Talking TAP

The TAP Qualified Professional Newsletter

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June 10th 2009 Volume 2, Number 4

In This Issue

Monthly Features

Contact us

Dates for your diary

Every year The Training Foundation takes part in a wide range of Learning and Development related events. TAP Qualified Professional LinkedIn members will receive advance notice and special registration privileges. Jot these dates in your diary! 

WORLD OF LEARNING 2009: NEC, Birmingham 30 September & 1 October 2009, World of Learning 2009:

Welcome from Claire Brookes

Claire Brooks
Hello and  welcome to the June 2009 issue of Talking TAP.  In this issue we are celebrating the success of our delegates who have  recently gained a TAP Diploma with us in our new Celebrate TAP Diploma Success area.  Our TAP Qualified Professional of the Month  is Fred Webb, here you can read  her journey through the courses that make up the TAP Diploma and see how it has benefitted her. 

June’s TAP Partner of the month is The National Leadership and Innovation Agency for Healthcare (NLIAH).  You can read how TAP has helped the NLIAH team to support NHS Wales with a focus on ever better quality and safety of patient care.

We also have an exciting article from Clive Shepherd where he shares his views on Impromptu m-learning.

The TAP Qualification of the month is our Trainer to L&D Consultant– take a look at this article if your looking to expand your skill set to a more consultative approach.  Oh and don’t forget  if you wish to take advantage of the  20% discount off this course its only valid until the end of June so please feel free to contact me on

Thanks and I hope that you enjoy this issue.


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TAP Qualification of the Month, From Trainer to L&D Consultant

Increasing numbers of experienced Learning & Development Specialists now play the role of L&D Consultants. 

They are managing a network of relationships with internal client groups. This involves dealing with incoming requests for training programmes, working in a consultative capacity with senior stakeholders to clarify business needs and confirming the nature of any associated training requirements.

The key objective of this challenging role is to agree best-practice interventions that employ the optimum blend of resources and that meet the needs of the business in a cost-effective manner.

However the skills and knowledge required to provide effective L&D consultancy do not necessarily come naturally to trainers - This 2 day workshop gives trainers the robust consultative methodology required to deal with challenging and assertive management stakeholders who can themselves be under intense operational pressure.

This month we are offering a 20% discount on the  Trainer to L&D Consultant workshop.

See what past delegates say about this 2 day workshop:

Extremely beneficial - I would recommend it, and feel a lot has been achieved in a short period of time. I now feel energised and encouraged to approach my work in a more consultative manner. Thank you.

Esther Inglis
CPP Group Plc

Excellent. Yet another excellent course from The Training Foundation. I would highly recommend this course. Many thanks.

Richard Pearce
Telford & Wrekin PCT

Incredibly useful. I feel that I have been given and shown how to use a box of essential tools.

Sandra Thompson
BAE Systems

To learn more about moving from a training role to that of an L&D Consultant, please click here

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TAP Partner of the Month, NLIAH

The National Leadership and Innovation Agency for Healthcare (NLIAH) was set up in 2005 as a strategic resource to support NHS Wales deliver its exciting and ambitious agenda. In its short history NLIAH has already gained national and international recognition for the quality of its work.

NLIAH has specialist knowledge, skills and experience in leadership and orgainsation development, service improvement, workforce development, governance in health and partnership working. The NLIAH team supports NHS Wales in building self improving organisations with a focus on ever better quality and safety of patient care.

To maintain credibility, teams within NLIAH need to be confident and competent to design, develop and deliver to a consistently high standard. Offered by the Training Foundation, the TAP Certificate in Training Delivery Skills learning methodology, provides the infrastructure through which individuals can develop programmes regardless of subject matter, allowing their skills to be utilised across NLIAH directorates:

The leadership climate in public services is changing with an increasing emphasis on emotionally intelligent leadership underpinned by effective skills and competence. The NLIAH Care to Lead development framework has been designed to ensure that NHS leaders thrive in this changing world to ensure delivery of fast, safe and effective  healthcare services for Wales.

The imaginative Modernisation Assessment process focuses on the extent to which Welsh health communities are taking forward the service improvement agenda, with process and cultural change running in parallel. Service Improvement operates within two domains; formal programmes to up skill individuals and teams in the use of service improvement tools and techniques, and bespoke tailored support to help project implementation and modernisation, resulting in improved quality of patient care/
experience and well being for the citizens of Wales.

The NLIAH Workforce Development team has a crucial role to play in supporting NHS Wales to reshape, develop, educate and train the healthcare workforce. NLIAH also leads on the introduction of a new integrated workforce planning system, to support the delivery of a sustainable workforce for the future.

Improving public services in Wales is founded on the premise of individuals and organizations working together to deliver better services locally to citizens. The Partnership Development team supports the NHS to develop its skills and capacity to work in a collaborative environment enabling staff and organisations to realise this ambition. 

Paul Schanzer, Senior Development Lead states that “In a constantly changing NHS Wales environment, NLIAH needs to provide opportunities for staff to develop the necessary skills, knowledge and behaviours to support the service through times of change and reconfiguration”. TAP plays an important role in the fulfilment of this ethos. As NLIAH continues to grow its own practitioners across its directorate teams, TAP offers the springboard to develop new talent with a consistent approach to the development of skills, confidence and an ability to engage effectively with the service.

Paul Cottingham, Service Improvement Manager added, “In an ever changing environment where the ‘one size fits all’ approach is not an option, and given the range and diversity of both the service and its workforce, TAP offers a highly regarded, consistent standard of training design, delivery and facilitation. It enables the delivery of world class service improvement methodologies such as ‘Lean Thinking’ and ‘Six Sigma’, to a diverse workforce, underpinning NLIAH’s role in supporting NHS Wales to deliver world class healthcare for the people of Wales”.

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Article of the Month: Impromptu m-learning, by Clive Shepherd

Mobile Device
This week I was lucky enough to present at the World Summit on the Information Society, hosted by the ITU, a UN agency, in Geneva. At the very last minute I was drafted into a panel discussion on 'ICT applications for a better life,' with a focus on the impact of mobile devices on many aspects of our lives, including learning. All very good, but I didn't know I'd have to make a short presentation on the subject. I don't consider myself an expert on m-learning, but I managed to improvise a few words. Here's roughly was I said:

Up until now, m-learning hasn't really happened. I wrote an article on the subject called M is for Maybe back in 2003 and this has proved to be a realistic perspective. There may be 4 billion mobile devices out there, with more than 60% of these in developing countries, but simple voice communication devices, supplemented by SMS messaging and operating at 2G bandwidth, never looked like making a major impact on learning (although their impact in other fields has been enormous). But technology has moved on apace, as it has a habit of doing, and it's now fair to say that the outlook for m-learning is much more promising. Smart phones are, of course, small computers and, in many cases, they can take advantage of broadband connection using 3G networks. This doesn't mean they take over the role of desktop and laptop computers; after all, you might watch a video on a mobile device, but you wouldn't edit it that way; similarly, you might view a budget forecast on a smart phone, but you'd use your PC to create the budget. Some activities require large screens and substantial processing power; learning (unless of course you're engaging in a 3D sim) is, by and large, not one of those.

So, given the increasing proliferation of high-power smart phones and mobile broadband, what's to stop the advance of m-learning? Partly, it's the determination by learning and development professionals to stick to the traditional delivery of highly-structured, formal learning in substantial quantities. It has taken 20 years to convince l&d pros that formal learning can be delivered successfully online rather than always f2f; there's another major cultural change required if they are to adopt a less formal approach to the use of online media, which is where mobile devices are likely to excel. Few users are going to use a mobile device to work on a lengthy, formal self-study course; but they are likely to use it view videos or slide shows, listen to podcasts, read very short articles, contribute to collaborative learning activities, ask and respond to questions, and generally to engage with their network. This is where e-learning is going, full stop. Mobile devices impose few limitations on this approach, so perhaps m-learning's time has come.

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TAP Qualified Professional of the Month, Fred Webb

Fred Webb
When Fred Webb was awarded her TAP (Trainer Assessment Programme) Diploma
from The Training Foundation, she ran around the room cheering “Yeah, I’ve done it!”
And she had good reason to feel proud of herself.  Not only had she achieved it within five months of attending her first TAP course, she also earned an extremely high pass mark (93%) and her report is used as a best practice benchmark for others who aspire to a TAP Diploma.  “Apart from my GCSEs, this is the first big qualification I’ve done beyond school and as someone who has a tendency to start things and then not finish them, this was a massive achievement for me,” she says.

Fred is an Implementation Manager within Information Systems at the Land Registry. She is charged with designing and rolling out training on the organisation’s software systems, which are currently being updated and upgraded with a lot of associated training required. 

Fred describes herself as the type of person who likes to help others bring out the best in themselves. At school she had toyed with the idea of becoming a teacher and while she never went down that particular career path, she did eventually find her niche in professions not too far removed from teaching, as a trainer by career and counsellor in her personal life.  “I’ve always enjoyed training – that feel good factor of making a difference to someone’s life in a small or big way – but I fell into it really,” she explains.

She and her colleagues had all received some in-house training instruction training, but it was very much of the ‘old school’ show, tell, do presentation approach, with minimal interaction.  Faced with a heavy schedule of training thousands of staff on new systems, the time had come to equip the trainers with a recognized training qualification.

“The Training Foundation came top of the searches, we read a lot of case studies and were convinced that the TAP approach was what we were looking for,” says Fred.
She was the last of the team to do the TAP Training Delivery Skills course and when her time came in March 2008, her expectations were sky high.  “Everyone had absolutely  raved about the course: it had been ‘bigged up’ beyond belief, so it really had a lot to live up to,” she says.

Fortunately she was not disappointed, hailing it as the best training course she has ever attended. “Within five minutes I was completely hooked,” she says. “I’d never experienced anything like it before. The idea that you ask your delegates what they think they need to do, rather than telling them what to do was a complete revelation
as a learning technique. It was all so hands on, energising and great to be learning about these techniques alongside trainers from all sorts of other organisations.”

As she journeyed through the course, she found herself wishing that she had done it a year previously, when she had helped to roll out a huge systems training programme to 400 staff over a six week period. The feedback suggested that the learning experience had not been entirely satisfactory. 

The difference that the TAP approach could have made to that experience became all too clear when she had the opportunity to apply her new training delivery skills to another major programme roll-out after completing her course.  “It was very technical and I needed specialist support, but this time I felt so much more in control. I had more conviction and confidence, the structure was better and I used the feedback
from the first course to make adjustments to subsequent courses. From then on the feedback just got better and better and that was a brilliant feeling.”

Spurred by her experience of the Training Delivery Skills course, Fred undertook the TAP Facilitation Skills course in April and once again was bowled over by the impact.
“This was definitely my favourite course,” she says. “Discovering that everyone has different learning styles and how to cater for all of them so that each participant gets what they need out of the learning experience was another epiphany.  This has been as useful in my personal life as my job.”

Catering for different learning styles within one training group poses structural challenges and this is where the TAP Training Design and Development
course comes into its own.  “This was the ‘science’ bit – the underpinning
theory that ensures your investment in training really delivers results. For me, it was the toughest course of the three, but not only did it make so much sense, it also made me realise that we were getting involved in the training requirements decision making process at far too late a stage.”

With confidence boosted, Fred now doesn’t think twice about phoning a project manager
up early in the development and implementation process to determine training requirements, discuss costs and suggest training options.  “I’ve become a lot more professional and convincing in my approach and the project managers really value my advice. It’s so good to know what I’m doing and be recognised for it.”

Fred stresses that the role played by The Training Foundation trainers cannot be overstated.  “I couldn’t fault them. They were literally always ‘on tap’, happy to answer all our questions, gave as much time as we needed – even until 7 or 8 at night. You just don’t get that on external courses. I was completely in awe of them.”

With three TAP qualifications under her belt, Fred’s sights were now firmly set on the Diploma in Learning and Development - and clinching it as quickly as possible.
“I was completely smitten and didn’t want to lose the momentum, so from mid-May to July I completed three lengthy reports on implementing training using the TAP  methodology, from Training Needs Analysis to the Post Implementation

The thrill of being awarded her Diploma with such high marks was intensified when Fred’s report so impressed The Training Foundation that it is now used as a model report to inspire other Diploma applicants. And there is the added bonus that everything she’s learned through TAP is equally valuable to her external counselling
work.  “I wouldn’t have a moment’s hesitation in recommending TAP to anyone,” enthuses Fred. “As well as transforming the way I tackle my current job I have great hopes that it will help with my career aspirations. For someone who is driven by
the desire to make a difference to people’s lives, TAP has certainly made a difference to mine.” 

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Celebrate TAP Diploma Success - This Month's TAP Diploma Graduates

Welcome to the new section of  Talking TAP – here we  want to celebrate the success of our delegates who have worked really hard to gain a TAP Diploma with us.  The new graduates for this month are:

Nicole Crawley
Atkins Global 
Bev Thompson

Steve Haycroft
Northants Police

Congratulations on all of your hard work on both the classroom elements, and the work based project – I’m sure that you will find the skills gained invaluable. 

If you have gained your TAP Diploma we want to help you to celebrate your success even further.  We would love you to join us at an award ceremony here in Coventry along with other invited members of the TAP community.  

There will be two speakers, and a buffet lunch, along with the chance to meet your fellow Learning & Development professionals from a wide range of industries. In addition, Training Foundation directors and trainers will be attending, so the day will be a fantastic opportunity for you to establish or re-establish contacts.

The event is planned for Wednesday 22nd July here at Technology House in Coventry.  If you would be interested in attending this event please let me know on

Also don’t forget that if you have enrolled on the TAP Diploma and need any help with your work based project please feel free to contact Sharon Litterick (our diploma tutor) on she will be more than happy to help you out.


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