The Starting Point – ANSI Z490.1
To understand why some training is successful some fail, it’s important to first read and understand ANSI Z490.1 Criteria for Accepted Practices in Safety, Health, and Environmental Training. This Standard provides clear steps for the creation, delivery, and assessment of safety training. I won’t cover all the detail now, but here’s a brief overview.
Z490.1 Provides a Formula for Success
The first step in ANSI Z490.1 is to conduct a needs assessment to make sure that training is the correct response to the business problem, or the hazard exposure presented. Training may not be the correct response, especially when process or design issues are present. If training is a correct response, the assessment should continue and define the audience to be trained, what trainees should know or be able to do after the training, the content to be included, training methods to be used, learning measurement, assessment of the training, and more. It is suggested that you first compare your training programs with the Z490.1 criteria. This will help you determine if the design of your training is correct and if it is on target for success.
Focus on Objectives and Understanding the Adult Learner
Next, if we assume that the design of the training follows the ANSI guidelines, success will most likely depend on how well you
- have identified clear, meaningful, observable learning objectives
- designed and delivered the training to meet the objectives
- considered the work environment where the training will be put into practice
- understand the needs of adults learners, and
- Incorporate techniques for engaging and involving the learners
Adults will pay attention to training that is accurate, current, and relevant. It also helps when the training is interesting, draws on each individual’s experience and that of the group, and actively involves or engages everyone. The purpose is to create a sense that the training information is aimed directly at the individual and their needs, and is meaningful to them today. In posts to come, I will provide greater detail on bringing your training to life.