Make a list of what your team does that drives the biggest results. Then make a list of what you plan to do in the future.
From this you can build out your team’s knowledge acquisition plan.
For example, let’s imagine your team writes content to persuade members to take action. You might want to learn the top techniques used by journalists to tell a story, copywriters to persuade people, and nonprofits that solicit donations via their written material. You might also want to learn how to rank highly for relevant search terms.
This is all knowledge you can get from experts in each field.
Now imagine your team is about to do something they haven’t done before (e.g. run a conference). You want to learn what you need to know. You also want to know how to negotiate the best deals, deal with union labor, avoid being charged for wifi installation (believe me), find reliable suppliers, how to generate immediate interest, attract bulk-purchases, comply with local laws, and stay on time (harder than it seems).
Now seek out the experts and experiences that will ensure your team acquires exactly this knowledge. Look for conferences that tackle these challenges instead of generic themes. Find training courses that cover these issues. Pay experts a few thousand dollars to mentor your team for a day or two. This kind of knowledge is exactly what’s going to move the needle for you.
Too often we give team members a training budget and tell them to spend it. That’s a dumb idea. Far better to identify what drives results now and what you plan to do in the future and ruthlessly pursue the best knowledge for both.