ISPI's LEAP Year Report

Live the 10 Standards of Performance Improvement

  • Develop additional certification and accreditation opportunities.
    We have repeatedly heard about the challenges to meet the high standards set for acquiring designation as a Certified Performance Technologist (CPT), specifically that our newest and least experienced practitioners do not have access to credentials and certifications. Our existing 10 Standards are scalable and provide a framework for introducing new certifications/credentials. ISPI is working to develop certification levels within the existing framework of ISPI’s 10 Standards that are achievable for new practitioners, efforts which will ultimately count toward the CPT designation. 

    ISPI has partnered with KNO Worldwide (Steven Kelly) and The Institute for Needs Assessments and Evaluation (Dr. Ingrid Guerra-Lopez) to be the issuing body for their Performance Assessment and Analysis Expertise (PAAX) certification (

    ISPI will also be running a pilot with Kanava in South Africa for their ISD Certification. 

  • Promote our new accreditation agreement with Hale Associates and The Institute for Performance Improvement.
    ISPI has partnered with Judy Hale to promote ISPI’s accreditation program. Judy will be conducted PR and outreach for ISPI at the Masie Conference in October 2017, the Training Magazine Conference in February 2018, and Certification Network Group throughout 2018 and 2019. ISPI has been working closely with Judy to develop marketing materials for these meetings. ISPI has already secured one partner for accreditation: the Utility Safety and Ops Leadership Network.
  • Examine expanding our educational offerings through new workshops and partnerships with our members. 
    ISPI is committed to expanding opportunities for education and professional development, as well as providing a space for our members to share their knowledge based on their skills, talents, and visions for the future. In November 2017, ISPI invited all Gold Level members to submit a proposal for ISPI’s Virtual Institutes, which will kickoff in January 2018. ISPI’s Virtual Institutes will be bi-monthly, low fee-based learning opportunities for members (priced according to membership levels). We recognize that while budgets may be limited, the desire to continue to learn should not be confined to singular learning opportunities, especially in our field. We also recognize that ISPI has content experts ready and willing to share their knowledge. A Virtual Institute is a way to offer a low-fee, virtual-based classroom led by an expert, for a 3-4 hour professional development experience.

ISPI will be planning institutes that focus on academic research, so students, researchers, professors, and practitioners may have a space to discuss and craft valuable research for publication and presentation.

  • Seek a multidiscipline approach to our conferences and publications. 
    The breadth of performance improvement requires the integration and synthesis of many different and varying disciplines from business, social sciences, education, economics, engineering, etc. As such our conferences and publications should highlight this multidisciplinary approach, and ISPI has struggled in this area. Our fall symposium and annual conference are focused around design thinking and meaningful work, which are not traditional core performance improvement topics; however, offer insights and practices that complement any performance consultant’s toolkit. Publications have long lead times for developing each individual issue, and we hope to be forward leaning on the 2018 symposium and 2019 conference to incorporate those themes into PIJ and PIQ.
  • Finalize fee structures for developing countries for growth of our membership and profession.
    The desire for performance improvement and request for ISPI partnerships is growing internationally, especially in the Asian Pacific region. As a North American-based Society, what works here will not likely work everywhere. We require policies and processes for ensuring open, fair, and transparent relationships with new ISPI Chapters, ISPI Networks, and business partners in these emerging regions. The 2017-2018 Board of Directors includes two international members, who are working diligently to provide outreach and engage in opportunities to grow ISPI around the world. Currently, ISPI offers 50% off Individual and Corporate memberships, CPT and Institute fees, and conference registration for individuals and organizations from Developing Countries, as identified by the United Nations. In addition, ISPI has built relationships through our Corporate member program, which includes FITC - Financial Institutions Training Center in Lagos, Nigeria; GEC Corporation in Tbilisi, Georgia; and Sinotrac Consulting in China. Additionally, ISPI Board President, Scott Casad, travelled to China in October 2017 to begin conversations regarding strengthening an international partnership with this country.
  • Formalize a Society marketing strategy and action plan.
    We require a systematic and systemic approach for communicating who we are, what we do, and why we are needed. This will help drive demand, which in return drives revenue. An overarching, long-term strategy for growth will be developed as well as focused action plans for promoting our conference/symposium, Chapters, workshops, and certifications/accreditation. ISPI has been fortunate to have volunteers develop marketing plans for both our Regional Symposium and Annual Conference. In addition, staff have taken on developing regular eblasts to our entire distribution lists, as well as segmented eblasts for membership and CPT renewals, and messaging to our Chapter leaders, Conference speakers, and other groups. ISPI now posts daily updates to our social media outlets on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter to ensure our members receive updates on news, events, and discounts. .

Engage Your Local ISPI Chapter

  • Reestablish our relationship and support of local ISPI Chapters
    We will look to connect with other professional associations meeting in the local community, establish community service projects to grow ISPI pro bono consulting services, and formalize agreements with international chapters and partners. The Chapter Partnership Committee has strengthened and improved the current Chapter Affiliation Agreement, which has been approved by the Board of Directors and will be promulgated to North American and International Chapters for signature. Part of this initiative is in concert with our goal to build partnerships with International groups and explore the establishment of Regional Networks around the global. 

    In September 2017, the CPC and Board President co-hosted a webinar for Chapter Leaders to discuss goals of Chapters and committed to host quarterly webinar meetings for Chapters. These webinars are recorded and made available to our Chapter leaders to watch and share with their local Chapter members. The CPC and Board President have also set dates for the 2018 Chapter Leader calls.

    In addition, ISPI partnered with the Hampton Roads Chapter as part of the 2017 Regional Symposium, where Hampton Roads received a 10% revenue share of the Symposium registrations. These funds will help the Chapter provide quality programs and outreach to their local members. In October of 2018, ISPI will be partnering with the Michigan Chapter for the 2018 Regional Symposium, which will also receive 10% of the revenue from this event.
  • Expand the community service program to Chapters
    With the help of Board of Director’s President-Elect Rose Noxon and Potomac Chapter’s Bill Yeager (plus many, many more volunteers!), ISPI has an established and documented pro bono consulting community service program (CSP). Following successes with the Settlement Music School in Philadelphia and most recently the Kidney Foundation in Montreal, we are ready to roll out CSP to Chapters as an added engagement activity for giving back, being better, developing relationships and growing membership. The potential synergies with universities through the “academic guild” are exciting and game-changing for ISPI and Chapters. We are very excited to announce our first Chapter-sponsored service project with the Boeing Chapter. In conjunction with the annual conference in Seattle this April, Boeing was able to connect ISPI with Victim Support Services and has provided project leadership to kick-start our 3rd annual community service project. We are thrilled about this growing opportunity to give back and share our performance improvement expertise.

Apply Performance Improvement Research

  • Reinstitute a performance improvement research agenda and evidence-based practice to move the field forward through our publications, conferences, and relationship with academia.
    This long-term initiative requires strengthening of our relationship with academia and a careful assessment of what and how performance improvement is framed within the “future of work”. Since performance improvement’s inception over 50-years ago, how work is done, who is doing work, where work is done, and why work is done have evolved. Our theories, models, principles, and practices have also evolved and now require another refresh to remain relevant in light of exponential technology growth and growing changes in social norms with new generations of the work force. Once financially stable and sustainable, ISPI will endeavor to reenergize a thoughtful and concerted research agenda.
  • Establish a university consortium or academic guild.
    Academia wants greater connection and deeper relationships with ISPI, and we do too! The concept of a guild will guide how those interactions and support can be strengthened. We have an untapped opportunity to grow synergy between ISPI, universities and local chapters, and in the process, create greater meaning and influence. ISPI has been hosting meetings for an “Academic Guild”. Even in its early stages, this group has taken a forward-thinking approach to establish roots with university programs. 

    At the 2018 ISPI Annual Conference, the Academic Guild will host a one-day “Unconference,” with the following goals: Increase conference participation by students, faculty and alumni; Increase membership in ISPI; and Increase academic relevant offerings in conference. 

    The Guild is also reviewing a list of US based academic programs to refine and identify potential key partners. The Guild and ISPI will partner to reach out to these universities, and take steps to build a consortium among these campuses.

    In September 2017, ISPI launched its Student Discount rate, which offers 50% off all ISPI products and services. ISPI also launched a special student discount rate for student speakers and participants at the 2018 Annual Conference. ISPI also established a faculty discount rate to incentivize faculty to bring students with them to the Conference, while reducing costs for faculty registration.
  • When and where we can, we will synthesize existing and emerging research from outside performance improvement that augments and complements our practice.
    Similar to “seek a multidiscipline approach to our conferences and publications” under Living the 10 Standards, the synthesis and integration of research is important to the practice of performance improvement. ISPI must find the means to make available research findings and recommendations so that are understandable and actionable by our members. Currently, this effort exceeds ISPI’s resources, staff, and volunteers. As our relationship with academia strengthens, there will likely be opportunities to explore a broader application and sharing of research.

Plunge into Our Annual Conferences

  • Deliver a Fall Innovation Symposium
    The ISPI Regional Innovation Symposium was held October 6-8, 2017, at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia. The Symposium theme, Transformation & Innovation by Design, integrated design thinking with performance improvement to help attendees think about and resolve real world performance issues. Through the trifecta of a local chapter (Hampton Roads), a university (Old Dominion University), and an ISPI Advocate (U.S. Coast Guard), ISPI facilitated a three-day immersive learning and networking experience that wove design thinking and performance improvement into new and agile consulting and problem-solving tools and techniques. The Regional Symposium hosted 60 participants, 13 presentations, 2 keynotes, and after hours networking opportunities for attendees.

    The 2018 Regional Symposium will be held October 18-21 at Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan. ISPI will partner with the ISPI Michigan Chapter, ISPI Advocate One10, and Wayne State University for this event. ISPI will also host a pro bono community service project with a local Detroit non-profit seeking performance improvement consulting to realize change and drive their organization forward.
  • ISPI 2018 Annual Conference
    The ISPI Conference Committee has been working diligently (since before the close of the 2017 Annual Conference!) to re-think, re-design, and re-imagine how we conceptualize the work that we do, and how we bring that knowledge to our members. For the ISPI 2018 Annual Conference, attendees will be able to fully experience the culmination of ISPI’s LEAP Year. The conference theme is “Meaningful Work by Design,” focusing on the application of design thinking to performance improvement, and how to create and sustain meaning at work. This is a way of expanding our thinking about the practice of performance improvement, and achieving extraordinary results for the people, departments, and organizations we work with. The 2018 CFP saw a record number of 137 submitted proposals, and the Committee is working to finalize speakers so sessions can be announced as soon as possible. Additionally, a keynote speaker and several Master’s Series presenters have been identified, and we expect those to be finalized and announced in early 2018.

    In early 2018, ISPI finalized the location, dates, and keynote for the 2019 Annual Conference.