Maximize impact in the company by using behavioral impact teaching

If you ask me what I’m most proud of, I’ll tell you about the education I got when I was a child. At that time, I didn’t have much idea of the type of education I was getting or its quality, but over the years, I have become more aware of the importance of it.

I always have memories of when I was 8 or 9 years old. The economic situation in Uruguay was very bad. My parents worked long hours, and they could barely afford to buy my books or school supplies.
Of course we went to a public school, and for several years it was difficult to have new clothes or good quality stationary.
Despite the situation, education was always present during my childhood, and I am thankful that it helped me get good values in life.

You’ll agree with me if I tell you that what you learn during childhood shapes many of the behaviors you’ll have later in life. In fact, many of those basic values and habits you learned when you were a kid will continue throughout your whole life -and they will also become part of more complex comportments-.
As a result of this, many behaviors and ways of thinking will become connected to very intimate emotions. And this is something to keep in mind when you want to start changing the way people do things in your company.

I regularly talk to colleagues who mention that they find difficult to make changes in the organization, even if the alterations are small. Somehow, people seem not to understand why changing is important, and they offer a high resistance to change (often for no apparent reason).

As I mentioned earlier, a large part of these people’s behaviors are connected to emotions, sensations, or experiences that were learned during childhood. This makes it a challenge for any change professional to alter or even help individuals to start thinking in a different way when facing their day-to-day problems.

I am aware that many companies believe that -in order to change how people do things- it is necessary to start first by running workshops that explain why a new methodology or way of working is needed, or even trying to convince people by showing them the benefits of the new habits.
In my opinion, traditional ways of delivering workshops within companies are not always the fastest or most appropriate way to achieve a good impact in behaviors.

I imagine that you are curious about effective ways to alter conducts or mindsets that have been used for many years (having in mind that the behaviors are also connected to emotions or experiences learned during the first years of life).

In many other organizations I have visited, they believe that providing employees with more information will help them better do their job. This is true in many professions, such as if you are a doctor and you require to better diagnose your patients. However, if you need to radically alter behaviors, values or principles, this alternative may not be the most suitable.

That is why I wanted to explain what “Behavioral Impact Teaching” is and how it can help you alter or reinforce behaviors, values, or principles.

The idea behind what I call BIT is that -during your workshops- each activity or topic will broadly use the behaviors that you want people to incorporate.
For example, if you want individuals to learn to self-organize to solve their day-to-day problems, you should make sure that this behavior is used throughout the workshop.
It does not mean that you will have an activity to teach ways to self-organize (that might be a waste of time!), but that the behavior will be used during the whole course.

If, for example, you want people to get used to talking about their emotions in the workplace, the workshop must also include this component throughout the whole workshop.

Remember that the idea of Behavioral Impact Teaching is not that you apply it to a specific game or part of the course, but that the entire workshop will use the behavior.

This means that the new expected pattern should be included during all activities, the style of teaching you use, in the topics you choose, and even in the way you talk or move.

I’ve prepared a small framework that will guide you create workshops using this technique and that will help you maximize the impact on behaviours.

Before start teaching always ask… what is the behavior I wanted for them to achieve? Unless you target doctors, you know what to do…

I hope you find it useful, and write me if you have any questions.

Thanks for listening,
Erich.

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