Learning Needs Dialogue

Published: 28th June, 2021

Be a part of our conversation where Learning Lead Bev Holden shares a recent experience using BIG PICTURE® to discover the learning need rather than guessing or attempting to impose learning on an audience. Following on from our last Learning session around curiosity this is about discovery (of Learning Needs Analysis).

If you’re wanting to activate colleagues before content is designed or shared you’ll avoids danger of infantilising colleagues by inviting them to think about needs as equals, pinpoints what learning would make the biggest difference thereby informing the People Development team about where to spend their budget most effectively.

What I’ve learned from Bev is the way to create time to think, being curious in the way we encourage colleagues to join the dots and because of that we are truly providing the space for organisations to have the conversations to turn Challenges into Opportunities’

Mart @YourBigPic

In this session Bev shared a story from her client work over the last two or three months as an example of how BIG PICTURE® worked for her and, as a 10 year Practitioner, surprised her that could be noteworthy to your work. This is about creating an environment in which for people to think for themselves. As a prop Bev refers to the Digital template but equally this could have been a physical and/or digital delivery. The client intially thought they wanted sales training for help cross-sell across different products and services from different departments. As such this was an initial ‘ask’ around developing stronger client relationships. Read on below to find our how the conversation developed.

The ‘webinar’ word doesn’t really describe what it is we do with our time in sessions. We love a conversation where everyone has the chance to contribute.

Participants are provided with the means to make connections thus drawing attention to the conversation that is going on around.

It’s how we roll!


We’d love you to take the time to watch the highlights and either way here are our brief notes about what you can take away from Bev’s experience:

1. It’s not about BIG PICTURE® it’s about creating an environment for people to think for themselves. This is a combination of the tool, the scene setting and the points listed below;

2. Sometimes the starting point isn’t what is required. In this case “Sales Training” and strengthening client  relationships to help people feel more confident about cross-selling and having difficult conversations. By huddling around it was apparent there were strengths all across the organisation and so sharing a view of the client experience and how that can be improved. This is about getting the team on the same page;

3. The key to the success are ‘Artful Questions‘ that are shared in advance as well as ‘rules of engagement’ in the way people will relate to each other. This is a key reminder it’s a participative conversation rather than a training event;

4. By focusing on ‘How you excel?‘ creates a positivity around the developing client experience. What would your ‘Artful Questions’ be and can we help you form them?

5. Rather than job titles ask that colleagues place themselves ‘where you add most value in the organisation?’. This is a great levelller and insight into how your team really works! It’s something each and every individual has a view on and works as a great conversation warm-up. This is using the BIG PICTURE® Board to enable participants to place themselves where they see themselves. As Jon added often a specialist role title provides colleagues the chance to rule themselves out of incredibly valuable activities. Let’s help change this!

6. By pairing colleagues from different pockets and seniority across the encourages diversity of thinking often lacking with a hierachy. Using breakouts for this ensures that everyone has a voice;

7. The ‘Wisdom in the Room‘ is not always where you think it might be! By providing a level playing field with different points of perspective is a great way to harvest this wisdom and so it becomes an asset. In this case it’s a point of perspective on the client experience. Every perspective is unique and we want to learn from it- we hope you do too!

8. A further technique here is ‘Taking Turns‘ rather than the more frequent top-down approach. If people know they have a protected time frame then they feel more comfortable using it as they wish. They have their chance to share what could be the most powerful idea of the day?

9. Described by Bev as a ‘thoughtfully energetic environment‘ when was the last time this was created in your organisation?

10. From the platform of honesty established a walkthrough of the client experience, using the BIG PICTURE® yellow Customer Journey, identifying Challenges and Opportunities is a way to focus down on the explicit purpose of the session. Go here and first and it’s likely to mask the ground truth in the group;

11. On seeing and the hearing the quality of the outputs of the conversation there will be a demand to capture the outputs in a way that can be harvested into related work that is going on in the teams at all levels. Whether this be a strategy, activity plan or core values and principles. Ask us how we can help you do this!

12. Asking ‘What is more TRUE (than what we have on the Board)?‘ is a great way to up the ante and optimise the outputs based on the level playing field you have created.

A whole host of take-aways there to create an environment in which people think for themselves. With it comes a sense of enjoyment to spend time thinking together and hearing different perspectives. And remember what we do is a product of the quality of the thinking that is done in advance. So let’s help people feel less guilty about taking time to think for ourselves and with colleagues.

* 103 Opportunities were created by participants as a result of Bev brilliantly facilitating all of the above!

Time to tell your own story – let’s go ..


Please do ask us to help you achieve this same impact in your organisation. We can deliver this activity for you and at the same time upskill your team to take over the delivery. You can weave this into your ongoing activities which means you’re paying once for resources and deploying them many times across your organisation.

Find out more about our approach for Engaging Learning led by Bev Holden. You can have a go yourself by printing and writing on the resource within the brochure you can download. The stuff we care about is all over our YouTube channel @YourBigPic. I would love to take you through a taster of BIG PICTURE® in a Webinar you can sign-up for here. Thanks for reading!