Companies are spending increasing amounts on training and interventions designed to change the behaviors (soft skills, culture) of their employees. But historically it has been extremely difficult to measure both training need and effectiveness.
For decades the usual approach has been to sample employees before and after training based on (biased) self-assessment or (expensive and unscalable) expert observation. More recently, organizations have used engagement software - which primarily measures whether employees are happy with their company. None of the above work well in determining whether employee skills and behaviors are fit for purpose or are changing in the right direction.
In this case study, a large multi-national media company had tried everything to build the resilient, collaborative culture that it needed to support to its fast-based business. It also needed to better manage employee churn.
However, their impression (made in the absence of any consistent data) was that they were not making progress nor getting value for money for their large investment in culture and behavior development.
The media company is now using Indigometrics across a division of 12,000 employees to provide feedback and support, to assess training need, and to assess training effectiveness.
Given the company’s background, their internal L&D team has been able to create and test different training approaches – pivoting quickly based on effectiveness as measured by the platform:
- Broadcast - applied to an entire division
- Targeted - applied to individuals based on need
- Expert-led - traditional training led by an internal or external coach
- Social - short form content created by the employee’s leaders themselves
- Empathic - leadership content designed to build a sense of shared values and cohesion
- Technical - training focussed on building a particular skill
The company’s L&D team had two main objectives when developing their behavior change approach:
- (i) increase leaders’ and contributors’ engagement with the values and behaviors that the organization and individuals need to prosper, and
- (ii) increase the quality of workplace relevant behaviors as quantified by Indigometrics peer to peer data.
At approximately 12 months in the company continues to learn and improve the way that it manages behaviors. Results to date include:
Participation and engagement:
Prior to using Indigometrics, the company had commonly experienced ongoing participation of less than 10% in (non-mandatory) soft skills focussed training programs.
With Indigometrics, participation has stayed between 80-91% ongoing, primarily by engaging with business leaders and facilitating their creation of social learning content.
Social learning content and the use of behavior data in day-to-day decision making has proved a key driver for engagement.
Quantified Behavior Change:
The company has learned how to successfully blend broadcast and targeted training content to achieve widespread quantified behavior change.
Comparative behavior data for the period prior to Indigometrics’ introduction is not available.
After 6 months, 82% of employees measurably improved their target skills using the Indigometrics platform.
Broadcast vs Targeted Training:
The company observed that targeted training is most effective in delivering quantified behavior change. By focussing training and at those with a skill deficit in a particular action statement, the company can now deliver quantified behavior change in more than 50% of those targeted within 4 weeks.
However, the company also experienced reduced overall engagement from divisions where training was predominately targeted at individual need.
The approach is therefore now to blend broadcast training (for its cohesive qualities) with targeted training to achieve both high levels of ongoing engagement and also significant quantified behavior change.
The company employs a total of ~80,000 employees globally and is now using the knowledge that it has gained amongst the 12,000 strong “pilot” population to build its ability to manage behaviors and culture globally.
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