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.”
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