By Ross Tartell
Most of us have had the disappointing experience of working hard to collect data, analyze it, and then present the results to lukewarm levels of reception. In this highly competitive and cost-constrained market, great data is not enough to build the management commitment and sponsorship so critical to training success.
Wendy Heckelman of WLH Consulting points out that the success of any data collection process depends on three interrelated factors:
Here is the key to success: Incorporate a stakeholder analysis into the planning stage of the training needs analysis. A stakeholder analysis can add critical intelligence about politics and logistics—and can transform your effort from “so what?” to “must have!”
Use a stakeholder analysis when you want to:
Steps to Success
There are many different versions of a stakeholder analysis. This one keeps it simple. Here are the steps:
Champion: Engage these stakeholders through active participation in the data collection process and include them, as appropriate, in governance of the process. The engaged support of these powerful individuals or groups is key to your success.
Blocker: Attempt to increase the level of support from this group through deliberate engagement and consultation. Use champions to influence and increase their support—or to mitigate their negative impact.
Advocate: Use this group to carry your message. Keep them informed on a regular basis so you maintain their support. But do not spend significant time or resources consulting with them unless they have significant content to contribute.
Indifferent: Do the minimum to keep them informed, and occasionally monitor their status to minimize potential surprises, but use your time and resources elsewhere.
Organizations face enormous challenges. The need for an engaged and well-educated workforce that is able to overcome obstacles is greater than ever. Incorporating a stakeholder analysis into your project plan will enable you to use the data you collect to create the great training so critical for success.
Ross Tartell is Learning & Development Manager – North America for GE Capital Real Estate. He is also an adjunct associate professor of Psychology and Education at Columbia University. Dr. Tartell has expertise in the areas of learning and development, talent planning, and organizational development. He received his M.B.A. in Management and his Ph.D. in Social Psychology from Columbia University.