Learning that Sticks: Enhancing Business Impact of Training through a Team-Based Approach to Transfer of Learning

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One of the most persistent challenges faced by training practitioners is how to enhance transfer of learning from performance improvement programs into workplace practice. We receive accolades for crafting provocative training events, yet hit the wall when we discover that few of our trainees integrate new knowledge into practice. In fact, they
reverted to their pre-training routines. Lack of transfer of learning is a dilemma; studies report that 60 to 90 per cent of learning acquired through training is not applied to the job (Phillips & Phillips, 2002). Hence, the question – how do we translate theory into practice and make it stick? The purpose of this article is three-fold: introduce a transfer of learning model that I developed and use to facilitate training, share results from a 12-month study testing the model’s effectiveness as a transfer intervention, and propose implications for practice. Of specific importance in evaluating the model is measuring its business impact to justify financial investment in training.