Leveraging the Find & Follow Training and Performance Framework

This framework is designed to move businesses away from the pitfalls of tribal knowledge and toward a streamlined process of rapid knowledge transfer.

If you were to onboard new employees this week, how long would it take before they could confidently handle operational tasks on their own?

For one organization in southern California, it was taking 12 months.

What about if you were to implement some simple but important changes to your processes and procedures? How long would it take before employees fully applied those changes without constantly being reminded and corrected by supervisors?

For a business in Texas, it was taking two weeks.

If that sounds similar to what’s happening in your organization, it’s safe to assume you are operating on tribal knowledge. And it’s killing your operational efficiency, leading to:

  • New hire training and onboarding taking much longer than it should.
  • Supervisors being overwhelmed by an onslaught of mistakes to fix and questions to answer.
  • Teams taking forever to adapt to any changes made to processes or procedures.

In today’s fast-paced business environment, you cannot rely on “word of mouth” for transferring operational knowledge from those who have it to those who need it. You need a more efficient transfer method.

The Find & Follow Training and Performance Framework does just that. It is designed to move businesses away from the pitfalls of tribal knowledge and toward a streamlined process of rapid knowledge transfer.

When the organization in southern California applied the Find & Follow Training and Performance Framework, it was able to cut the time it takes new hires to be proficient from 12 months down to 30 days. And when the company in Texas applied Find & Follow, it decreased the time it takes to adopt changes from 2 weeks to 60 minutes.

Clearly, effective knowledge transfer has a significant impact.


The Find & Follow Framework is built on three core beliefs:

  1. We can achieve more by memorizing less.

2. We learn best by doing.

3. We can clarify complexity.

The goal is to reduce cognitive load, promote active learning, and clarify complex tasks.

The first belief, “We can do more by memorizing less,” emphasizes the limitations of working memory. Instead of expecting employees to remember everything, you provide digital resources at your employees’ fingertips via a searchable knowledge base. This reduces the “cognitive weight” employees carry.

The second belief, “We can learn while we do,” challenges traditional training methods. Instead of shadowing or lecturing, the framework promotes learning through doing by being presented with scenarios and then being asked to find and follow the digital resources to respond. Employees learn faster when they encounter challenges, formulate questions, and discover answers independently.

The third belief, “We can clarify the complex,” acknowledges that while we can’t always simplify processes, we can clarify them. The framework aims to reduce errors, training time, and mental strain associated with complex procedures by providing clear, easy-to-follow instructions.


In order to do all of this, you must employ four systems:

  1. Prepare
  2. Train
  3. Empower
  4. Adapt

The Prepare System focuses on creating digital guides that employees can quickly find and follow. This is accomplished by getting everyone to align and define what employees in a specific role must do and how they need to do it. You then design digital guides that enable employees to do those things. Our criteria for the guides is that an employee who has the requisite background knowledge can type in some keywords into a search field, find the guide they need, and follow the guide successfully without needing to ask a supervisor for assistance or clarification. These could be checklists, decision trees, or articles.

The Train System moves away from long lectures and memorization and instead emphasizes mini-presentations and practice activities. In practice, employees are presented with short (15- to 30-minute) foundational courses that explain core concepts. Then they spend 80 to 90 percent of their training time engaging in real-world practice activities. Trainees use the digital guides to successfully complete these activities. The digital guides are the same ones the employees will use once they leave training, so very little memorization is required.

The Empower System encourages employees to rely on digital guides and invest in reusable knowledge. Instead of jumping in to answer questions or walk employees through complex procedures, supervisors invest in updating existing guides or creating new guides that are findable, followable, and scannable. Employees are held accountable for relying on the digital guides to perform their jobs.

Finally, the Adapt System helps organizations adjust to changes efficiently. When changes in policies, procedures, or tools pop up, supervisors and trainers upskill employees by updating the digital guides and doing minimal training. In most cases, no new training is required. Since employees are already relying on digital guides, those employees can instantly adapt to changes as the guides are updated.


The results of adopting the Find & Follow Framework and improving knowledge transfer are dramatic, both from behavioral and financial perspectives. Employees who were once stressed out and demoralized begin doing their job confidently and effortlessly. Customers who would once get the runaround because employees didn’t know what to do now get better service. And supervisors who were once burned out now can focus on doing the work they should be doing.

Find & Follow offers businesses a clear, repeatable recipe for breaking free from the constraints of tribal knowledge and ensuring that operational knowledge can be transferred quickly and effectively.

Greg DeVore
Greg DeVore helps organizations transfer knowledge to their employees faster. He started his training career 20 years ago in the film scoring industry teaching composers to use Apple’s Logic platform. That eventually led to opportunities to design medical device eLearning solutions for companies such as GE, Siemens, and Philips. DeVore is now the CEO of ScreenSteps and works with organizations large and small to revamp their training programs so they can onboard employees at least 50 percent faster. He has a degree in Composition and Film Scoring and can be contacted at: greg@screensteps.com.