70:20:10 – a Formula for Learning Success

Posted in : Coaching in the Moment on 5 March 2019
Karl O'Connor
OCN Coaching Champions Ltd
Issues covered:

How can line managers ensure that their employees develop the necessary skills to succeed? Where does the learning take place: on the job, coaching or in the classroom?

These questions are being asked not just by line managers, learning and development departments but also by academics. Last year, two Irish Institute of Training & Development events focused on these questions with a panel of practitioners and Dr Paul Donovan of Maynooth University undertaking a closer examination of both public and private sector organisations’ learning model of 70:20:10. To learn more about when to train and when to coach, check out our January blog.

70:20:10 – a Formula for Learning Success

Academics dislike the 70:20:10 model but business leaders love it, according to findings from the studies and panel discussions!

So what exactly is this learning framework known as 70:20:10? It is your guide to how people learn on the job. According to the model, 70% of learning comes from on the job experiences, 20% from feedback, and 10% from courses and reading.  The research supporting this framework is based on successful managers’ feedback of where their best learning took place and is credited to Morgan McCall and others at the Centre for Creative Leadership for their work in the 1980s.  This model has enjoyed renewed interest since the recession of 2008 when training budgets were cut and managers had to find creative ways of training and coaching their employees. 

Case Study: Pernod Richard UK

Speaking at a recent forum on the model, former HR Director, Denis O’Flynn shared his story of the HR experience he brought to the role of CEO of Pernod Richard that helped him to deliver on the company vision to “shape the nation’s drinking experiences” with the implementation of a 1,000 day plan. The successful delivery of his plan was built on an unrelenting focus on people development, using the 70:20:10 framework.

Denis led a real transformation of an already successful business where he oversaw the doubling of profit, 95% engagement scores and a reduction of staff turnover from over 20% to under 7% over a three-year period! In addition, the company entered the Top 50 Great Places to Work in the UK for the first time.

These insights are relevant for the busy manager and help answer that thorny question of how people learn. Use the 70:20:10 learning model as your guideline to help ensure employee learning on the job is not haphazard but built on the concept of ‘perfect practice’, supported by manager coaching and training.

If you have any workplace problems you think might benefit from a coaching approach, contact Cariona and Karl on cariona@nearymarketing.com and karloconnor0@gmail.com.

In our next blog, we will explore when its best to train and when its best to coach.

Note: Karl O'Connor and Cariona Neary will be speaking at Legal Island's Education Law Update 2019 conference on 12th March.

This article is correct at 05/03/2019

The information in this article is provided as part of Legal-Island's Employment Law Hub. We regret we are not able to respond to requests for specific legal or HR queries and recommend that professional advice is obtained before relying on information supplied anywhere within this article.

Karl O'Connor
OCN Coaching Champions Ltd

The main content of this article was provided by Karl O'Connor. Email karloconnor0@gmail.com

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