The 7 Principles of Reinforcement ®

- By Anthonie Wurth

To build an effective reinforcement program, your focus must be on results and participation. You cannot separate them. If you don’t have any participation, your learners drop off after one week, and you won’t get results. And if your program is not focused on results, you don’t get much participation. Learners don’t want to spend time on your program if they think they won’t see any results. It’s as simple as that.


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  • Supporting Results and Participation

    Each of the seven principles supports results or participation. Three principles are needed to build a strong foundation to focus on results:

    1. Master The 3 Phases of Behavior Change.
    2. Close The 5 Reinforcement Gaps.
    3. Create Measurable Behavior Change.

    If your training foundation addresses the phases of behavior change, shores up the gaps that can lead to shortcomings, and identifies the correct measurements to analyze, it is built perfectly to gain results.

    However, results require participation. The next three principles are more focused on engagement, which drives participation:

    1. Provide the Perfect Push and Pull.
    2. Create Friction and Direction.
    3. Follow the Reinforcement Flow.

    These principles help you stay focused on the engagement. Balance the actions and requested reactions from your learners, stimulate their thinking process without losing them, and make your reinforcement program more difficult over time.

    But you are missing one principle:

    1. Place the Learner in the Center.


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Audio book

Professionally recorded and produced, narrated by the author. Listen to the book in the car or at the gym.


15 years

Make use of 15 years Reinforcement experience from all over the world.


Assessment tools

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Reinforcement program

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  • The problem with training is that when the learner gets back to work, people are waiting for them! Soon they’re too busy to apply what they just learned, and the training investment is wasted. By implementing the expert strategies in this highly readable book, you can assure that the knowledge and skills people have learned are put into practice—and make the most of your training dollars.

  • DDI’s Global Leadership Forecast reveals that over 50 percent of the highest quality leadership development occurs on the job—after the classroom concludes. However, executing this type of follow-up to formal learning can be incredibly challenging. The seven principles presented by the authors will help you powerfully reinforce learning and drive your talent and organizational strategies forward.

  • I’m a believer. For the past few years I have transformed from being a client, to a practitioner, and ultimately to an evangelist of the reinforcement principles in this book. I’ve personally researched most of the alternatives players in this industry, and while they are good at reminding and regurgitating, they don’t get reinforcement like the authors do. If you want lasting change, employee and customer satisfaction, and revenue growth, then read and apply the principles in this book.

  • As former CLO at Hilton, I know that reinforcement is needed to transfer learning into applying. The methodology of The 7 Principles of Reinforcement presented by the authors will help you to design an effective reinforcement program that creates lasting behavior change and an impact on your organization. Thanks to the engaging stories, sports examples, and useful tools, this is one of the most readable books on reinforcement I’ve read.

  • We all know the problem with corporate training. After the training the learner gets back to their work, they forget what they’ve been taught, and/or they’re too busy to apply what they just learned. Nothing changes. The training investment is wasted. A reinforcement program based on the methodology presented by the authors in The 7 Principles of Reinforcement solve this Industry problem. I am convinced that this book helps you to create lasting behavior change and create impact in every organization. It is your guarantee to increase productivity, improve communication, and boost the bottom line.

  • I’ve been in many industries as a learning professional, from healthcare, to truck rental, food processing, and now the payments industry. Adult learning comes in a variety of delivery vehicles: elearning, webinars, classroom, how to videos, etc. The key is retention and how to get the intended audience to retain the knowledge gained from their learning experience. I believe the 7 principles discussed in this book is a home run in terms of applying key reinforcement principles to help learners retain critical knowledge they have learned! By incorporating the 7 principles of reinforcement, I know that my intended audience will put what they have learned into practice and to me, that is success!