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PUBLISHED: 1st March 2010
ISBN: 9780814414644
Using a courtroom trial as a metaphor, this book seeks to get to the truth about why training fails and puts the business partnership model to work for real. It teaches readers on both sides of the 'courtroom' how to stop viewing training as a cost center.
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PUBLISHED: 1st March 2010
ISBN: 9780814414644
Using a courtroom trial as a metaphor, this book seeks to get to the truth about why training fails and puts the business partnership model to work for real. It teaches readers on both sides of the 'courtroom' how to stop viewing training as a cost center.


Using a courtroom trial as a metaphor, this book seeks to get to the truth about why training fails and puts the business partnership model to work for real. It teaches readers on both sides of the 'courtroom' how to stop viewing training as a cost center.

Publisher Description

While upbeat lingo abounds about "complementing strategic objectives" and "driving productivity," the fact is that most training does not make a sig ni fi cant enough impact on business results, and when it does, training profes sion als fail to make a convincing case about the value added to the bottom line. The vaunted "busi ness partnership model" has yet to be realized-and in tough economic times, when the training budget is often the first to be cut, training is on trial for its very existence. Using a courtroom trial as a metaphor, Training on Trial seeks to get to the truth about why training fails and puts the business partnership model to work for real. Readers on both sides of the "courtroom" will learn how to stop viewing training as a cost center, and bridge the gulf between what learning functions deliver and what business units need to execute their strategies. A thought-provoking read for trainers and business unit leaders alike, Training on Trial provides a new application of the Kirkpatrick Four-'Level Evaluation Model and a multitude of tips and techniques that allow lessons learned to be put into action now.

Author Biography

Jim Kirkpatrick, PhD is a Senior Consultant for Kirkpatrick Partners.

Jim's major area of expertise is the Kirkpatrick Business Partnership Model.

Jim consults for Fortune 500 companies around the world including Harley-Davidson, Booz Allen Hamilton, L'Oreal, Clarian, Ingersoll Rand, Honda, the Royal Air Force and GE Healthcare.

Jim is a masterful facilitator and conducts workshops on the Kirkpatrick four Levels, business partnership and his newest topic, Training On Trial. He also delivers keynote presentations around the world.

Since 1995, Jim has developed and managed a career development center, worked on senior strategic planning teams, and consulted with organizations all across the world in topics of evaluation, team building, coaching, and leadership and conducted executive coaching.

Jim has co-written 3 books with his father, Don Kirkpatrick, the creator of the Kirkpatrick Four Levels.

For more information, please visit and

Wendy Kirkpatrick is the founder of Kirkpatrick Partners, a company dedicated to helping organizations become more effective through business partnership. She applies her skills as a certified instructional designer and expert presenter and facilitator to lead companies to measurable success.

Kirkpatrick Partners carries on and builds on the work of Don Kirkpatrick, the creator of the Kirkpatrick Four Levels. Don is actively involved in the company as the honorary chairman and is thrilled to have Jim and Wendy, his son and daughter-in-law, carry on his work.

Wendy's results orientation stems from her career beginnings in retailing; holding positions in merchandising, direct importing, and product development with Venture Stores and ShopKo Stores (regional retail companies). From there she held marketing positions with Springs Industries and Rubbermaid that utilized her ability to organize complex, multifaceted projects and yield rapid results. Most recently Wendy was a Training Manager for Hunter Douglas Window Fashions, managing the curriculum for 1500 sales and customer service representatives across North America.

Wendy and her husband, Jim, have written two books, which introduce the Kirkpatrick Business Partnership ModelSM and the Kirkpatrick Foundational Principles.

Wendy is a national and local American Society of Training and Development (ASTD) member. She is serving on the ASTD 2010 International Conference and Expo Program Advisory Committee. She is active in her local ASTD chapter, and volunteers on the Communications committee. Wendy is also a faculty member for the American Management Association (AMA). Wendy regularly speaks at events including the ASTD International Conference and Expo and the Training Magazine Learning Expo.

For more about Wendy, visit or

Table of Contents


Foreword by Donald L. Kirkpatrick, Ph.D..

Preface and Acknowledgments

1 The Case Against Us

2 Taking the Case

3 The Foundation of Our Defense

4 Step 1. Pledge to Work Together

5 Step 2. Address Important Jury

6 Step 3. Refine Expectations to Define Outcomes

7 Step 4. Target Critical Behaviors and Required


8 Step 5. Identify Necessities for Success

9 Step 6. Execute the Initiative

10 Step 7. ROE, or Return on Expectations

11 Examples from Our Stars

12 Call to Action



"If you are a training manager...if you pay for training or request training, you need to read this book... then strongly suggest your training manager read it, too." Quality Progress

Excerpt from Book

1 The Case Against Us ''''We are confronted with insurmountable opportunities.'''' --Pogo ON THE MORNING OF November 14, 2003, I was summoned to the office of the new CEO, RobertWarrington, of First Indiana Bank, where I was serving as the Director of Learning and Development. Since he took over earlier that year, Robert and I had had several informal conversations about training, the Indianapolis Colts, local restaurants, and world travels. Our interactions were cordial, friendly, and productive. My job had been an enjoyable and worldwide experience for eight years. I made sure I was all decked out that morning--even wore a suit and tie. I was not sure what was on Robert''s agenda, other than it was ''''training related.'''' I arrived at my office early enough to brush up on the latest initiatives my L&D team of six members was in the midst of, and I thought up a few new ones case Robert was interested in expanding our influence to the thousand or so bank employees. I rode the elevator up to the twenty-eighth floor, where I was summoned into Robert''s office right on time. As I walked through the door, something happened that had never occurred during my prior visits. I heard a ''''click'''' as the large wooden door shut behind me. I began to wonder what type of meeting this w s going to be, as I walked the twenty or so steps to Robert''s expansive, polished mahogany desk, where he sat with arather somber look on his face. My next thoughts came quickly, one on top of the other. ''''Uh, oh . . . something is wrong--trouble of some kind, just like being called to the principal''s office. He is going to give me bad news.'''' After exchanging some nervous pleasantries, he got right to ''''Jim, we have decided to make a change in the way we do training here. I have decided to eliminate the positions of the six trainers on your team. I want you to stay, however. I have confidence in you that you can carry on alone, and can utilize the fine business managers we have to pick up the slack.'''' In recent years, this scene has recurred many times for many eople. It takes di ferent forms, but the message is remarkably consistent: Executives have become wary of the value that training brings to the business in relation to the investment that is made. Research by several major training-related groups clearly shows that learning professionals and training departments that emphasize the training event as key to business results are particularly vulnerable to this type of action. I learned a valuable lesson that day back in 2003. My department had been on trial and we didn''t even know it! And worse, the verdict from the new CEO was, for the most part, ''''guilty.'''' I vowed back then to no longer count on good relationships between ''''us trainers'''' and our business partners--or the great programs we deliver. Instead, I concentrate now on understanding what our stakeholders--our key business partners--expect from us. I focus our training, reinforcement, and coaching efforts not only on creating strategic value but also on demonstrating that value. I also vowed to help as many people as possible to prepare for the time when they may find themselves on trial. In 1959, ASTD published Don Kirkpatrick''s articles on the four levels. In the first article, Kirkpatrick cited Daniel Goodacre''s work with BF Goodrich and quoted Goodacre: ''''Training directors might be well advised to take the initiative and evaluate their programs before the day of reckoning arrives.'''' Many still need to heed that warning from over 50 years ago. The tradition that training value comes mostly from design, development, and delivery (Levels 1 and 2; see Table F-1) is imbedded in the world''s learning culture. This book is designed to offer--nay, shout--yet another wake-up call: Learning professionals at all levels and in all types of organizations must extend their roles beyond tradition. To help you achieve this end, we''ve provided a model and the specific steps that will help you become a genuine strategic business partner. Additionally, we''ve scattered many ''''business partnership tips'''' throughout the book, and these are applicable to professionals in any situation. Fore example, here''s the first such tip. Business Partnership Tip: Take an honest and objective look at your job, role, and function as if you were a practicing attorney. What evidence can you provide to demonstrate your value to the bottom line of the business in relation to your efforts?

Product Details

Wendy Kayser Kirkpatrick, James D. Kirkpatrick
How Workplace Learning Must Reinvent Itself to Remain Relevant
Country of Publication
United States
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