“Best day of my life!”

Best Day

Tomorrow I’ll take my children to a coffee shop in front of their school where we’ll enjoy “Tully’s Friday.” Each Friday we leave the house a little early and we’ll go to Tully’s and order pastries and look up questions to some of life’s most difficult problems (recent examples include: what do you do if you work in a crane and need to go to the bathroom; why can’t we just throw all of Earth’s trash into a volcano) using Google and YouTube.

On these Friday morning outings, we also tend to run into a gentlemen who serves as an usher at church on Sunday mornings. The first time we ran into him, I asked how he was doing and he responded: “Best day of my life!”

A few weeks ago we ran into him again and I asked how he was doing and again he replied: “Best day of my life!”

As I reflected on this later, it got me wondering: at the end of a full day training program, how many of our training participants would respond: “Best day of my life”?   Continue reading

A Word Cloud from 147 L&D Professionals’ 6-word Memoirs

Word Cloud - Blog Post

Above: This blog post as a word cloud

Last week I was having coffee with TD magazine editor Alex Moore and I was telling him about the 6-word memoir post I had published in February. He suggested it might be fun to see what everyone’s 6-word memoirs might look in a more visual format, like a word cloud.

I loved that idea!

The post itself featured 6-word memoirs from 25 L&D professionals and there were a dozen or so comments with additional memoirs. I also posted this particular blog in the ATD LinkedIn discussion forum where more than 100 other L&D professionals added their own brief memoirs.

Here’s the word cloud (I created it in the shape of an apple since we’re all teachers in one way, shape or form):   Continue reading

Finding Instructional Design Inspiration and Creativity from Unlikely Places

Inspiration

Walking through a lava field in Hawaii a few years ago, I turned to my wife and told her that this was such an inspirational experience… I was getting all sorts of ideas of how to connect this amazing hike with my learning and development projects. She shook her head and told me I had a one track mind.

Are some people naturally more creative than others? Perhaps. But I think like most other things, creativity is a skill set that can be developed over time for anyone who is interested in making their training programs more interesting, engaging, fun, unique and memorable.

If you’re truly interested in building your creative muscle, here are five exercises that might help.

1. Stop and look around. Seriously, stop whatever it is that you’re doing right now Continue reading

Want to be creative in your next presentation? Try Pecha Kucha-style!

Pecha Kucha-style presentations involve 20 slides that advance every 20 seconds (automatically). There’s no chance for a presenter to dilly dally. It’s fast-paced, visual, and the best ones capture the audience’s attention.

I wrote about Pecha Kucha-style presentations in the past, but when looking over the agenda for an upcoming retreat for a client recently, I noticed they had Pecha Kucha presentations on the agenda! It’s reignited my interest in the style.

Are you looking to do something a little different with your next presentation? Here are a few Pecha Kucha presentations that can offer some inspiration…   Continue reading

8 training-related resources that might help with your next presentation

Antioch - Explaining Slide

Earlier this month I had an opportunity to co-facilitate a webinar in the Early Childhood Investigations webinar series. During the session, I mentioned several resources that presenters may find handy as they prepare for their next presentation.

Every time I mentioned one of these resources, participants would send a chat asking for a link to the resource. My colleague, Tim Waxenfelter, set up a page with links to each of these resources.

If you’re interested in any of these resources, here is a little more information about each one:   Continue reading

An elearning and in-person facilitation lesson from my interaction with a drug dealer

Drug-free Zone

“Come back here after the sun goes down and we’ll see how brave you are then.”

I’m pretty sure that was the first and only time someone’s made a sincere threat on my life. As I reflect on the mistake I made that led to the above quote, I think that L&D professionals make the same mistake in their instructional design and facilitation every day.   Continue reading

A (free!!) form to investigate the effectiveness of your presentation design

Investigate

Last week I had an opportunity to co-facilitate a webinar for the Early Childhood Investigations webinar series. The focus, of course, was on presentation design.

One of the key points I made, late in the webinar, was how to increase the likelihood that your learners will transfer what they learn from your presentation into their own work flow when they return home. A key piece to this transfer is finding a way to engage your learners’ supervisors.

What are we, as presenters, to do when we don’t have access to the learners’ supervisors?   Continue reading