Behaviour Change - [website] Email Print
Published: 8th of Jul 2021 by: Debbie Engelbrecht

Why is behaviour change so difficult and why specifically is it so necessary?

One of the biggest challenges in any learning environment is to ensure that the new skills learnt are indeed implemented and used practically. For this reason, it is so encouraging for the team at Staff Training to receive feedback as follows:

"Hello Debbie, I don't know that you will remember me but I attended one of your courses in 2008, I saw one of your adverts today and was pleased to see you have weathered the Covid storm! I just thought to reach out and encourage you to please continue doing what you do. To this day I still use the principles and guidelines you taught me and I cannot thank you enough for the change that has made to the way I view my career and professionalism. I have been promoted quite a few times in the last few years and I now run a team of 18 in the workplace. I have come a long way from the rookie you met in 2008"

Well apart from the fact that we started talking about behaviour change and that I do indeed remember this particular delegate, what is more important is that this delegate attended quite a junior workshop at the time. But the principles have and will never change. If we want change, it needs to start with us, it needs to be practiced and embedded to become new habit and that is when behaviour change becomes difficult...

Ultimately not because we don't see the merit in the message, most people do, but practice takes time, focus and prioritization and without these, it is unlikely that we will sustain sufficiently for the new skill to become the new habit and eventually to be so ingrained and internalized that we forget we know it.

For this reason Staff Training developed the Skills Check option on our workshops. It is a tool that follows up with our delegates to remind them the headlines of what they have learned. Then to question them regarding how they have implemented. This takes place over a few weeks and what it does is to help entrench the new skills application.

It is simply an additional advantage that there are then reports that can be emailed to line and HR managers to be used as part of the performance check system in your company, facilitating the administrative process.
The real power of our Skills Checks lies in the accountability from the delegate to choose and prioritise their new goals.

© Debbie Engelbrecht 2021

Debbie is the MD at Staff Training, providing soft skills and leadership training for South Africans since 2000. Should you wish for Staff Training to put together an annual training package for you covering aspects of management, wellness and self-mastery, please email

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