Blog

Work & Learning Convergence: On a Collision Course

Competency. Urgency to perform flawlessly. Business risk. Sustainability. Pick whichever one of these strikes your fancy, but they all speak to what we hope effective training will deliver – avoid – and/or create in our workforce – meaningful and legitimate outcomes all. Unfortunately, we cannot realize these outcomes from the classroom or because of on-line training; rather, they manifest downstream from our training efforts - in the work context. Are we spending our time, resources, and energy in the right place? I am not convinced we are, and as a…

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Work Context: The New Classroom

After 22 years in the telecom industry, all but four of them with AT&T and Sprint, I had a very humbling experience. Fifteen of those years were spent living out of a suitcase as a roving sales trainer and then as a manager. My “humbling” may more accurately be described as an epiphany. It was shocking to me because I had convinced myself – after more frequent flyer miles and Marriott points than a human could use – that I had the sales training gig figured out. And I did.…

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Discovery Methodology for a Learning Continuum

The purpose of this document is to provide a guide for accomplishing discovery that defines attributes of a learning environment, in particular, the work context – when and where learning moments of need are manifest. It is essential that these attributes are identified in early planning stages in any project where learning assets are created to ensure design decisions are not negatively impacted by variables within the learner’s work environment. This approach includes three key learning environmental influencers – Space, Media & Systems – each having a cluster of discrete…

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Alignment: Key Component in the Validation Phase of Change Leadership

I recently purchased a new set of tires for my vehicle. The purchase price included some incremental charges for mounting, balancing, valve stems – all the components and automatic installation extras one would expect. I mean really – what good is a new set of tires if not mounted to the rims? Who would drive away without all four tires in perfect balance? Almost as automatic was a four-wheel alignment – a process having less to do with the primary function of a new set of tires and more to…

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Re-Thinking HR-based Training Organizations: A Break from Tradition?

I like the concept of “re-thinking” training organizations based in HR, and I say this from personal work history primarily based in the training space over the last thirty plus years. The blended perspective I have comes from working both inside and outside of HR in training organizations. I found them to have a very different focus. (more…)

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Learning Discovery – The Art of Defining Work Context

Work context? Why not the art of defining knowledge and skill requirements? After all, we are talking about learning here, and training is obviously a part of that, right? Certainly, it is…and that is exactly the point of this writing – training is indeed a part of learning – and in some cases, only a very small part. Josh Bersin of Bersin & Associates referenced in July 2009 on the “The Future of the Business of Learning” webinar that training organizations spend upwards of 80% of their time and resources…

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The False Promise of Training as a Driver of Performance

Certainly, this title may sound like blasphemy to some of us in the training business. On the other hand, it may be even more of a shock to those who depend upon those of us in the training business to drive performance in the organization. Following is a deceptively simple formula that illustrates why a successful training solution may render a false promise of improved performance: (more…)

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LMS Envy: The Love-Hate Relationship with Technology

In a recent dialog on the CLO-Network, we discussed why so many LMS owners were not happy with their systems - that there seemed to be a "disconnect" between what they envisioned they would own after GoLive and what they actually wound up owning. Why is there such a love-hate relationship with LMS (and other) technology? Why does it seem that someone else always has the better system? Truth is, "better" is a relative term. (more…)

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The Art of Training People and Bears Using a Learning Continuum

Have you ever been to the circus and watched a bear ride a bicycle? For this to happen, that bear experienced formal learning and acquired some significant skills training; the very same skills you and I learned in our youth. The bear’s classroom is a hundred-foot diameter circle that doubles as their workspace. Our learner’s “circus ring”, defined by the classroom, is where they demonstrate proficiency either by doing something successfully or by passing a test of one sort or another. If their classroom doubled as their workspace too, our…

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