Laurel and Associates, Ltd. – Madison, WI

Capabilities Statement

Who We Are

Laurel and Associates, Ltd. is a woman-owned small business that builds and strengthens managerial, employee development and technical skills through the design and delivery of participatory classroom training. We also support management by providing organizational development and workplace performance improvement services.

We have the proven ability to translate content of any kind into highly effective participatory classroom learning programs. We work with technical subject matter experts. We also have our own content expertise in a wide range of topic areas, including: change management, communication, interpersonal relations, conflict management, supervision, management, leadership, organizational development, performance management, personal management, presentation skills, teamwork, and both generational and gender differences.

What We Do:

We provide workplace learning and performance training and consulting services to support organizational success.

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Our areas of expertise include:

  • Training Needs Assessment- We investigate to determine if training is the appropriate solution and, if so, identify the performance gaps, the relevant content and the target audience.
  • Curriculum Design- We specialize in working with subject matter experts to transform technical lecture-based training into interactive participant-based training proven to be more effective in building skills.
  • Training Program Design- We excel in prioritizing and organizing multiple and diverse content areas to create a cohesive and effective skill building training series.
  • Classroom Training Delivery- Our skill-building training is tailored to meet client needs and uses participatory learning techniques based on the UCLA Mastery Teaching Model, adult learning principles, accelerated learning and evidence-based research.
  • Train the Trainer- We help experienced and novice trainers create more effective program content, increase the probability that learning will occur through a variety of learning activities and audiovisual aids, and facilitate more effective presentations.
  • Program Specific Train the Trainer- We ensure that trainers have the expertise and capability to facilitate highly technical and specialized training content.
  • Trainer Coaching and Mentoring- We provide ongoing support to trainers in order to develop and strengthen their presentation and facilitation skills.
  • Trainer Certification- We assess trainer performance against best practice criteria to certify
    trainers to deliver highly technical or specialized training programs.
  • Training Program Audit- We use a proven collaborative audit process, working with audited trainers to review and improve the quality and effectiveness of their training decisions so that desired learning goals are met.
  • Training Design and Delivery: We improve the knowledge, skills and performance of our clients’ employees and supervisors through skill-building participatory classroom training programs. We also work with subject matter experts to transform technical lecture-based training into more effective interactive participant-based training.
  • Training Quality Assurance: We improve the quality, consistency and effectiveness of our clients’ internal training programs through train the trainer programs, trainer certification and training program audits. We also provide ongoing coaching and mentoring to trainers to improve their curriculum design, training delivery and group facilitation skills.

Why We Do It

We want to help our clients increase the probability that their learners will learn faster and retain that learning longer. We know that the more learners are engaged and stimulated mentally, emotionally, and physically, the more likely they are to learn and to retain what they have learned.

The accelerated learning techniques that we use create the ultimate participant-centered training experience. They draw on recent scientific research into the structure of the brain and individual learning preferences.

The most rewarding part of our job is seeing the light go on in employees, and manager’s, eyes as they realize they now have the skills they need and the confidence in their own competence to use those skills effectively.

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Our Training Philosophy

Based upon our years of training experience and what we know about how adults learn, we have developed the following five-point philosophy of training:

  • The training must be practical, relevant, and immediately applicable. For this reason, all training is tailored to meet our client’s needs.
  • The participants are more likely to learn when they have a choice regarding the content, can get involved in the learning process, and have an enjoyable experience. This is ensured through a wide variety of participant-centered learning activities.
  • Unless time is scheduled for the employees to practice new skills learned in the training session, they are not likely to use those skills once the training is completed. As a result, all training includes hands-on application exercises.
  • It is important to build into the training a way of holding the employees accountable for using the new skills. Learning contracts, personal action plans, and follow up sessions are several ways to accomplish this.
  • Training can only accomplish what the organizational culture and systems will support.  Management is involved in the development of the training, as well as in the active support and reinforcement of the use of new skills learned in the training.

How We Do It

We design and deliver participatory skill-building workshops tailored to meet the needs of our clients. We also collaborate with our clients to help them address their workplace learning and performance challenges.

Relevant: Every training program is designed or tailored to meet the specific client’s needs

Practical: The focus is on practical application, not theory

Research Based: The training format, content and activities reflect research regarding how learning occurs and is retained

Affirming: The training validates the participants’ existing skills and builds their
confidence in their ability to effectively use newly acquired skills

Results-Oriented: The intent is to build or strengthen skills through in-class learning contracts and opportunities for hands-on application of new techniques

Participative: Ninety percent of the training involves interactive exercises

Enjoyable: The training is designed to ensure that the participants feel comfortable, are successful and enjoy the learning experience

Applied: Each participant commits in writing to apply specific techniques learned in the class

Effective: Participants can immediately apply their new skills on the job

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Examples of Our Scope

We have provided training needs assessment, curriculum design, training delivery, train the trainer, trainer certification and training audit services for a wide range of industries and specialty areas. These include:

  • Business Management
  • Call Center
  • College Management
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Energy Optimization
  • Financial Management
  • Gender Relations
  • Government
  • Health Education
  • Health Management
  • Industrial Development
  • Performance Management
  • Public Sector Leadership
  • Regulatory Enforcement
  • Student Leadership
  • Teacher Development
  • Transportation
  • Utilities

Business Management

Strengthening Health Outcomes through the Private Sector (SHOPS) Project-Kenya, USAID- for Banyan Global

Curriculum Design and Training Pilot: Designed the curriculum, facilitator guides and PowerPoint slides for a twenty-two-day Business for Health training series for private medical practitioners. Piloted the program in Nairobi, Kenya.

Train the Trainer and Trainer Certification: Conducted a five-day Business for Health Train the Trainer program in Nairobi, Kenya to prepare and certify local trainers to deliver the Business for Health program.

Call Center

Bureau of Driver Services Call Center, Division of Motor Vehicles, Wisconsin Department of Transportation

Curriculum Design:  Designed a fifteen-day new employee orientation and training program for new call center employees. This program introduced the organization, the mission of the call center, technical motor vehicle and driver policies and procedures, and specialized telephone and computer systems. It also included shadowing current call center employees.

College Management

Strengthening Health Outcomes through the Private Sector (SHOPS) Project –Zambia, USAID- for Banyan Global

Training Needs Assessment: Created a training needs assessment that staff in Lusaka, Zambia used in meeting with the owners and staff of small private medical teaching institutions in Zambia.

Curriculum Design and Training Pilot: On the basis of the results of the training needs assessment, designed the curriculum, facilitator guides and PowerPoint slides for an eight-day Business Management Training series for Small Private Medical Teaching Institutions in Zambia, then piloted it in Lusaka, Zambia:

Entrepreneurship

Open Society Institute-Croatia, Soros Foundation

Curriculum Design and Train the Trainer: Designed and facilitated two five-day Train the Trainer classes for the business and academic staff of small business development consulting centers that were in the process of being established in Osijek and Dubrovnik, Croatia. The intention was to prepare them to teach entrepreneurship using training best practices.

Curriculum Design: Over a period of four years, consulted with professors in the Economics Department of J.J. Strossmeyer University in Osijek, Croatia to design the first Eastern European participant-based Masters Degree program in Entrepreneurship. Trained the professors, audited their programs, and facilitated coaching training as part of the program. This program has resulted in the creation of more than 40 new businesses in Croatia.

Energy Optimization

National Compressed Air Challenge, U.S. Department of Energy

Curriculum Design: Designed the curriculum, facilitator guides and audiovisual aids for the eight-hour Fundamentals of Compressed Air Systems and the two-day Refresher Training for the National Compressed Air Challenge (CAC), which have been the highest rated training programs provided by the U.S. Department of Energy. An evaluation of CAC training participants found that 75% of the end users made efficiency improvements to their compressed air systems, saving an average of $7,428.

Train the Trainer and Trainer Certification: Designed the curriculum and audiovisual aids to train and certify compressed air consultants and vendors to deliver the Fundamentals of Compressed Air Systems and the Refresher Training. Facilitated this two-day Train the Trainer program three times over a period of ten years.

Training Audits:  Audited the certified trainers around the country to provide guidance and coaching feedback to ensure quality and consistency in training delivery.

Financial Management

Citizens Bank, Flint, Michigan

Curriculum Design: Over a period of five years, designed curriculum for a variety of banking topics related to branch manager skills, the branch operating model and how to make the perfect sale.

Train the Trainer: Provided train the trainer programs, including: the three-day Increasing Training Effectiveness and the two-day Facilitating a Positive Learning Experience.

Gender Relations

Banyan Global

Curriculum Design:  Designed a three-day Designing a Gender-Transformative Results Framework training for inclusion in Banyan Global’s proposal to gain an Advantage IDIQ contract, which was successful.

Econoprint, Inc.

Training Delivery: Designed and delivered the two-day Preventing Sexual Harassment.

Highsmith, Inc.

Training Delivery:  Designed and delivered the one-day Communicating Across the Gender Gap.

Government

Wisconsin Department of Transportation

Curriculum Design and Train the Trainer: Designed the curriculum and job aids, created facilitator guides, and trained the trainers to deliver the two-day New Employee Orientation for the three modal Divisions of the Department.

Court Services and Offender Supervision Agency for the District of Columbia

Curriculum Design: Converted technical lecture-based training curriculum into skill-building participant-centered training for the 35-day Community Supervision Officer Academy.

Health Education

Community Academic Partnership Grant, Wisconsin Hospital Association

Training Needs Assessment: Facilitated four focus groups to determine health consumer training needs.

Curriculum Design: On the basis of the focus group feedback, designed the curriculum, facilitator guides and PowerPoint slides for three four-hour modules: Tools for Making Health Care Choices, Using Health Care Internet Tools, and How to Talk to Your Health Care Provider.

Train the Trainer: Designed the curriculum and PowerPoint slides and then facilitated a one-day Train the Trainer program to prepare nursing association representatives, social workers and patient advocates to deliver the three consumer education modules.

Health Management

Strengthening Health Outcomes through the Private Sector (SHOPS) Project –Nigeria, US AID, for Banyan Global

Curriculum Design: Designed the curriculum, facilitator guides and PowerPoint slides for the five-day Managing a Healthy Business for small private medical practices.

Train the Trainer and Trainer Certification:  Designed and facilitated a four-day Train the Trainer program in Lagos, Nigeria to certify trainers to conduct Managing a Healthy Business in Nigeria.

Train the Trainer and Trainer Certification: Designed the curriculum, facilitator guides and PowerPoint slides for a three-day program: Basics of Business Counseling. Facilitated and then subsequently trained trainers in Lagos, Nigeria.

Industrial Development

United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO)

Framework Document Development: Created the Development Framework for the UNIDO Training Package on Fan System Optimization. This included the goals, objectives, targeted participants, workshop delivery modalities, curriculum outlines and indicators of outputs achievement, delivery modality effectiveness and impact for four different training programs. It also included the national trainees selection criteria and procedure for the six-day Fan System Optimization Expert Training.

Curriculum Design: Worked with international subject matter experts to design the curriculum, PowerPoint slides and facilitator guides for a one-day and a two-day Fan System Optimization (FSO) End User Training, a half- day Fan System Equipment Vendor training, and a six-day FSO Expert Training program for delivery in South Africa. Also revised the materials as necessary for delivery in Malaysia and Russia.

Performance Management

University of Wisconsin Credit Union

Curriculum Design and Facilitation: Completed a six-month program of providing training and consultation to all managers, supervisors and selected staff in the development of position descriptions and performance standards. Part of this process included redefining organizational roles, clarifying organizational goals, and developing human resource development policies and procedures.

Public Sector Leadership

Rock County Leadership Development Program, Rock County, Wisconsin

Curriculum Design and Delivery: Designed and delivered six leadership development modules to build or strengthen the skills of current and potential public sector leaders.

Regulatory Enforcement

Bureau of Storage Tank Regulation, Wisconsin Department of Commerce

Curriculum Design and Facilitation: Designed and delivered the one-day Conflict Prevention, Management and Resolution Training program for petroleum inspectors who had to perform new regulatory enforcement activities that could close down businesses.

Student Leadership

ASPIRE Series, Willis L. Jones Leadership Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Curriculum Design: Designed the curriculum, facilitator guides and PowerPoint slides for a four-module leadership series based on the Authentic Leadership Development model: What is Authentic Leadership?, What Makes You Tick?, How to be Your Best Self, and How Feedback Can Help You Grow.

Teacher Development

Allendale School District, South Carolina

Train the Trainer: Designed and delivered a four-day training program based on the UCLA Mastery Teaching Model to elementary and secondary school teachers and principals.

Training Audits: Audited fifteen teachers in the elementary, middle and secondary schools against teaching best practices. Recommended remedial coaching activities, where necessary.

Transportation

COMPASS Program, Wisconsin Department of Transportation

Curriculum Design: Over a four-year period, designed the initial two-day program of Quality Assurance Standards for Highway Maintenance, updated the program as standards changed, designed the two-day Refresher course and updated the refresher course when standards changed.

Train the Trainer: Conducted a four-day Train the Trainer program for the COMPASS Quality Assurance Pilot Standards Team for two consecutive years as new members joined the team.

Utilities

Southern California Edison

Curriculum Design and Train the Trainer: Designed and facilitated the two-day Technical Trainers’ Toolbox and the one-day How to Invite Adults to Learn for utility and consumer trainers.

Training Audits:  Audited five of the most popular consumer training classes conducted at both the Community Training and Assistance Center and the Agricultural Training and Assistance Center to create awareness, increase knowledge, change attitudes and affect behavior related to energy use. Recommended significant revision of programs based on adult learning best practices.