short one!
  2. How will we know our new hire orientation program is successful? I have a friend who calls this “the money question.” It’s easy to say: “Let’s have a training program.” But if you don’t know what success will look like, how will you ever know that your investment in the initiative has paid off? Ideally, the answer(s) to this question will have both qualitative and quantitative measures.
  3. What do we need to do in order to get to “success” for this program? The order in which these questions are asked and answered matters. Without an answer to the Question #1 (why bother?), the conversation need not go any further. Without an answer to Question #2 (“the money question”), you can’t be sure what you’re trying to achieve. Once you know what you’d like to achieve, and only once you know what you’d like to achieve, then you can jump into question #3 (how do we get there?). I have a lot of creative ideas floating around in my mind, but they’re going to need to somehow fit into a strategy that will support “the money question”, otherwise my creative ideas become superfluous.

I like to keep it simple, and three guiding questions will help to keep today’s conversation simple and focused.

What am I missing? Are there other questions you would be asking if you were in my shoes?


Going to the Online Learning Conference this week? Don’t forget to check out Mike Taylor and I as we present some ideas that marketing and advertising experts use and that training professionals should steal. We’ll take the stage on Wednesday at 8:15am!

Articles Similar to Three Magic Questions to Ask in order to Map Out a Learning Program

Learning & Development
Brian Washburn

How “Mature” is Your Training Program?

How strategic is your training program? How outcome-oriented, governed or sustainable is it? In today’s podcast, Danielle Duran talks about how to objectively measure your training program in those four key areas.

Learning & Development
Brian Washburn

A Conversation on Inclusive Training Design with Jolene Jang

When I participated in a DEI-focused session led by Jolene Jang at a recent conference, I just kept shaking my head. She would point out specific ways to make learning more inclusive, and I immediately thought: there’s another thing I’m not doing!

Learning & Development
Brian Washburn

Where Sales Enablement Meets L&D

Natalie Mazzie, an experienced sales enablement professional, feels there is a lot that general L&D folks can learn from the sales enablement field. Here’s our conversation.

Maria Leggett on learning & development resumes
Learning & Development
Brian Washburn

A Learning & Development Resume that Gets Noticed

When you’re applying for an L&D job, how do you best position yourself to get a call from a recruiter or hiring manager? Experienced HR professional, Maria Leggett, offers her insights in today’s podcast.

Subscribe to Get Updates from Endurance Learning

Brian Washburn, Author

Brian Washburn
CEO & Chief Ideas Guy

Enter your information below and we’ll send you the latest updates from our blog. Thanks for following!

Find Your L&D Career Path

Explore the range of careers to understand what role might be a good fit for your L&D career.

Enter your email below and we’ll send you the PDF of the What’s Possible in L&D Worksheet.

What's possible in L&D

Let's Talk Training!

Brian Washburn

Brian Washburn
CEO & Chief Ideas Guy

Enter your information below and we’ll get back to you soon.

Download the Feedback Lesson Plan

Enter your email below and we’ll send you the lesson plan as a PDF.

feedback lesson plan
MS Word Job Aid Template

Download the Microsoft Word Job Aid Template

Enter your email below and we’ll send you the Word version of this template.

Download the Free Lesson Plan Template!

Enter your email below and we’ll send you a Word document that you can start using today!

free lesson plan template
training materials checklist

Download the Training Materials Checklist

Enter your email below and we’ll send you the PDF of the Training Materials Checklist.

Subscribe to Endurance Learning for updates

Get regular updates from the Endurance Learning team.