An Equipment Trainer Trains Better When on the Same Team

There’s a reason that football teams huddle before a play. Even though each team member has a different job generally and a different part to carry out for a specific play, all team members have read and can follow the rules of football are trained on team strategies and potential plays to be used In a similar way, there are many “players” that have a hand in affecting employee performance on a machine. Here are just a few: Course developer Course trainer Technical writer Training manager Customer service manager Field service engineer who trains Subject matter expert To the extent that any staff person has a connection to your training … Continue reading

Performance Based Training Applies to all Jobs

It's a snake! No, it's a brick wall! No it's a rope!

One of the reasons that Julian Serda created the Performance Based Equipment Training (PBET) Workshop back in 1993-1994 was to help eliminate the tendency of people to say, “It won’t work in our industry.” For that reason, in the Workshop, all the examples used to illustrate tasks, objectives, performance analysis, lesson plans, evaluation –all aspects of training — were specific to the semiconductor industry. He, along with others of the Technician Training Council knew that performance-based training generally, and Robert Mager’s writings specifically, apply to any industry, from insurance to diamond mining, and from military field tactics to semiconductor manufacturing. But to make the leap in application easier, the Workshop … Continue reading

Stop Blaming ADDIE


This post begins a series on certain views about training that get in the way of fast and efficient development and delivery of solutions for performer improvement. By “certain views” I mean: False assumptions about performance-based equipment training (PBET). Misunderstandings about performance-based equipment training (PBET). Deliberate mischaracterizations about performance-based training in general (usually to make it easier to sell one’s own opinion, new book, new workshop, moment in the sun). To keep it simple, I will be calling them “PBET Myths” even though any or all of the above can be at work. By performer I mean both… Customer (factory) technicians and engineers. Internal (supplier) technicians and engineers. So we start with … Continue reading

The Fog of Training

I was watching a movie based on Robert McNamara’s book, The Fog of War.  It reminded me of what I have sometimes said about training development. Catch my message in the video below.

Training Design Based on Urban Myths?

It seems that everyone in the 1400s believed the earth was flat.  That’s why Columbus had such a hard time raising money and sailors to attempt a circumnavigation of the globe. Was it religion, general ignorance of science, an inclination to follow the crowd? What was it then… and what is it now that makes urban myth so hard to squash? I continually get these recirculating emails that are completely untrue or, more dangerously half-true. I refer the senders to continuously.  “Please read the truth about this junk you want me to forward.” To demonstrate just how hard it is to shake a myth, it might surprise you to … Continue reading

More Objectives Can Make Life Easier

I’m talking about performance based equipment training objectives. I’ve actually written a ten page white paper on this. A lot of people find PBET objectives tedious, so the last thing they want to hear is any suggestion that they create even more objectives.  So why am I even writing about it? Because it can help solve a lot of learning sequencing problems.  For example- resolving discussions about “what is a guru?” deciding in what level a task belongs. accounting for variations of tasks that are customer-specific. differentiating aspects of one task that are for the service organization- not the customer. creating a CSE (customer service engineer) certification plan for which … Continue reading

Is the Recession Over for High Tech Equipment Suppliers?

I always thought that at some point the name of my blog would become a liability. An anachronism.  At some point the high tech equipment industry would recover to the point that it would no longer be trying to survive a recession, and my blog title would be… be obsolete! Yahoo! Is it Time to Take “Recession-Proof” Out of My Blog Title? In other words, is the recession over for American high tech companies? One American company has told me they are very, very busy. They have orders. Service engineers are busy with installations and training. There is hardly any time to get engineers up to speed on PBET. I … Continue reading

Real trainers don’t do Twitter

The training and learning Twitterverse is skewed toward social learning advocates. Those who believe in following human performance theory and process are generally missing. Continue reading

It was Carl Binder

Incredible!  Only one person commented for my contest, “Guess my favorite performance and training guru.” (Thanks Mike!) Well, Gloria Gery certainly contributed a lot to my thinking over the years, no question. But the third person on my list, after Bob Mager and Ruth Clark, was Carl Binder. Binder has written a number of articles on performance fluency. Another word might be automaticity. It’s the kind of performance where one acts without having to reflect. It’s the kind of performance involved speaking any language when we say that one speaks fluently.  Over the years, I am frequently asked about what differentiates the expected performance of a senior service engineer on a … Continue reading