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Why Training Needs Change. Carol J. Merry, Ph.D. Education and Information Division National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Overall Training Goals:. Impart information that is remembered Build skills- “self-efficacy”

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why training needs change
Why Training Needs Change

Carol J. Merry, Ph.D.

Education and Information Division

National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

overall training goals
Overall Training Goals:
  • Impart information that is remembered
  • Build skills-


  • Instill motivation for

“safe work practices”

in a nutshell training needs to evolve
In a Nutshell, Training Needs to Evolve...
  • Because of changes in your audience
  • Because of changes in your work environment
  • Because of changes in regulations or recommendations
  • Because your training evaluations indicate a need for change
  • Because you want to try new media, technology, approaches, etc...
respond to changes in your audience
Respond to Changes in Your Audience
  • A stable, homogeneous workforce will move through “Stages of Change” as you continue to interact with them over time.
  • A diverse &/or changing workforce challenges you to re-assess where they are each time you offer training!
stages of change
Stages of Change
  • Precontemplation- not on my radar screen!
  • Contemplation- considering change
  • Preparation- planning how to try changes in safe work behavior
  • Action- Actually making changes in behavior
  • Maintenance- continuing to use new safe work behaviors
  • Relapse- Struggling with “relapse” to unsafe behaviors
what are precontemplators like
What are precontemplators like?
  • Sometimes lack knowledge about issue
  • Have no interest in changing their behavior or beliefs
  • Have no intention of changing
  • even in a future time frame
how to move precontemplators to contemplation
How to move precontemplators to contemplation
  • Get their attention
  • Raise their consciousness
  • Create environments to help people do the right thing
what are contemplators like
What are Contemplators Like?
  • They know about and are aware of the problem, so more “facts” won’t make much difference
  • They are thinking about changing behavior
  • they are not sure how much the problem affects them personally or their significant others
  • there has been no actual movement to change
what moves contemplators to the preparation stage
What moves Contemplators to the Preparation stage?
  • Emotional arousal helps here too!
  • Direct Consequences for Self & others

1. Imagery- “imagine your life if…”

2. Consequences to family and friends

3. Thinking actively about solutions

4. Case studies & testimonials

what are preparers like
What are Preparers Like?
  • Increasing belief in “pro’s”
  • Decreasing concern about “con’s”
  • Start taking small steps toward new behavior (do a sound survey, read up on HPDs)
  • Increased confidence about making changes
  • Make a plan or “intend” to adopt new, safer behavior
what moves preparers to action
What moves Preparers to Action?
  • Setting reasonable goals
  • making specific plans to overcome specific barriers
  • making public pledges
  • continuing to believe there are more pro’s than con’s for the new behaviors
what are people in the action stage like
What Are People in the Action Stage Like?
  • Firmly believe benefits of new, safer behavior
  • Have a consistent plan for action and have been following it for several months
  • “Intend” to maintain the behavior
  • Recognize success of small steps
how do we encourage action
How Do We Encourage Action?
  • Environmental controls-reminders, cues
  • Respond to negative thoughts and actions as soon as they crop up
  • Model alternate behaviors when needed
  • Engage in a “contract” to maintain behavior
  • Provide extrinsic and intrinsic rewards
who are maintainers
Who are Maintainers?
  • Very strong champions of safe behaviors
  • publicly identify themselves as proponent of safe work behaviors
  • Support a meaningful reward system
  • know and use strategies for dealing with relapse in self and co-workers
  • long term change has occurred

(at least 6 months)

how do we help maintainers
How Do We Help Maintainers?
  • Continue environmental controls- cues
  • Continue modeling safe work behaviors
  • Continue countering negative thoughts & actions
  • Continue reinforcement systems that are meaningful
  • Develop a plan to deal with “relapses”
what about relapse
What About Relapse?
  • Usually happens when people are frustrated - failed attempts/barriers
  • people (supervisors!) may not realize that behavior change takes practice & patience
  • people are often not well prepared for complications or the strength of barriers

Don’t give up!

how to overcome relapses
How to Overcome Relapses:
  • Assure people that change takes practice
  • Encourage ongoing efforts at safe work behaviors
  • plan & communicate ways to handle stress
  • help others avoid negative coping strategies
  • help overcome people and things that undermine the desired behaviors
keep in mind
Keep in Mind…..
  • Work “culture” shapes behavior, values, & overall receptivity to your training

Are you in tune with your workplace’s culture?

  • Appreciating the diversity within a group is just as important as recognizing diversity between groups.
modify training to reflect changes on the job
Modify Training to Reflect Changes on the Job
  • Work changes- new equipment, new management goals, new processes, new responsibilities, etc.
changes in regulations technology or recommendations
Changes in Regulations, Technology, or Recommendations
  • De-rating of hearing protectors based on Subject Fit testing-ANSI
  • 3 dB vs. 5 dB exchange rate for TWA -new NIOSH criteria
  • Audiometric database analysis
  • 1 on 1 fit-testing
show and describe plug muff real vs lab fit testing of plugs overhead

Show and describe: plug & muff real vs. lab fit-testing of plugs overhead

Have some plug samples to discuss fit problems

your training program evaluation indicates changes are needed
Your Training Program Evaluation Indicates Changes Are Needed:
  • Do you have evidence that…
  • the audience is paying attention?
  • The audience can recall the important information?
  • The audience is responding appropriately with safe work behaviors?
  • You have addressed any barriers important to your audience?
changes can energize your training stamp out boredom
Changes Can Energize Your Training: Stamp Out Boredom!
  • Jazzy new videos?
  • Interactive, “real-life” problem solving/table top exercises
  • Using Employees to make “home grown” training materials
Tools of the trade: digital cameras, camcorders, use scenarios from plant history, case study re-enactments, etc...
just a few web resources
Just a Few Web Resources:
  • www.cdc.gov/niosh/noise.html
  • www.nih.gov/nidcd
  • www.osha.gov
  • www.aiha.org
  • www.caohc.org
  • www.lhh.org
  • www.hearingconservation.org
  • www.nsc.org