Coaches Corner: Four Types of NeedsBy Jane Weddle
In their book "Performance Consulting--Moving Beyond Training", Robinson & Robinson state that there are four kinds of needs:
- Business Needs: The goals for a unit, department or organization. They can be a problem or an opportunity. Often quantifiable! What are the goals?
- Performance Needs: Describes people must do on the job in order for the business needs to be met. Answers the question: What must people do more, better or differently on the job if we are to reach our business needs?
- Training/Capability Needs: What people must learn if they are to perform successfully? Skills, knowledge, behaviors, and inherent abilities required for people to perform
Work Environment: Describes what system or process within the work environment of the performer that may need modified, improved or changed in order to meet performance needs?
Armed with that knowledge—you also need to know that business needs drive performance needs. Also, too many people just focus in on the “training needs” with out looking all four needs in unison. For example: “My people need training in problem solving!” They have identified a training need without looking at the other three.
Coaching Question: What are the impacts of that approach? A couple of thoughts: If you cannot identify a business need then maybe you shouldn’t be spending the dollars on the training. If you cannot identify performance needs then very little transfer back to the work environment will occur. All in all, a narrow focused view of needs can have huge impacts---now your turn—What are some others?
Coaching Challenge: Take an opportunity or problem in your organization and create 4 headings representing all four needs and below fill in the important information and see what you come up with as to next best steps. If you have caught your self saying “my people need training in_________”--then stop yourself and identify the other 3 needs!