3 Myths of Training Failure

Why do people fail to learn?

They go to training. They are shown all kinds of wonderful new behaviors and actions. Why don’t they display them back in the office?

This is the lament of training departments the world over. And it has led to three myths of why training fails.

  1. Resistance – The participants don’t really want to change.
  2. Environment – The culture and circumstances of the organization don’t support the new behaviors.
  3. Wiring – People are wired a certain way. You can’t change them.

While any of these issues may contribute, it is a myth to suggest people can’t rise above them.

Instead, think of people like rubber bands and training stretches the rubber band. Once the training disappears the rubber band snaps back to its old form, not because of lack of desire, but for comfort and habit.

To keep a rubber band stretched in a new shape or form, you have to provide constant stretching. A one time pluck won’t do. Training is a great initial stretch, but it is just that, an initial stretch. To make great changes, you have to keep on stretching long after the “training” is over.


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