In a society where "there's an app for that" is synonymous with quick problem-solving, who wants to read a book or take a class to learn something new when a simple keyword search or a dedicated application will do? This desire for self-directed, highly accessible and instantly applicable information is a defining characteristic of our convenience culture and it doesn't just vanish when we go to work. For most trainees (particularly millennials) this is an expectation -- and it means that we must embrace opportunities to replace old-school training content with new-era performance support tools.
Turns out there may be a truly useful -- if not urgent -- purpose to having members of Congress take turns reading the U.S. Constitution. And party affiliation has nothing to do with it. According to the latest survey from the Intercollegiate Studies Institute, elected officials in the United States actually understand less about the U.S. Constitution than average Americans -- who don't exactly qualify as Constitutional scholars to begin with. (Test yourself: Take the Mindflash Constitution course.)
Because the U.S. labor market remains stuck in slow-growth mode, the job training sector continues to enjoy a surge -- not just for the legions of unemployed workers but also underemployed folks looking to make career changes that hold brighter long-term prospects. One major focal point of this trend: community colleges around the nation, which are struggling to keep pace with demand for job-training courses and expand training facilities. According to the Des Moines Register, nationwide community college enrollment has spiked 17 percent in the last year, a record high.
Recently I read through a discussion on the Chief Learning Officers Network that caught my eye: "Should L&D report to HR or operations?" As a learning professional, I have reported directly to both operations and HR, and I definitely have a strong opinion about where the learning department should report. However, when it comes right down to it, what matters most is the culture of the organization.
Have you ever wished for a way to navigate a Website, live inside your training presentation, without having to leave PowerPoint and open up a Web browser? Have you ever struggled to give your trainees a clear, detailed rendering of a large diagram or a form in PowerPoint -- only to resort to cropping the image and spreading it across multiple slides? How many times have you shown up to lead a training workshop only to discover that you left your thumbdrive at home and don't have the supporting files or exhibits you need?
With the economy still stuck in slow-growth mode, many job-seekers are scrambling to add new and improved skills to their resumes. In the tech sector, in fact, employers are dealing with a labor shortage that job hunters can target, if they know where to start. Here are some of the most in-demand tech skills -- and some details about the training required to attain them -- that top the list:
What's the most sure-fire way to ensure people do not learn anything from a training program? Easy. Send an email announcement with a "MANDATORY TRAINING Next Week" subject line.
Whenever I feel like my training efforts will never scratch the surface of the real problems, or that I'll never make headway with a project stakeholder, win over that difficult SME, or build trust with an audience full of skeptics, I find that a little perspective goes a long way in helping to renew my focus and energize my thinking.
The verifiability and practicality of IQ tests is hotly debated in academic and popular circles: Does it really measure intelligence? Is it racist, sexist, and/or ageist? What kinds of people benefit from them? What's a modern-day genius, anyway?