The Development Pipeline

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Conventional wisdom tells us to help others learn with feedback, but the more productive approach is to help the person reflect on where they want to go: their goals and success factors.


David Peterson is the Director of Executive Coaching & Leadership at Google. Peterson lays out a framework called the Development Pipeline in an article published in the Evidence-Based Coaching Handbook. He suggests which captures the five ‘necessary and sufficient conditions for learning’:


All five of these conditions need to be met for effective learning to take place. So, if you want to change behaviors, you have to ‘unblock’ the narrowest part of the pipeline.

Peterson found that optimal learning is a constraint problem: unblock the constraint and increase the learning.

Let’s look at an example. Imagine a teammate who’s taking on too much work. They already understand that they need to delegate more to their team, but they’re concerned that they don’t have the time to delegate effectively.

In this scenario, the teammate has the insight, capability, and opportunity to delegate but they lack motivation and accountability.

This Development Pipeline can be a useful and important step in developing insight or what we at AVA call ASSESSING of your situation to begin your plan for ADVANCING.