Budget season, so how do you show impact?

I had a conversation with a colleague who’s in the midst of “defending” their L&D budget as they plan for the upcoming year and was asked about balanced benchmarking as a #ROI method. Good article (Evaluating ROI on Your Company’s Learning and Development Initiatives) that highlights method as a share, it does provide a relative measure of performance for teams or individuals and as a straight performance tool it’s good, yet I believe we need to view a broader impact to the business to show the Return on Learning, #ROL.

(Warning, I’m about to step up onto my small soapbox).

If you are in the place of having to “defend” then you’re spending too much time developing courses, delivering training, and building content. Not a criticism, I lived in that space for many years yet what I discovered is when I got into the operational space of the business and discovered what people performing in their roles were getting stuck on, when I measured impact by the values and metrics the business leaders used, and developed partnerships focused on improving performance I didn’t have to “defend” the work, the business was already explaining their need for me. Learning had become a strategic business tool that the business was measuring in different ways than what I was used to, but they had defined and calculated the impact.

How do you show impact, what tools and/or methods do you use, and how can we tell our story to those who still think we just teach classes to new hires?

1 Like