Read more Sophie Acomat
KPMG Learning Academy
The Weakest Link
This is the second of three articles on
"Our current training has been unsuccessful.
Our employees all passed the quiz but very
few have adopted the required measures."
"I stared blankly at the Power Point. Main title
read 'Cyber security'. Underneath, bullet
points, learning objectives, dos and don'ts,
Immediately, an image springs to mind.
Employees staring vacantly at a screen,
clicking next and answering multiple-choice
questions. Disengaged, disinterested and
slightly resentful. How many times had I
received a policy about cyber security and 'its
impact on the organisation' and ticked the
boxes without reading it? How many cyber
security tutorials had I sat through myself,
without properly applying what I had learned?
Why? Because it didn't matter to me. It wasn't
relevant and therefore was forgettable. Why
should I care about cyber security? And if I
didn't care, why should this organisation's
employee behave any differently? A client
asked: "Is there another way to raise
employees' awareness of cyber security?" Is
But how can we enrapture the learner with
The ability to create a story that is truly relevant
to the individual, one that correlates closely to
the depth and breadth of experience (hence
stories), can be extracted from subject matter
experts (SMEs) by the instructional designer.
Here, we have an abundance of SMEs with
considerable knowledge and experience, who
provide us with outstanding stories.
The next day, we met with our SME - a senior
technology professional, with over 25 years of
cyber and information security expertise and
former Head of Cyber & Space within the Civil
Service. A cyber guru. Our first and only
question to him was: "Why should employees
care about cyber security?"
We got our answer… via the most vivid
experience we could hope for: "Because they
are the weakest link to a company's cyber
defences. Let's explore why."
He asked the team whether or not we had any
online social presence. Nearly all replied: "Yes,
of course". Except for Terry, one of our
developers, who, amazingly, didn't. And for
So, our SME took us on a journey, starting with
Jill, a relatively new member of the team.