DVD review: Sheila and Andrew meet a mnemonic

WHAM! Getting them to do what you want them to do
Format DVD
From Scott Bradbury
Price £995 + VAT
Contact www.scottbradbury.com

In the April edition of Training & Coaching Today, I reviewed A Question of Evidence, the first programme from Scott Bradbury. I found it a trustworthy product and I’m pleased to see that its next DVD is similarly solid in content and well-planned.

This time the company tackles performance management and has put together a couple of scenarios under the Wham! banner.

Now in this context, ‘Wham’ is not the perma-tanned duo from the 1980s. It’s a mnemonic about getting the best out of people. It stands for What, How, Able and Motivated, and serves to show that to get the best out of people you need their commitment to perform well.

The film demonstrates the learning journeys of two frustrated managers, Sheila and Andrew, who start to have success when they put Wham into operation.

There are very few original formats left for training films to explore, but Scott Bradbury has come up with a novel approach.

Sheila and Andrew are married. She works at a software firm, he at a district council. They sit and moan at home about the problems in their respective offices until their teenage daughter, Andrea, explains the Wham approach, which formed part of a business studies talk at her college.

We watch Andrew and Sheila applying Wham at work, but we also see them back on the sofa chatting about their progress. These domestic interludes are a simple but clever device. The learning points are reinforced by taking characters out of the workplace, which adds a natural pause to proceedings.

The film tackles performance issues in a detailed and sensitive manner. It would give most managers the confidence to approach difficult people, but any purchaser could be confident that the DVD is advocating a best practice approach to tricky conversations.

There is plenty of ethical and honest advice, such as “focus on the problem, not the person”, and “a motivational problem is the individual’s problem not yours”.

The accompanying guide offers many ideas about how to use the film and supporting material. It includes five ready-made training sessions on relevant subjects, such as preparing for a conversation about objectives and standards.

Junior to middle managers and project leaders are the target audience, and it could be a boon to their communication skills and prowess as managers. This package is great value for money.

Useful? 5 out of 5
Well-written? 4 out of 5
Value for money? 5 out of 5

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