Learning model 70:20:10; A combination of learning and development

We all want to be good at our job, so we learn and keep learning. But how can we learn more effectively? We are familiar with class-based learning. But sometimes there are more effective ways. With the 70:20:10 learning model, formal courses take the least amount of learning time.

This article examines the 70:20:10 learning model and the benefits and challenges of using it. Here are some practical ways to learn outside of the classroom and combine this method with traditional teaching.

What is 70:20:10?

The 70:20:10 model defines the right balance between different ways of learning and development in the workplace. According to the Association 70:20:10,  learning happens as follows:

  • 70% by experience and through daily tasks, challenges and exercises
  • 20% through social learning, in person or online education
  • 10% by acquiring education and passing the relevant courses

This model was developed by Professor Allen Toff, Michael Lombardo, and Robert Eichinger at the Center for Creative Leadership and the Bureau of Labor Statistics. All three found that extracurricular learning, especially self-directed voluntary learning, was more common and effective. Most employers, however, have either given little or no recognition to the model and have not supported it at all.

70:20:10 Despite its computational title, it is not a formula for definite success that must be pursued strictly. But refers to the importance given to each domain. The purpose of this model is to encourage leaders and managers and their team members to see Learning and Development (L&D) as a core part of their day-to-day role, not as an optional add-on or something that only the Learning and Development Office does.

At the same time, 70:20:10 does not mean that organizations should abandon their formal training programs. Instead, they can redesign the learning process so that employees can achieve their development goals through a combination of methods. This will take place with the help of their managers and co-workers.

Using the learning model 70:20:10

According to Nigel Paine, management and change consultant, any organization that use 70:20:10 properly needs to change its whole mindset. For example, as a manager, you may not want your team members to attend formal training courses and get absent from work, but you should know that it is better to invest in and let your team members learn.

Learning model 70:20:10
Learning model 70:20:10

Gain experience

Keep in mind that 70% of what your team members learn comes from hands-on experience or on-the-job. So you should think about what kind of tasks to entrust to whom and at what level of difficulty, and with what deadline and quality standards.

For example, tasks may be large or small, but when put together, they will teach the team member the skill set he or she needs to deliver a complete process. But whatever you want your team to do must be actual to achieve a real goal for the team and the organization.

Learning and developing is more than just absorbing new information or trying out new techniques. In fact, learning and development are about using our findings to get things done better or faster. To do this, it is better to set a specific goal and time to practice. This learning method makes it easy for you to walk through this path. 

Expose yourself to learning

20% of the learning that comes from exposure can be by doing pre-defined tasks or simulating new tasks.

Imagine that a member of your team is doing a task but not only does not know the key concept but continues to make mistakes or can not understand how the task relates to the larger goal behind it. This is where you can ask him or her to step aside and help a more experienced colleague do the task so that he or she can experience the true meaning of the task and the impact it makes.

You can also advise him to register on an online forum or one of these on-demand learning resources. In such places, he can ask his questions independently. You can also use question and answer and guidance skills to help the person find some answers. Perhaps the new task is a step in front of someone to help them achieve the primary goal.

By implementing the 70:20:10 learning approach, your organization’s Learning and Development (L&D) department is likely to have a less guided approach to training. Still, they will be more available whenever you and your team members need their advice and guidance. In particular, they can help you assess the quality of this wide range of available and growing resources and make better choices.

Seek training

In learning skills, sometimes nothing can replace formal study with a qualified instructor, whether it is a difficult skill such as using a new computer program or a soft skill such as communicating. This means spending time outside the workplace so that we can focus and delve deeper into the issue or try high-risk work in a safe environment.

Learn more: What are Soft Skills and How Transforms Your Life?

Sometimes it is even necessary to learn in a class and get a certificate. For example, when a member of a group has to learn the required legal or industrial standards.

Your role as a manager

In this 10% of  70:20:10 learning model process, your role as a manager is threefold. you must:

  • Make sure the training is done correctly;
  • Prepare the group member to make the most of future training programs;
  • Help him reinforce and apply his new knowledge and skills when he returns to the workplace.

If the presumed member of the group is worried about the effect of being absent on his / her workload and other group members, he/she will have difficulty in learning and may not even be able to complete the course successfully. So you need to encourage everyone to plan for this break and help them understand the importance of this training and not feel reluctant to take the course.

If he attends the course without talking to the manager about what he needs to learn to help himself and the team achieve the goal, he may still have trouble. It’s better for him to have a pre-course assignment that prepares him mentally and practically to start the course. So do this as part of 20% of the exposure time and exempt him from other work.

When he comes back from training, do not let him return to his old habits. Instead, ask him to apply what he has learned and share it with his colleagues. Discuss any training-related issues, such as the need for new equipment, procedures and communication with other groups, and engaging the whole group with the changes.

This will help you to implement the 70:20:10 learning model fully.

Different members of your group will probably have to take on different tasks, access various resources, and work with a variety of people. Thus, help them participate in different courses to meet their personal development and learning needs. Do not make all participate in the same program!

Learning model 70:20:10

Benefits 70:20:10

In the past, in-service learning was considered ineffective because it prevented group members from engaging in training.

Furthermore, there was the risk that one of those people who was tired of life, in the form of compassionate cooperation, would teach them to move forward with no motivation instead of showing them how to be the best.

In contrast, today’s communication technologies are increasingly entertaining, meaning you can do your job and learn simultaneously. The Internet has made it easy to access professionals and high-quality content from around the world. Organizations trust their employees more than ever and encourage them to share their skills with others, even beyond the group and office boundaries. So you no longer need to memorize and remember vast amounts of information about your work. You just have to know where to find them when you need them.

Your source may be a team member or colleague or manager or intranet of an organization or a demand-driven learning or service management system, or even social media; It does not matter. However, learning can occur at any time and place, under the guidance of anyone, instead of at specific times and areas away from the workplace, and only through formal instructors.

Welcoming the use of 70:20:10 can make a skilled and agile group and organization. Learning becomes a habit instead of a solution. In this way, instead of resisting or fearing change, people will look for knowledge or skills that will help them do their jobs better.

Challenges of the 70:20:10 learning model 

It may be tempting for organizations to misinterpret the 70:20:10 model and reduce their investment in learning and development, believing that learning will occur naturally. And perhaps members of the in-service learning group see it as a worthless option and take a negative approach. So you need to effectively evaluate this process to prevent this from happening and build trust.

In this less guiding model, you should encourage your team members to talk to you about the knowledge and skills they want to develop and share their views but be aware of administrative guidelines. For example, if you allow people to use cell phones or access insecure content at work, you may be challenging organizational rules and culture.

Learning means change, and changes can be difficult, so you should encourage and support any examples of learning you see in your group. Ask group members to share their observations, ideas, and success stories. Celebrate achievements every day and plan for official rewards.



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