Getting Started with Photoshop Hacks

Written by: Heather Snyder

Adobe Photoshop is a massive program with a lot of great tools and features. Learning the full capacity of Photoshop takes a great deal of time, which can be intimidating. Many of us who are unfamiliar with Photoshop turn to PowerPoint for graphic design, which is a great choice, albeit not as powerful.

The internet is full of instructions to make Photoshop more accessible to causal users. That, too, can be overwhelming unless you know exactly what you are looking for. I have had the opportunity to work with many talented graphic artists who have helped me distill the information I need to get the power I want out of Photoshop when I am designing training. Let’s take a look at a few of the tips and hacks I have picked up over the years.   Continue reading

Want your learners to feel like they hit the lottery? You’ve got to trust them.

Lottery Winner

Written by: Brian Washburn

Over the past few years, I’ve been facilitating fewer training programs myself and I’ve been designing a lot more training lesson plans for other people to deliver. For many of my clients, the learner-centered design style that I incorporate into each lesson plan makes them feel uncomfortable.

One of my favorite clients always uses the metaphor of correcting a golf swing as a way to describe what his staff seems to be going through. When you adjust your golf swing, it’s initially uncomfortable. It feels funny. Your game may even get worse for the first few weeks. In the end, however, your game can improve exponentially… if you don’t revert back to old habits and your old swing.   Continue reading

Hmmm. Maybe it is actually a training problem.

Riding a Bike

Written by: Heather Snyder

Like many parents before me, I have spent several hours running next to my daughter shouting words of encouragement as I try to teach her to ride a bike. We have spent a lot of time preparing for this goal. We have practiced on tricycles, strider bikes, and even training wheels. There are several techniques to teaching a child to ride a bike, as I have learned by scouring the internet for less frustrating ways to train her in this rite of passage.

This summer’s goal is to finally ride on two wheels, although I have forgotten if it is her goal or mine at this point. As we meander up and down my sidewalk, I reach deep into my bag of tricks to say the right words, demonstrate techniques on my own bike, show her the right picture or video on my phone, or have her visualize herself successfully riding to the end of the road.   Continue reading

One presentation can change the world. Here’s proof.

Obama_In_The_Rain

I honestly don’t remember what the occasion was or when he gave his speech, but I remember sitting on my couch, watching Barack Obama talk about ways that American citizens could make a contribution.

It spoke to me because I was looking for a way to make a contribution. At the time I was working for an organization dedicated to eliminating blindness, so I guess that was one small way that I was making the world a better place. I was looking for more. Something I could directly do to make a more significant contribution.

I’ve searched and searched for the exact speech so I wouldn’t misquote him, but apparently he’s given a lot of speeches. I’ll just have to paraphrase the part of his presentation that has had a ripple effect, with the enormity of the changes still to be determined. It’s a lesson that anyone who presents or trains others could borrow from.   Continue reading

“Why do you never see elephants hiding in trees?”

Elephant in a Tree

It’s grilling season in Seattle. Last weekend I was at my sister-in-law’s house for a cookout and over dinner my niece and nephews decided to play a round of: “Who can actually get Uncle Brian to laugh?”

From the sound of this game, I started to get the impression that I don’t laugh enough around them. Then my niece asked: “Why do you never see elephants hiding in trees?”   Continue reading