🔓 How To Learn With The 70:20:10 model In a Nutshell

🔓 How To Learn With The 70:20:10 model In a Nutshell

🔓 How To Learn With The 70:20:10 model In a Nutshell

🔓 How To Learn With The 70:20:10 model In a Nutshell

🔓 How To Learn With The 70:20:10 model In a Nutshell

How To Learn With The 70:20:10 model In a Nutshell cover

How To Learn With The 70:20:10 Model In a Nutshell


How to learn with the 70:20:10 model? What is the 70:20:10 model, why are organizations adopting it and how can it help high-performance employees?

In recent years, the 70:20:10 model for learning and development has been adopted by organisations all over the world.

What started out as a simple concept has become a trend, with organizations recognizing that the traditional approach to structured learning and development no longer supports their strategic goals.

The 70:20:10 model is a Learning and Development theory that encapsulates all of the different ways that people learn.

ImportantLearning from experiences, interacting with others, or through training, are at the core of this approach.

Organizations use this model to shift their focus from training to performance so they can provide their workforce with a more holistic approach to learning.

Maximizing the impact of learning through experience, socialization, and formal training methods enables businesses to create and support high-performing workforces.

The 70:20:10 model has taken the business world by storm with 60% of American offices using this learning model in some form or another.

So what does the 70:20:10 model look like? Let’s take a look at how adopting the 70:20:10 model can benefit your organization.

What Is The 70:20:10 Model?

The 70:20:10 rule was created in the 80’s by 3 researchers from the Center for Creative Leadership, a nonprofit educational institution in Greensboro, N.C. The results of their research was the 70:20:10 rule.

The 70:20:10 rule breaks learning and development down into three sections.

  • About 70% of what we have learnt came from experience, reflection on that experience, experimentation, failure, adapting, success, reinforcing etc.
  • About 20% came from exposure to other people such as our boss, mentors, coaches, colleagues, family, friends, experts we might see on YouTube or read about in a book or article.
  • Only about 10% came from formal education such as training courses, e-learning modules or text books.

The 70:20:10 model is also known as performance-oriented learning that happens on the job.

While traditional models of learning through formal programs might be most-effective in cases of skills deficits, performance problems or retraining, 70:20:10 focuses on learning in the context of the workplace, to make good employees even better. 

The ratios are not set in stone. Rather, they act as a general guide for each type of learning, and these numbers can vary significantly from enterprise to enterprise.

The 70:20:10 model often forms the basis of organizational development programmes.

WarningIt goes against the typical ‘learning’ approach to development (i.e. the ’10’), which has fallen out of fashion in many employers during recent years.

Using this framework provides you with a holistic way to support all of the learning activities that happen within your organization.

This helps you to account for, and measure, the impact of each so you can ensure your business is on track to achieving its employee development goals.

Increases Engagement

Organizations that implement the 70:20:10 model have observed enhanced staff engagement. Staff are realizing development happens all the time, and this is driving higher engagement.

The 70:20:10 model provides a framework for a wider variety of development chances.

As it’s not down to just formal training, it allows managers and other employees to get involved. By doing this it increases the chances of them staying in the organization.

By highlighting new opportunities for learning within the workplace, leaders can encourage the continuous development of their team members.

ImportantIt is job-related experience that provides opportunities for individuals to make independent decisions, address regular challenges and themes, and work with natural mentors such as bosses and experienced colleagues.

The 70:20:10 model also has an impact beyond just some fancy best-practice learning. If done properly, the individual — and therefore the entire organization — can become far more agile and able to adapt, change and innovate.

By using the 70:20:10 model, organizations can increase supervisor and manager involvement in day-to-day employee training and development.

WarningSocial learning, which makes up 20% of the model, requires employees to learn from their peers or higher-ups. This means managers and co-workers are best placed transfer on-the-job knowledge by demonstrating tasks and facilitating questions.

This approach to learning creates an environment of mutual respect, understanding, collaboration, and team spirit.

If you have a good management team, they will want new people to succeed, so they will pass on anything to help them succeed.

Improves Productivity

dilbert comic strip productivity

Supporting employee development in all its forms enables your organization to nurture a high-performing workforce.

The 70:20:10 model is a catalyst for change, it takes learning and turns it into productivity.

WarningLearning doesn’t just happen when an employee is completing a course — they’re always learning. And as they’re continuously learning how to do their job better, they’re fully equipped to execute their role within your organization.

Problems in organizations are best solved with a 70:20:10 approach rather than traditional learning models.

This means with a 70:20:10 model, you can more effectively solve problems, whether it’s through communities, collaboration, sharing, increased access, and greater motivation.

The 70:20:10 model creates a High Performance Culture. It increases individual and team performance, employee engagement and builds a culture of continuous learning which all contributes to a high performance culture.

The longer you have to wait for formal training, the less likely you’re going to want to complete the work after.

ImportantBy incorporating more mentoring and coaching within the workplace, it is easier to get things done faster by having all the knowledge needed within the organization.

Charles Jennings has found that one of the advantages of the 70:20:10 model is timeliness.

Not only do workers find the learning they need when they need it, but resources can be prepared and deployed much more quickly than full-on learning events.

Offers Flexibility

The 70:20:10 model is more of a flexible guideline than a set formula so organizations can adopt it in a variety of ways.

The 70:20:10 model is identified as a more informal method of training, which nowadays is viewed as more efficient.

WarningHaving a flexible learning model is crucial to supporting the diverse learning needs of all of your employees, where a one size fits all model may hinder your workforce’s professional development.

By having a flexible learning model, you can be able to develop a personalized learning experience for your employees.

While most people utilize it to target a specific learning outcome, others use it for a different spectrum of learning. Also, some utilize it to provide self-paced training that suits an individual.

Some employees will be reluctant to become responsible for their own learning. Managers are instrumental in fostering an organizational culture valuing personal growth and development that will help employees understand and accept their role.

Using this model is a great way to support active learning.

ImportantThrough on-the-job experiences and guidance, employees are more likely to both acquire and retain the information they need in a timely manner, making it an efficient and effective way for them to learn.

The 70:20:10 model combines different learning methods into one model, allowing for a more blended learning experience.

This way, you’re ensuring your workforce is more likely to acquire and retain the information they need to become high performing employees than if they were learning through a single method.

Encourages Collaboration

dilbert comic strip collaboration

The social learning side of this model encourages employees to share their learning experiences with each other.

Learning with and through others, sometimes without being conscious of it, creates a collaborative working environment. 

Employees can exchange different ways of approaching a given task, enabling them to determine the best way to tackle it. 

Collaborating in this way also creates a strong culture of learning within your organization.

WarningManagers play a key role in experiential and social learning. They must recognize that developing their reports is an integral part of their role, not a new task being added to their responsibilities

The effectiveness of social learning heavily depends on the culture within your organization. It’s important to look at how you can support and facilitate social learning. Embracing it can lead to a stronger culture through building teams who are willing to support and learn from each other.

While each learning type in the 70:20:10 model occurs separately, they can support each other.

ImportantFor organizations looking for learning synergies, 70:20:10 can be particularly beneficial because the 20 informs the 70 while improving the 10. For example, you can use social learning to guide the design of effective informal (experiential) and formal training programs.

Collaborative learning is an essential tool that can help employees to overcome disruptions from new technologies.

You can identify in-house talents and enroll them. That’ll help to improve the way they provide solutions to subject matters. That’s because they can easily gain more knowledge from their tech-savvy peers.

Final Thoughts

If nothing else, 70:20:10 is an agent of change – helping strengthen cultural focus on high performance and continuous development and better positioning people to change behaviours to incorporate all the things that go with growth or development mindsets – constant enquiry, and acceptance of failure as part of the process on the road to success.Charles Jennings

The 70:20:10 model is a concept that’s gathering momentum. Your organization could be the next to apply its insights and principles.

The outcome could be a boost to your business’s overall training mindset, and an enhancement of staff awareness of informal learning.

ImportantSome organizations that use the 70:20:10 model have successfully embedded it in their performance evaluation models.

Implementing the 70:20:10 model demands transformation. 

WarningPersonnel throughout the organization must embrace responsibility for their own development and recognize the tremendous opportunities open to them.

Your organization should find ways of creating an enabling environment that can facilitate peer-to-peer interaction.

By successfully applying the 70:20:10 model, organizations can develop the high-performance employees that make them more competitive.

Think about how you’d apply it to your current learning strategy and identify if it will meet all of your workforce’s learning needs.

If your organization is in need of new training methods, the 70:20:10 model is definitely one you should consider! Share your thoughts in the comments section below!

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🔓 How To Learn With The 70:20:10 model In a Nutshell

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