This chapter will deal with conditions specific to the work environment from which trainees come to training and to which they will return after the event. For the purposes of this chapter, the work environment factors that help or hinder learning transfer can be attributed to the presence or absence of support from three sources – peers, the organization in general and, most importantly, the trainee’s manager. Peer support refers to the extent to which those around the trainee reinforce and support the use of learning on-the-job. It includes behaviours such as being open to ideas brought back from a learning event, giving feedback on the use of new learning, and in general, giving the benefit of their own learning and experience in a positive way. Support for learning from the organization can take a number of forms. A lack of undue constraints in performing one’s job is one of them. The organization’s openness in terms of
communication and the general ease or otherwise with which new things can be done is another. Support from a training participant’s manager is perhaps the most crucial, and can be provided in many ways. Examples include discussion of training needs and outcomes before and after attendance at an event, setting performance goals, as well as the empowerment of the individual to apply what they’ve learned without undue interference. Given their critical role in facilitating learning transfer, the constituent factors will be discussed in some detail in this chapter. They will be discussed first in the context of their combined effect, and later in terms of particular effects they have on transfer.