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Attention to Detail Training


In their defence, the processes and systems are dull as dishwater but that is a longer game. I'm currently looking for solutions to try and stem these errors.

Does anyone know of any training techniques that may help our staffs Attention to Detail?

Howard Pearson

6 Responses

  1. skill or will?
    it is unlikely that the staff are actually incapable of paying attention to detail, it is more likely that they are simply bored/overworked/can’t really se the point or similar.

    I came across this with members of an HR service centre team a couple of years ago.

    The solution was to run a day long session in which we looked at Process Mapping and Downstream Impact Analysis as tools and then they mapped their processes and assessed the probable downstream impact of a range of failures on their part in relation to a series of simple case studies.

    It was a real eye opener for them as well as equiping them with two useful tools and getting a visual map of their processes (which they then went on to improve later)

    Their error rate fell enormously the following week

    I hope this helps


  2. accuracy and personality
    Hi HoHoward. This may help. There is a strong link between a willingness and contentment to work with detail, and personality type. If staff are missing important details it could mean that they do not have an appropriate personality type for the work, which means they won’t have the right attitude to the work. I would recommend you look at the Thomas International DISC method of profiling. It’s quick and instantly informative.

    You can get indications of work related stress, which also might be problem, and some indication of what you will need to do to train those who do not have a perfect personality fit to the job demands.


  3. Detail focus

    Hi Howard,

    For me, and I suspect many like me, it is all about motivation.

    I wrote a 15,000 word thesis for my master’s degree with no spelling errors or typos because I really wanted to communicate my ideas and thinking. I did not want mistakes to get in the way.

    Similarly for an event I go into amazing amounts of detail analysis so that those attending are not focusing on noise, poor surroundings etc.

    For my own purposes I will often miss these aspects.



  4. Underlying skills?
    I believe there are some great ideas here, but would just like to add another – could be relevant depending on the group of staff….

    In one of my client organisations, we found that there were many little mistakes being entered into databases and records. Besides looking at a number of things already mentioned here, we also did a check on the key underlying skills of staff – this may not sound important, but it is quite a challenge to ensure everyone in the organisation possesses up to date underlying skills. Often they may be regularly using high level language skills at work, but their numerical skills may suffer (and vice versa).

    You may have already taken this into account, but if not, it’s interesting to check out whether your staff’s underlying skills would shape up. Look at ‘Test the Company’ too on this site:

    Christine Jones

  5. Herd cats or hire monkeys ?
    It bugs me that ‘training’ is seen as the solution to every problem, unless the definition includes awareness of the sort Russ was describing. It’s the same with the BBCs ‘training’ response to faking the Blue Peter phone-in.

    If these people’s lives depended on it, they *would* get it right. Depending on personality, some would need to try harder than others, as some people even enjoy the attention to detail, as suggested by Nick.

    So ideally, find people whose preference is for detail, make those less inclined aware of the consequences, and redeploy those who can’t be bothered as the ROI (dare I say) for them is not worth it.



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