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Archive for the ‘Future Learning’ Category

Using the right tools at the right time for the right purpose with the right goal

June 11th, 2013 Martin Raske No comments

According to a recent McKinsey report on social business, each major industry has the ability to improve its margins between 60-100% by leveraging social technologies. Those improvements are based on a fundamental change in the way people work, feel about their work and collaborate.

I do not know if the numbers are right - to be honest, I doubt they are - but I am convinced that our way of communicating within and outside of our companies is about to change dramatically. While a lot of us still think that E-Mail is the best way to communicate anything, many have started to realize that you are much more efficient to not use the same communication channel for everything but rahter explore the whole bandwidth of options, depending on the message, on the target group, on the time zones, etc.

Get to know the 7 habits of highly effective social leaders by Daniel Kraft is President and CEO of NewsGator Technologies :

Social Learning - Playing Guinea Pig

July 13th, 2012 Martin Raske No comments

Recently I started a self-motivated experiment. As I am about to implement what I call "Learning Experience" - and what in fact is a huge change initiative to change the company's learning culture - I thought I should grab the chance that Jane Hart (see my blogroll) gave me and attend a two-week workshop on her "Social Learning Centre". The workshop is run by Harold Jarche and the title is "From Training to Performance to Social".

The concpet of this workshop: "In this workshop there are 6 (web-based) assignments (3 each week)  that provide an introduction to the topic with links to additional reading (if desired), as well as individual activities and a group discussion. "

Attending this workshop was very inspiring and I took away 4 main learnings:

  • Stick to the simplest instructional design you can think of. Participants have to read blog entries of the facilitator's blog and comment on his ideas and inputs. They can - if they want - share their own ideas too, which is called 'narrating' their own experience. That's it.
  • Do not bother to define learning goals. When I asked Harold, our facilitator, about the learning goals and the instructional idea behind the chosen approach, he pointed me to the marketing slide where it says "In this workshop there are 6 (web-based) assignments (3 each week)  that provide an introduction to the topic with links to additional reading (if desired), as well as individual activities and a group discussion." This is not a learning goal, it is the concept and that should suffice.
  • Do not get engaged in discussions with your participants. When I asked the question about the goals in the group - and if we could discuss and share our ideas and motivation to attend this workshop - I was told off in public by both Jane, the owner of the platform, and Harold, the facilitator of this workshop. They reminded me to just read the input and stick to the assignments.
  • No social skills required in a virtual environment. Because I felt bad, having been told off in public, I wrote a private message to Jane Hart, asking her why she reacted like this. Her answer was: "We try to address all learner needs but this is a simple, and very cheap workshop based on a model that tries to encourage written participation."

This approach seems to be very successful, as Harold points out in this article:

Categories: Future Learning, My thoughts, Web 2.0 Tags:

Wissenswert Blog Carnival - How do you implement Workplace Learning?

November 11th, 2010 Martin Raske No comments

Training organizations have realized, that they start loosing their monopoly on learning. Employees do dare to organize themselves. More than 90% of what you need in your  current job was not learned by formalized learning interventions but in informal learning situation, such as learning on the job, discussions with peers or mentors, etc. etc.  That's the answer you usually get if you ask the question. This situation frightens training organizations - but it shouldn't.

The new world of learning is based on a new mindset - sharing instead of hiding, collaborating instead of instructing, acting instead of reacting. Technology enables us to support learning processes in companies at the workplace. Today it is more crucial than ever to stay up to date. Life long learning - it's not by chance the title of this blog - is an integral part of our lifes. Not too long ago, training organizations did nothing else than deliver training content. These days one of the most important tasks is to facilitate learning at the workplace. Probably the biggest difference between the two models is the fact that modern training organizations today need to provide platforms and options - not just solutions. They have to make sure that employees are able to intaract with each other. That they are able to collaborate and share their knwoledge. It's no longer key to collect know-how within the training organization and spread it from there. It's more important to tap into the existing know-how of the organization.

Learning at the Workplace is fundamentally different than learnign in classrooms. Time is scarce. Distraction lurks behind every incoming e-mail. But: The problems are pressing. The need for an answer is immediate and often cannot wait. And: The situation is such that it optimally supports learning processes - if we find a solution to a problem and apply it, we tend to remember it much better than if we discuss it in a classroom session and are not able to apply it straight away. Because it is fundamentally different, learning organizations have to re-think the way they deliver formalized learning content as well. Also this content needs to be presented in short chunks. The Learning Nuggets format - as mentionned in one of my previous posts - is a very good example of Workplace Learning.

One of the next challenges we will be facing is to re-define the workplace. Worklpace and working time will be moving away from the actual premises of the company. Employees will be online whenever and whereever they are. Thus the workplace will be mobile and so will be workplace learning.

What do I do to support these changes? I am convinced that the first step to help the organization to start moving into the direction described above is to start talking about the changes. I run several workshops on this topic to show people of all hierarchical levels the changes that are looming ahead and raise their awareness for it. We have also started to provide much shorter self-paced training material: Our Learning Nugget concept is a great success. This year we will also start - against all odds - to run a Mobile Learning pilot on all major mobile platforms such as Blackberry, iPhone, Windows Mobile, Android. There is a pilot going on as well, where a whole new concept of how to build office space is tested - a much more flexible environment that leverages new technologies and new work-life-balance models. The combination of this with new ways of delivering/supporting training will be tremendously exciting.

Life Long Learning - in chunks of just a few minutes

October 3rd, 2010 Martin Raske No comments

The latest trend, which seems to create a lot of interest, are so called "Learning Nuggets". This piece of learning/information or information/learning is no longer than 5 minutes and consists of either an interactive learning program or just a little motivating movie.

When we started to produce and use these Learning Nuggets, I was very sceptical. How can one learn something in the span of just 5 minutes? Take learning a language, for example. You can hardly learn a single word in just five minutes. But then I realized that the potential of short pieces of learning lay in the chance to reach people and raise their interest in potentially interesting topics. It's like a marketing campaign for learning, tailored for a time where time is scarce. If we can wrap one single grain of potentially interesting information into a motivating short piece of learning software, we might have a greater reach than if we produced hours of designed learning material on this specific subject. Todays learners are used to learning at their own pace. They are used to get the information they need. What they might be lacking is the overview of what's out there. Something that grabs their attention. Once they find something, that interests them, they are willing to spend more time on the subject - the dream of every teaching professional.

The reality proves the theory to be right. Since we had launched the Learning Nuggets, people like them and our records also show that they spend more time on the topics we propose.

Please refer also to the little interview I gave about this topic (in German) :

And I am proud to present: Management in a Nutshell - open for the public:

Social Media - Changing the way we work

September 3rd, 2010 Martin Raske No comments

The discussion is not brand-new, but the discussion seems to accelerate in the corporate world: How do we deal with the fact that more and more people start using Social Media in- and outside the work context? What does this change mean for us as professionals, what does it mean for a company?

In my opinion especially training professionals are challenged: They have to somehow leverage the gap between the generations - however you want to define them (I don't by age but by mind-set). Here the 'digital-savvy' there the 'digital dinosaur', both in the same training session, prepared to learn relevant content or behaviour for their job. Even though training professionals always knew that people learn differently, I think the change that happens at the moment is an important one. It is probably not enough just to integrate Youtube Videos into a traditional training setting to be up to date.

These and other topics were touched upon at the following workshop: