Accessing the file

The template is in a Word template format (.dotx). Template files, as opposed to document (.doc or .docx) files, are not easily overwritten. When opening, they will create a new document file that must be saved under a new file name. This prevents overwriting of the original template.

The file is hosted behind a login on SharePoint, so you must be a member of the University of Tennessee community to access it. See access login guidance here, if you have any questions.

Download Lessons Learned Template

Template Use

The template is simple and should be self guiding, but there are important considerations

  • Remember this is a learning tool. Keep it simple, accessible, and useful.
  • The content should be redacted. This is not an incident report. Tell enough of the story to convey the context and meaning, but exclude names or identifiers.
  • Include an image if feasible. Images make incidents real.
  • Use past tense language.

Template Sections

What Happened?

  • Provide context and conditions.
  • Describes the events leading up to, during, and after the event.
  • What went wrong?

What went right?

  • Not all aspects of an incident are bad.
  • Recognize where controls and/or mitigation played a part.

What should have been done differently?

  • Summarize what should have occurred.
  • These should be matched to any “What went wrong?” items.

How can incidents like this be prevented?

Summarize the lessons learned with a short list of preventative measures.

Contact Information

Provide sufficient information to contact the creator of the document.