The Exciting Conclusion: What happens when new employee orientation becomes a game?

A week ago, I wrote about a new and improved orientation program for incoming employees at my organization. The response to that post was unexpected, and amazing. Thank you to everyone who commented on the post or sent me an email or a LinkedIn message to wish me luck with the program and to hear more about how it turned out.

I’m happy to share our experience from our first session in two parts.   Continue reading

A new employee orientation overhaul

“This is going to be very cool. I know I’m not a new employee, but I want to attend!”

I’ve heard a sentence very similar to this, many times, over the past month or so as my team and I have spoken with key leaders across our organization to gather information and completely overhaul our existing new employee orientation.

Following is a brief case study on what we did, why we went in this direction and how we put it all together.   Continue reading

What do feedback and underwear have in common?

underwear

“I feel you’re getting defensive right now.”

Our team has spent the past two months living, breathing and eating this new employee orientation re-design and now you’re telling us that you don’t like it. Darn right I’m defensive!! And I’m not just defensive. I want to take my ball and go home and you all can keep your old, crappy new employee orientation!!

I didn’t say those words, but I certainly thought them.   Continue reading

The case for sticky notes in every training presentation

sticky-notes

I’ve been facilitating a series of 3-day train-the-trainer sessions in Uganda and Zambia over the past two weeks, working with groups of health educators to help them transform their presentation delivery from a traditional, didactic approach to a more learner-centered, interactive delivery.

On the first day, as I facilitated a variety of activities around adult learning theory and engagement strategies, the energy in the room seemed high. I asked participants to take a sticky note and write one word or phrase about how they were feeling after the first day. Responses such as “enjoyable”, “gaining a lot”, “awesome” and “this training is perfect” were submitted to me.

A funny thing happened on the second day. Continue reading

A tool to track 1-on-1 and self-paced training programs

Businesswoman consulting a partner

I began my instructional design career in the classroom, as a GED instructor. Later I moved into corporate training where working with groups of 20, 30, 40, 100, 250 people in a room was the norm. I thrived on the energy in the room. The more people, the merrier!

Several years ago I was asked to take on a project that involved one-on-one instruction. There was no group on whose energy I could feed. There were no opportunities for small or large group discussion… not even opportunities for a pair-share! It made me uncomfortable. In the end, I didn’t do a very good job designing the program.  Recently, I made a discovery. Continue reading

How ruthless can a learning and development professional be?

darth-vader

Happy New Year!

In my last post from 2016 I shared my one-word resolution that I’m hoping can center me as I try to make my work bigger and better in 2017: ruthless. As in: ruthless prioritization.

Over the past few weeks I’ve been asked to design several training programs in which the clients want big things achieved… and they’ve also given very limited time in which to achieve these things. My biggest challenge was to figure out how to deliver what the clients wanted while at the same time ensuring the training programs were what I’d consider to be fundamentally sound.   Continue reading