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Final Buy-In

As noted in Stakeholder Communications, it is important to ensure that key stakeholders are involved in the process before a program has been planned, along the way, and especially when decisions are to be made. At this decision-making stage, after considerations have been explored about delivery methods, cost factors have been considered, and other questions answered, it is critical that stakeholders have the opportunity to discuss, explore, and provide input before final decisions are made.

Be sure to hold meetings with those whose areas are affected in terms of training participants, instructors, content expertise, those whose budgets may be involved, and others who may also have a stake in the training's effectiveness. It is also important to seek input from diverse constituencies to ensure an inclusive environment for all program participants.

Final buy-in or agreement to actually design the training (the "go-ahead decision") must be discussed with those who will fund the development time and provide other necessary resources. While sponsors as well as numerous others are stakeholders, only some stakeholders are the financial sponsors. The final agreement from those who will provide the finances is necessary for the go-ahead decision.

While it may be obvious there are numerous stakeholders involved in the development of training programs, it is not always as obvious to contact them at certain stages. It is not unusual to assume that an early conversation in a meeting was sufficient to ensure continued support. However, even if support remains present and solid, thorough communication and follow-up are generally highly appreciated.

At the agreement stage, be sure you have confirmed understandings in writing. In this way, both the designer/developer and stakeholders know their understandings match one another.

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