What’s Missing from ATD ICE?

Searching (Blank Face)

ATD’s annual international conference and expo began yesterday, and I have a feeling it’s missing something (and I’m not necessarily talking about me… although really, what good is a conference without me?).

I’ve been to several ATD conferences and a SHRM Talent Development conference over the past few years and they all seem to be missing something.

The crowds I’ve encountered at the ATD conferences have primarily included instructional designers, training program managers, classroom instructors and some independent consultants. The SHRM conference was primarily HR professionals – business partners, generalists, department heads and consultants.

I imagine it’s similar at major conferences for professionals in coaching or organizational development. On the one hand, it’s to be expected. These conferences, after all, are for specialized segments of the greater human performance field. On the other hand, none of these initiatives can be successful if professionals from across the human performance spectrum don’t have opportunities to cross-pollinate.

Recently, as I got involved in my local ATD chapter, I was given an opportunity to work on an annual program called the Allied Professionals Event, which will take place on June 9th in Seattle. I’m looking forward to it because it is the one night of the year when people from across these specialized areas – learning & development, human resources, coaching and organizational development – can all come together, spend some time networking and discussing what’s on their minds, and then listen to some of the region’s rock star executives in both HR and business operations speak to the impact of human performance initiatives on the people within their organizations.

If you’re in the Seattle area, I’d like to invite you to attend (here is the registration information) and I’d love to hear what you’re working on. If you’re someplace else in this world, I’d love to hear from you – have you found similar opportunities to engage with your counterparts from other areas of the human performance spectrum?

While I know large national conferences are organized for specialized groups that make up their membership, are they completely serving their members’ best interests with such a narrow focus across all conference programming?

What do you think? Agree? Disagree? Let’s hear it in the Comment section.

Know someone who might be interested in this type of initiative, please pass this along!

What I Learn From My Readers When I Blog

This is the 308th blog post that I’ve published, and one of the best part of my blogging experience has been the opportunity to learn from my readers.

Yesterday I received an incredibly nice note from a reader who wrote, in part, that this blog offered her “Such insightful and helpful information.” While I love the opportunity to share my insights in hopes that others may find them helpful, more than anything I love learning from Continue reading

The Mindboggling Power of “Yes” vs. “No”

Change efforts can be difficult. Sometimes you have people who are true believers in the change from the start. Sometimes you have people who will never believe in the change. Often you have people who say they believe in the change, but in their minds and hearts they are thinking “this can’t be done.”

People don’t always appreciate how their (dis)belief in change can impact the effort. In order to illustrate the mindboggling power of the words “yes” and “no”, the  CEO of my organization used an activity to wrap up a two-day meeting revolving around important changes that needed to be made. I’ve done my best to re-create that activity in the following 3-minute video: Continue reading

It’s 5 Minutes Before My Presentation And The Projector Still Isn’t Working…

 

Panic

On Monday, I described a pit-in-the-stomach inducing moment I had prior to a workshop I was scheduled to deliver last week. In case you missed it, here’s the quick summary:

  • I inexplicably designed a presentation that depended a little too much on PowerPoint
  • It included visual aids designed to make a visceral impact on the audience
  • It also included a series of embedded PollEverywhere questions so the entire audience could see where their fellow participants stood on a variety of issues
  • The facility’s entire A/V staff couldn’t get the ceiling-mounted projector to work

What Others Would Have Done Continue reading

What Would You Do If This Happened In Your Training Session?

The clock struck 1:00pm and it was time for my presentation to begin. That’s when the first of four text messages arrived on my phone. All four messages began with the same two words: “Oh no!” My friends and co-workers had heard what was happening in my breakout room and they began to offer their empathy.

As the A/V staff frantically worked on the facility’s new projector system (which worked just fine for the previous presenter), I tried to remain calm and professional on the outside. On the inside, Continue reading

10 Interview Questions that Training Professionals Should Be Ready For

Interview

Whether you’re looking for your next position in facilitating workshops or you’re looking to put a new degree in instructional design to use in the “real world”, here are 10 questions you should be ready for in your next interview. In addition to being prepared to answer these questions, it might also be helpful to know why a hiring manager is asking such questions in the first place. In parentheses, I’ve added the “question(s) behind the question”. Continue reading