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The other day Richard Jackson asked Patrick Graupp – “When should I introduce the resaons why?”   We thought it was worth sharing the exchange with all our readers.  This question comes up  frequently in JI train the trainer sessions . 

 Richard said: “In session 2 When I am breaking down the Fire Underwriters’ Knot, I have always used the full JIB sheet on the board. I have included Reasons for Key Points. I know we are cramped for time here but I’ve thought that the Reasons are important enough to fit them in. I have still been able to meet the time markers pretty well. If Participants ask me why the Reasons column is not included in the Participant Guide, I tell them that the focus at that point is to get the Important Steps and Key Points. The reasons are really identified in the questioning to determine the Key Points. In other words, when we do a good job on identifying the key points, the Reasons pretty much fall out on their own. The Reasons are very important, but the focus at this point in the training is on getting the Important Steps and Key Points.

 What do you think? Should I just use the Important Steps and Key Points as shown in the manual and guide?”

 Patrick replied: “What I tell trainers here, in Session Two, is that FIRST the trainees need to learn what Important Steps and Key Points are before we get them focusing on reasons for Key Points. The reasons are a subset of the Key Points so if I don’t know what a Key Point is to begin with of course I won’t understand the reasons. So first things first, one at a time.

Like you said, though, we do find the reasons for the Key Points when we confirm, in the breakdown routine we teach in Session Two, if something can be a Key Point by asking why we do it that way or what would happen if we didn’t. So we’re not ignoring the reasons or leaving them out. But I don’t like to point these out, or put them on the board, until later in the course in Sessions Four or Five when breaking down the demonstration jobs. Doing this in Session Two would be giving them ‘more information than they can handle at one time.’

As you point out, the reasons for Key Points is one of most powerful parts of JI. We make full use of them in order to motivate workers to follow standard procedures because they know why they have to do the job that way. People will not do something that has “no meaning” (That is, there is no reason for doing it). So teach this part well by making sure they first understand Key Points and how to find them.”

What do you think?  Like this post? Let us know below.  Join the conversation – leave a comment.


Comments on: "When to introduce the “Reasons Why”" (1)

  1. Richard; Pat and I discussed this as well, when I was going through my master trainer certification. The intent in leaving this information out, is to support the caution for step 2 (Instruct clearly, completely and patiently, but don’t give them more information than they can master at one time) As we worked through this, another option surfaced in the discussion. As patrick directed, one option is to roll this out later, to not cover too much too early. Another option that worked, was to incorporate the Reasons during the 3rd breakdown practice while doing the Clove Hitch Knot. We would cover the details when discussing the Summary of Job Breakdowns (section 11) when you address the concept of Important Steps adressing the question of (What) Key Points covering (How) and then add Reasons to adress the (Why) in the margin of the page. To do this I have them extend the Box to add Why’s.

    A couple of modifications need to be made to the script which include as follows:

    By remembering these 3 Things, you will be able to make clear the differences between important steps, key points, and reasons when making breakdowns.
    Secondly you will hve to add acouple of statements to the Bolded information on the bottom of the page:

    By having made a breakdown, you can make clear the importamtn steps, key points and reasons. Then in Step 2, you will be able to explain the important steps precisely, and in order, emphasizing each key point, while instructing. In step 3, which is the trial, breakdown will be useful for checking if learners understand the Important Steps, Key Points, and Reasons without missing anything.

    Incorporating these minor modifications, gives you the options to introduce earlier, especially if they bring up the question. “Why does the form incorporate Reasons, and we have not discussed it yet” If this comes up, this second approach gives another optional approach as to when to introduce the reasons column.

    Mike Braml

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