Some subject matter experts (SMEs) have little exposure to training jargon. They may not know what Bloom’s taxonomy is or how we may use it, but they know what knowledge and skills are needed to succeed.
In a similar way, we have found that many SMEs are not sure what to expect from a Lean-Agile approach either. It seems that in the domain of software engineering, many more people are comfortable with Lean-Agile terms and concepts. We have found that training people and SMEs that have already worked to support a software product project have often already been exposed to Agile or already know how to use Agile.
So during kickoff meetings, it can be helpful to SMEs to lay out what will happen in non-jargon terms. We prefer generic Lean-Agile terms like iteration to Scrum terms like sprint. We have found that Scrum jargon gets lost with audiences even more so than training jargon.
For SMEs who have supported training projects previously, they have often approached supporting Lean-Agile projects the same way they’ve done all the other training projects. We recommend briefly walking through the differences.
What does not change:
Unchanged is the need for SME inputs because they know the job-relevant details that successful performers need to feel more engaged in the courseware
What does change:
SME response times to instructional/LX designer queries need to be faster during the iterations to help the development team get the courseware done on time: hours not days.
Escalation paths and triggers need to be clearly laid out, so they know the consequences if they delay to the point where they risk an iteration.
You may not get to see the same content over and over because, ideally, after we’re done with the iteration or after the change requests from that iteration are fixed, we plan never to consider that chunk of courseware again.
Complex case studies or interactive activities that SMEs need to help develop should be treated as work items that will likely cross iterations by both the SME and the instructional/LX designer.