For me, the fact that the plan is the last stage of a five-step process is a bit of a revelation. We’re always told to start with a plan for everything: losing weight, hosting a major event, earning more money.
As trainers, we’re often challenged to create a storyboard for our eLearning projects, a design document for our instructor-led classes, an outline for an article. Even so, the planning stage is the least frequently used — the purview of the most disciplined designers, many plunge headlong into the project, working with their assessment data and depending upon the natural flow of the project itself to dictate the flow of the material. Planning is tedious, and we often rationalize it away by saying: we don’t know what to plan until we get into the material in the first place.
Guilty as charged.
Yet observe the process we reviewed over the past few weeks as we approached a Development Plan: We asked questions about the type of work we enjoyed, the type of work we enjoyed doing, how others viewed us, and our possibilities for the future. With those answers firmly in our head, we’re able to move forward with our development plan.