3 Pillars of Corporate Training

The 70-20-10 Model of Corporate Training: What It Is and How to Apply It

Corporate training is an essential aspect of organizational development designed to enhance employee skills, knowledge, and performance. It is crucial to employ effective training models that align with the needs of modern workplaces. The practice will help you to optimize these initiatives. The 70-20-10 model is one of the most prominent frameworks for corporate training.

According to this model, workplace learning is most effective when it includes three components. These three components encompass 70% learning by doing, 20% learning from peers, and 10% formal learning. In this article, we will delve into the 70-20-10 model and its components.

We will also provide valuable insights into how to apply the 70-20-10 model.

Introduction to Corporate Training 70-20-10

The 70-20-10 model is often referred to as the 70-20-10 rule. It is a corporate training framework emphasizing the importance of experiential, social, and formal learning in the workplace.

Morgan McCall, Robert A. Eichinger, and Michael M. Lombardo developed this workplace learning framework at the Center for Creative Leadership in the 1980s. Later, 70:20:10 Institute popularized this workplace learning framework.

This model suggests that individuals learn best in a holistic learning environment that combines different approaches. These approaches serve as the 3 pillars of corporate training.

Breakdown of Corporate Training 70-20-10 components

Let's take a closer look at each component of the 70-20-10 model and understand what it includes.

  • Learning by doing: 70%

The largest portion of the 70-20-10 model is dedicated to "learning by doing." This component recognizes that a significant portion of an individual's learning occurs through hands-on experiences. They learn most of their skills, real-world challenges, and the application of knowledge in the workplace.

Here is how the learning by doing component works:

Experiential Learning

Employees gain valuable skills and knowledge by actively engaging in their job roles. They can even expand their workplace learning by taking on new responsibilities. You can accelerate employees' learning process by encouraging them to leave their comfort zones. It will also help them to get courage and tackle new challenges.


Organizations should create an environment that fosters experimentation and innovation. Encouraging your employees to experiment with new ideas and approaches. Consequently, it can lead to valuable insights and growth.


Reflection is a critical aspect of experiential learning. Employees should be encouraged to reflect on their positive and negative experiences. It will help them to extract valuable lessons and insights for future improvement.

How to get started with learning by doing?

Employees should get most of their learning opportunities through their work experience. You can certainly achieve this in multiple ways. These ways can range from learning a new skill to navigating challenges coming into your role.

However, here is what organizations can do to improve their learning through working experience:

  • Offer employees new projects that can expand their role’s scope.
  • Broaden the decision-making authority of your employees.
  • Give opportunities to your employees regarding project or people management.
  • Include your employees in strategic meetings more.
  • Peer to Peer Learning: 20%

The second component of the 70-20-10 model is "peer-to-peer learning." It acknowledges that people often learn from interactions with colleagues, mentors, and team members. So, here we have different aspects involved in 20% peer-to-peer learning:


Organizations should encourage collaboration and teamwork within their workplace. When employees work together on projects or share knowledge, skills, and experiences, they can learn from each other's strengths and expertise.

Mentoring and Coaching

Implement mentoring and coaching programs where experienced employees guide and support newer ones. This practice fosters knowledge transfer and skill development.

Communities of Practice

Create communities of practice within the organization where employees with shared interests or roles can come together to exchange ideas and best practices.

The 70-20-10 Model of Corporate Training: What It Is and How to Apply It

How to get started with Peer-to-Peer Learning: 20%?

In this component, the key to workplace learning is to let your employees learn through peer interactions. Employees should get a chance to collaborate and learn from their colleagues, managers, or even senior leaders. Here we have some ideas that can help you nurture a learning atmosphere in your office:

  • Launch a mentoring program with managers.
  • You can set up one or two leadership coaching sessions for employees with senior leaders.
  • Organizations should value the cross-functional involvement of their employees in projects.
  • Provide your employees with consistent opportunities to collaborate, learn, and give feedback.
  • Formal Learning: 10%

The final component of the corporate learning 70 20 10 model is "formal learning." While it has the smallest share, it still plays a crucial role in employee development. This component includes structured and planned learning activities, for example:

Training Workshops

Organize workshops, seminars, and training sessions that provide employees with structured learning opportunities. These can cover various topics, from technical skills to leadership development.

Online Courses

Organizations should plan to offer online courses and e-learning modules. These modules will allow employees to acquire new knowledge at their own pace. These can be particularly valuable for remote or distributed teams.


Support your employees in pursuing relevant certifications or qualifications. It can enhance their expertise and professionalism.

How to get started with Formal Learning: 10%?

Here is when you need to involve formal learning in your corporate training. You can draw your efforts towards setting up a professional development program formally. Try stepping beyond traditional group training in your organization.

However, here is how you can get started with it:

  • Offer your employees readable content, videos, and webinars.
  • Share relevant workplace learning sources from thought leadership in the industry.
  • Encourage your employees to get relevant certifications
  • Emphasize the importance of professional development classes.
  • Also, consider hosting panel discussions and seminars.

Why Corporate Training 70 20 10 model is effective?

The Corporate Training 70-20-10 model is effective for several reasons. Here we listed some important ones.

  1. Ensured scalability

    The 70-20-10 model is highly scalable because it leverages various modes of learning. The 70% learning-by-doing component allows organizations to integrate on-the-job learning seamlessly. It makes this corporate learning model suitable for both large and small teams.

    In addition, organizations can adapt and expand training programs easily as their workforce grows or changes. So, overall, it is a flexible approach that accommodates organizational growth and transformation.

  2. Improved employee engagement

    The model promotes active engagement and participation from employees. Learning by doing and peer-to-peer interactions inherently involve employees in their learning journeys. The practice will make them more invested in the process.

    Employees retain information and apply their knowledge more effectively when actively learning. Consequently, this leads to increased job satisfaction and a sense of empowerment.

  3. Diversified learning approach.

    The 70-20-10 model recognizes that people have different learning preferences and styles. It caters to various individuals within the organization by incorporating a diversified approach to learning.

    Some employees may thrive in hands-on, experiential learning. In contrast, others may prefer the structure of formal training. Even more, peer-to-peer learning allows employees to learn from colleagues who may have unique insights and experiences.

Tips on how to apply the 70-20-10 model.

Do you want to know how to apply the 70-20-10 model? Here we have some helpful tips that you must consider in this regard.

Blend workplace learning approaches

Organizations should strive to create a blended learning approach to implement the 70-20-10 model successfully. The approach should combine three components of the 70-20-10 model.

This approach means designing training programs incorporating experiential, peer-to-peer, and formal learning elements.For example, employees could be encouraged to apply their newly acquired knowledge in real-world scenarios after a formal training workshop. At the same time, they will also prefer seeking guidance from colleagues.

Create a learning culture in your organization.

Organizational culture plays a significant role in the success of the 70-20-10 model. Therefore, leaders should create an organizational learning culture to improve workplace learning. They can consider leading by example. Demonstrate a commitment to learning and development for this.

Besides that, you can also encourage knowledge sharing. You can do this by promoting open communication and knowledge-sharing platforms. Above all, acknowledge and reward employees for their learning efforts and achievements.

Provide your employees access to valuable learning resources

Effective corporate training requires continuous improvement. Organizations should gauge the success of the 70-20-10 model by:

  • Gathering employee feedback to understand their learning experiences and identify areas for improvement.
  • Monitoring employees' skill development and knowledge acquisition over time.
  • Using data and feedback to make necessary adjustments to training programs and strategies.

Don’t forget to embrace technology.

Organizations should leverage technology to facilitate and enhance learning experiences across all three components. For example:

  • Use simulations and virtual environments for hands-on training for learning by doing.
  • Implement social learning platforms and collaboration tools for peer-to-peer learning.
  • Utilize e-learning platforms and digital resources for online courses and certifications for formal learning

Final Thoughts

The 70-20-10 model represents a powerful framework for enhancing corporate training and workplace learning. Organizations can create comprehensive and effective training programs. They can do so by recognizing the importance of experiential, peer-to-peer, and formal learning. The practice will lead to improved employee performance and organizational success.