In 2000 Lombardo, M.M, et al published “The Career Architect Development Planner”.

They started to look at people development and how this was best structured and delivered to people to help them learn and progress their careers. It was a seminal moment in that it shifted the emphasis from that of formal learning, done at a distance from the job to harnessing informal learning and emphasising the role of the manager as a learning enabler (Coach/Mentor).

This was also the catalyst for change in proactive L and D functions- often meaning reduced spend, less formal learning sponsored by the business and the promotion of more online learning resources.

Lombardo et al named their theory “The 70:20:10 Rule”.

They broke this down to propose an effective use of resources/time spent on learning and the methodology for delivering/realising the learning outcomes as follows:

10% Coursework and Formal Training

20% Coaching/Mentoring instigated by the Line Manager

70% Learning through experience/challenging assignments

This resulted in new concepts being introduced such as developing Line Manager Coaching Skills and Personal Development Planning. The message was all about giving learners flexibility to learn via a variety of mediums, a greater focus on learning on the job and empowering learners to search out new learning resources.

Nothing much has changed in this application over the past two decades except perhaps the increasing use of self-directed learning via online resources.

How should we be approaching this as we begin to emerge from lockdowns, furlough and the ravages of the pandemic?

How can we re-evaluate how we apply this model in trying to onboard new people, re-board existing staff from furlough and attract new Talent into our organisation?

Let’s take each element of the model in turn and apply it to learning in the Post-COVID Era.

Firstly, Coursework and Formal Training

Much of this has moved online over the past year or so. Whilst this has meant a boost to efficiency and certainly some people don’t miss the travel involved in attending learning, it has also meant that we have missed out on areas like collaboration, teamwork, innovation and socialisation.

Many of these areas are rooted in the need for us to connect as humans, in order to build Trust and therefore feel comfortable to suggest ideas, innovate and offer support and help to each other.

Think about on boarding people-how will this operate if you move to a full or part hybrid working model? Whilst it can be efficient to ensure they have the knowledge to carry out their role how can you enable them to feel they belong, are part of something and ultimately want to stay?

Many of our clients are working with this challenge and are setting up collaboration groups, converting offices to social hubs and assigning mentors/buddies to each new starter to help them feel part of the culture. To effectively onboard people and help them fully engage, online modules or zoom training is only part of the solution.

Secondly, the Manager as a Coach/Mentor

Anyone in a leadership or management role now will be experiencing a fundamental shift in the expectations of their followers. Work and Life have become increasingly intertwined- with people often expecting their leader to solve life problems or at the very least demonstrate compassion, empathy and understanding.

We predict this will be the biggest issue for leaders to deal with on a personal basis and then find a way to be more impactful for their teams as we navigate 2020 and beyond.

Giving people time, listening with empathy and then helping them find a way to navigate new challenges and opportunities through Coaching and Mentoring will be critical skills for leaders to adopt. For some leaders this will be challenging- having to have conversations using a range of softer skills- when perhaps they are more comfortable with feeling in control of situations, working with logic and being rational.

Finally – Learning through Experience/Challenging Assignments

This requires many of the skills mentioned above for leaders to develop. They also need to create a culture where learning, reflection and self-awareness are valued. To realise the learning from this time fully leaders need to create:

  1. Opportunities for individuals and teams to collaborate and reflect on learnings from day-to-day work.
  2. Opportunities for people to discover and deploy their Strengths as well as working on their potential performance blockers.
  3. The view that all work can be a learning environment not just about ticking boxes and task completion.

Fundamentally- our people have learnt a lot about themselves, their work and how to overcome challenges in the past year. How can we capture the learning from this, ensure we don’t slip backwards into old habits and really harness the joy of getting rid of processes and procedures that just don’t work anymore!

At Co-Creation we help Individuals, Teams and Organisations to:

  • Build Cultures that harness the Strengths of everyone to solve new problems with creativity, collaboration and an open mind to the value of learning-using our Strengthscope ™ Products
  • Consider their Mindset and how it is impacting their performance- using tools such as Engage ™ to develop Openness to Change, Confidence in their People and enabling them to perform at their best
  • Build leadership capability to navigate the Post COVID-Era- getting rid of old habits and creating new capability for The Leadership Revolution!

It’s time to re-think 70:20:10, equip your leaders to deliver on it and energise your workforce!

Are you seeking support with leading your teams through the post-COVID era? Call Co-Creation on +44 7876 024555 to speak with a member of our specialist team or email us for further guidance on how to manage change using a strengths-based approach on