The Formal Learning Industries absolutely requires honesty, for Big Skills and technical ones.
- Honesty in the end-learner.
- Honesty in the subject matter expert.
- Honesty in the creation and delivery of Formal Learning material.
- Honesty in the conversation between program manager and sponsor.
- Stating something that one thinks and hopes to be true as definitely true.
- Not saying something that is highly relevant because the question wasn't asked the right way.
For getting the truth from a SME:
- Zooming in, getting more detail.
- Asking surprising or novel questions.
- Interviewing multiple people, and at multiple times.
- Building a model, like a simulation or even a time line.
- Doing anonymous interviews.
- We love a good story. But if a story sounds too good, too neat, to be true, it probably is.
For getting the truth from end-learners:
- Doing 360s and sharing results before a program.
- Interviewing customers and co-workers.
We are at a time when the truth seems to be constantly under attack, from spammers to advertisers to writers to leaders.
Lack of honesty hurts all industries, but it devastates ours.