Richard Sites | vice president – training & marketing | @rhillsites
Happy New Year! Welcome to the time of year where you are either starting your New Year resolutions, procrastinating starting your resolutions, or exclaiming your dislike for the nonsense which is making New Year’s resolutions. I’ll let you decide to which group you belong.
During the holiday season it’s almost impossible not to reflect back on the past year and consider what you might have done differently. No matter how hard I try to avoid it, there’s always that moment on December 30th or 31st where it hits me. “Man, I really wished I would have done more or tried harder!” There’s just something about turning the page on the calendar which makes that moment seem necessary and unavoidable. But it’s too late to change what has happened. We can only hope and plan to do better.
But if we are honest with ourselves, doesn’t it always seem like the same resolutions (or at least similar ones) come around every year? Lose weight, save money, workout more…blah, blah, blah.
A simple web search will find plenty of reasons why we fail at our resolutions. The top reasons are:
- We go big – making goals that are never attainable.
- We expect magic to occur – setting timelines which are not realistic.
- We have too many resolutions – choosing everything we can think of to change.
- We don’t change our environment – the temptations which hinder our goals are still present.
On nearly every occasion I give a talk or teach a workshop about SAM, I am told about the challenges, limitations, and failures of trying to implement SAM. This is almost immediately followed with a question of “How can I make a Savvy Start happen?” or “Why didn’t this go any faster than our current process?” or “When should I present the Design Proof?” My responses are rarely about the process or components of SAM, but rather about the same things which make our resolutions fail.
Any attempt to change a process which is currently in use in an organization takes more than just having a new process to start. It takes planning, setting expectations, focusing on small successes and integrating into the organization.
From my experience, people are often more excited about using SAM to produce engaging and performance changing learning experiences than they are at ensuring the successful implementation of a new process. Now this is not a bad thing at all! Exuberance, energy, and excitement go a long way towards making any endeavor a success. But just as with New Year’s resolutions, it takes a lot more to achieve the goal.
So here is my list of 2015 SAM Resolutions to help you make this year and your instructional design projects a success! (Do these one at a time, in any order. Don’t try to do them all at once!)