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The Behavior Catalog

Where does learning begin?

What is a behavior catalog?

The Behavior Catalog is a tool for creating a detailed collection of behavior targets. Identified behaviors are organized into chapters of essential business outcomes (positive, negative, strategic). By recording behaviors in this way, it is possible to identify opportunities for training. 

A sampling of questions answered when creating the Catalog:

  • What are the critical behaviors of a process/procedure?
  • Who (“actor”) performs the behavior?
  • Is the actor limited to following directions? Do they need to do more?
  • Are the behaviors measured? Can they be measured or tied to current KPIs?
  • Is there risk to the business and/or actor or others if there is non or sub performance? If yes, what are the potential consequences?
  • Can talent be hired or must the behavior be trained?
  • Does compensation or management drive performance?
  • What is the frequency the behavior is performed?
  • How many roles and individuals perform the behavior?

Integral to the creation of the Behavior Catalog is formulating the right prescription for skills development and behavior support. The treatment map introduced in Michael Allen’s Guide to e-Learning (second edition), provides a simple, generalized decision framework for choosing the most efficient instructional approach. The recommended treatments can be used for any learning modality, not just eLearning.

Reading the Map

The Desired Outcomes column heading refers to the level of performance required for success on the job. An example of “follow instructions” performance is completing tasks using a checklist that provides detailed information about each step to be taken every time the tasks are performed. At the other end of the scale, an example of a “expert performance” is generating and completing a new set of tasks to achieve a desired result in a situation that had not been encountered before. The Task Complexity and Risk Scale charts the difficulty of the task and the level risk is involved for the actors, business and assets. As these rise, greater performance proficiency is essential.


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