Preparing for the Great American Eclipse

Eclipse2

For some, August 21, 2017 is a big day. Many people have spent months preparing for the events of today. Today is first day in 38 years that the moon will completely block the sun from the view in many United States cities as well as partially block the sun in the majority of the rest of the states.

How we prepare for major events influence our experiences. Many people maybe simply aware of the celestial event occurring today, caring little more than to wander outside and check it out if prompted. More dedicated individuals have been planning vacations to be in a location that celebrates a full eclipse; they know the location of the totality, possess correct eyewear, and have researched total eclipse facts, i.e. it can only happen during a new moon, to get the most out of their experience. I am somewhere in between. I live in a place where we will see 93% coverage around 10:30 AM, and all of the news surrounding the eclipse has me moderately interested. Continue reading

On diversity training, the Google Bro and just being a good person at the office.

Diversity Day

If you don’t want a more equitable and inclusive work environment, you’re not a good person. Period. Full stop.

Can we train our way out of a labor system that has a history of putting certain groups ahead of others, a history that spans from the very beginning of this country with slavery until present day when women make 82 cents for every dollar that a man makes and when combined, African Americans and Hispanics make up only 9% of the workforce in the top 75 tech companies in Silicon Valley (though they make up 31% of the overall US population)?   Continue reading

Case Study: How One Practitioner Got Training to Stick

Question

A few weeks ago I was exchanging messages via LinkedIn with someone who had reached out to connect with me. As she began sharing more about her work, it was obvious she had a story to tell. Following is a guest post from Betty Dannewitz, who generously offered to share her experiences with the Train Like a Champion community. Be sure to share your thoughts about this case study with her in the comment section.

We know how the story goes.

Step 1: Trainee hears about a great class.

Step 2: Trainee shows up ready to learn.

Step 3: Trainee loves class and soaks up all the knowledge like a sponge.

Step 4: Trainee leaves class excited and energized.

Step 5: After class, all content falls out of trainee’s head.

Step 6: Trainee does nothing with the new skill set.

Step 7: Cycle repeats.   Continue reading

The Best Things in Life Are Free

Price and quality are not always directly proportional. Don’t worry, this is not going to be a basic economics lesson, but we are going to talk about finances. You don’t always have to spend a lot of money on software to put out great training. With all of the software options out there, it can be difficult to pick the right one without spending hours testing and reviewing. At Endurance Learning, we use a lot of software to create our training. Let’s talk about a few of the fantastic free or low-price tools we find useful throughout the life-cycle of our training. Continue reading

Something about old dogs and new tricks

Old Dogs New Tricks

At the beginning of June, I led a train the trainer program with a customer.

The other day, this customer sent a note that included these comments:

Brian and Tim, without question, completely changed our paradigm with their How Adults Learn training. These are the most critically important principles that I’ve learned in my 25 years of teaching, training, and developing leaders. Additionally, their instructions on how to facilitate training as opposed to delivering information was one of the greatest “Aha!” moments of my professional life.

It was high praise, and it got me wondering. I’ve spent much of my adult life developing habits and ways of doing things… when was the last time I chose to change any of those habits, especially in my professional life? How about you?  Continue reading

How many words is it worth?

Long before a group of people gather in a room or online to take a training, the training design process begins. At some point during that process, an idea of what that training will eventually look like is generated and subsequently explained.

The creative process varies; both by person and by project. Various tools help designers and developers work to get to the final stages of training. One process I like to do during the training development process is storyboarding. A storyboard is basically a few frames of images, usually with some text, that graphically represent a sequence. In the context of Instructional Design, it is the sequence of your training. I think of it like a lesson plan comic strip.   Continue reading

Hmmmm… What to measure?

I was scrolling through my Facebook feed last week and shrieked in horror when I noticed that a friend of mine was spreading this nonsense:

Nonprofit Overhead

I understand that sharing things like this comes from a good place, but just because things have numbers in them doesn’t mean those numbers mean anything. In this particular case, these numbers are simply made up (don’t get me started on the topic of “overhead” and nonprofit funding). In many other cases, especially in the world of learning and development, the numbers may not be made up, but they need to be combined with a few more data points to be useful.

Let’s take a big one, ripped straight from ATD’s 2016 State of the Industry Report: Employees averaged 33.5 hours of training. Continue reading