Apr 25

Where do we go from here?

A while ago a colleague asked about where I thought L&D was going and how I was preparing for it. Here is my slightly edited response:

I love doing live mult-iday LILT (Live Instructor-Led Training). But I think that model is waning. Shorter attention spans, changes in P-16 schooling and a leaner workforce will likely make longer classes less and less popular outside of some limited uses (e.g. onboarding, perhaps, where multi-week programs are not unusual). I see shorter, more focused online VILT (Virtual Instructor Led Training) or other elearning events along with coaching and mentoring becoming more popular. Agile or similar — or maybe even leaner — tools will likely be used to develop those learning activities. Continue reading

Apr 05

Un M.A.S.K.ing my new backpack

A few months ago I got a new laptop. It’s a 17 inch Dell and I wanted an airport security-friendly backback bag for it. I got one and it was not very sturdy so I searched for a replacement. It seems security-friendly (open up completely for the TSA airport X-ray) bags for 17-inch laptops are not plentiful. On a whim I searched for “custom laptop backpack” and found the SLAPPA M.A.S.K. line of customizable laptop backpacks. I ordered and received a KOOP model and thought I’d share some pictures and comments.I carry a lot of stuff when I travel so I needed a backpack that would let me put all my stuff in it and still keep it organized.

Before I go any further, I need to say that a) I paid for this backpack, b) I’m not getting paid for the review, and c) all the photos here are mine, taken with my Samsung Galaxy SIII. Click through to see the photos and review. Continue reading

Jan 27

It’s all eLearning

There has been a lot of discussion recently about informal learning and social learning and [insert some other buzzword] learning. In their 2012 State of the Industry Report ASTD noted a rise in learning using “technology-based methods”. That got me thinking, “what might that include”?

Surely it includes synchronous eLearning (VILT) and asynchronous eLearning. The range of the latter is enormous. When most of us hear “eLearning” we thing of some computer-assisted instruction. There are probably sections of slides or images with text and “Next” and “Previous” buttons. There may be audio narration and there are probably quizzes and games to “involve” the learner.

Isn’t contributing to a discussion on LinkedIn a form of eLearning? We cannot debate the “e” part, but some might question the “learning”. Sure some discussions have little learning value, but is that different from those held in a classroom on on a college campus or even in the off-campus pub or coffee shop? And contributers have the web handy and can (but not necessarily will) research their points before making them. Yes, one may have to do a lot of sifting, but this is informal eLearning. Continue reading

Jan 02

Electronics and social media in the training room

A colleague asked about using social media in “training”. She said that at her company there was some resistance to learners using electronics in the classroom.
I am not sure the domain in which she working. I work in a mostly technical domain. There we have been using Wikis and other social tools for many years for documentation, making it easier for geographically dispersed teams work more closely and to increase interaction among and between teams who are not sitting within a few feet of each other.
I encourage the use of electronics in my training room, if they are used to deal directly with the content. I wish more people would take notes electronically — then they are searchable and not tossed in a binder or file. I wish people in the same company who take the same class would collaborate on social media about the content (I usually have participants from many organizations in the same event). If they do that, they all learn more. Continue reading

Dec 28

I am speaking at ICE!

I am so excited! I will be speaking at ASTD’s 2013 International Conference and Exposition in Dallas on Wed. May. 22 from 8:00 am – 9:15 am. This is my first time speaking at the conference, so of course I’m excited. When I applied my friends and colleagues told me there were so many applicants, it would be unlikely for my proposal to be accepted, but it clearly was. I decided to talk about something that I think is critical in communication:

Continue reading