The Great Training Robbery

13 Pages Posted: 5 Apr 2016 Last revised: 22 Apr 2016

Date Written: April 21, 2016


In 2012 U.S. corporations spent $164.2 billion on training and education. Overwhelming evidence and experience shows, however, that most companies are unable to transfer employee learning into changes in individual and organization behavior or improved financial performance. Put simply, companies are not getting the return they expect on their investment in training and education. By investing in training that is not likely to yield a good return, senior executives and their HR professionals are complicit in what we have come to call the “great training robbery.”

Suggested Citation

Beer, Michael and Finnstrom, Magnus and Schrader, Derek, The Great Training Robbery (April 21, 2016). Harvard Business School Research Paper Series # 16-121, Available at SSRN: or

Michael Beer (Contact Author)

Harvard Business School ( email )

Soldiers Field
Organizational Behavior, Morgan Hall 319
Boston, MA 02163
United States
617-495-6655 (Phone)
617-496-6554 (Fax)

Magnus Finnstrom

TruePoint ( email )

Derek Schrader

TruePoint ( email )

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics