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Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Willing is not enough; we must do. – Goethe

We’ve all heard of the 70:20:10 method – the theory goes that 70% of learning happens through hands-on experience, 20% through interactions with others, and 10% through formal study.

Seems logical, but how can we apply it in practice? Our OPEN Programme for graduates provides a helpful case study in how the 70/20/10 rule can be applied to create effective, engaging and sustainable graduate development; so how do we do it?

70% experience

Our programme is focused above all on experiential learning:

– The programme is structured around 3 residential, experiential modules where delegates challenge themselves in an environment completely outside their workplace. They then take this experience back to the workplace in between modules to apply what they have learnt.

– Due to the open nature of the programme, our delegates collaborate and network with graduates from a huge range of other businesses, allowing them to learn from each other’s experiences and share their own.

– The most significant on-the-job aspect of our approach is the fact that the graduates feed all of their learning back into the business by way of stretch assignments and business challenge projects, allowing them to gain valuable workplace experience and learn from it as they go through the programme. This means that the graduates solve real business challenges as part of their learning experience.

20% interactions with others

– The programme includes constant, dedicated support from Discovery experts, including support visits, coaching and mentoring throughout the 18-month course and beyond.

– We also work with line managers to ensure delegates are applying their experience within the business.

– Working with other delegates also allows the graduates to develop professional networks that will help and influence them throughout their careers.

10% formal study

– Our course offers an integrated Level 3 Institute of Learning and Management qualification, providing a theoretical grounding for delegates’ development, and offering them a tangible achievement they can be proud of at the end of the programme.

But does it work?

The course is flexible and appeals to all learning styles, giving it an extremely high success rate – 85% of delegates in the last 3 years rated their experience as good or excellent. Furthermore, 74% of all delegates who have completed the programme since it was launched in 2009 are still with the same company that put them through the course, showing that it significantly increases retention. After all, CEB research indicates that on average only 25% of graduates stay in their first company for more than a year.

Do you have any examples of the 70:20:10 method in action? We’d love to hear them!

Written by Florence Sturt-Hammond