Are You Using a Training Design Zoom Lens?

The lens through which we examine information can either help or hinder our ability to make good design decisions. Zoom in too close, and you may get overwhelmed or lose sight of the business strategies that training is supposed to support. Zoom out too far, and you may miss the warning signs of a changing environment that requires trainees to learn new skills or knowledge.

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Training Lessons from Seinfeld: Lesson #3 – Do the Opposite

It’s easy to get stuck in a design rut whenever there’s too much to do and not enough time to do it. Re-using and re-purposing design elements that have served you well in the past is one great way to enhance your efficiency, but over time, it can lead to a course library that lacks visual identity or personality. When your 20th course starts to look and feel like a carbon copy of your first course, it may be time to stop what you’re doing and apply George Costanza’s “do the opposite” theory.

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Not Measuring ROI for Training? Then Don’t Bother With the Investment

Although many learning professionals talk about the importance of conducting return on investment (ROI) analysis of training programs, few actually do it. Many reasons are given for not conducting this level of analysis. One reason is that time and resources are limited and learning professionals have many other programs to deliver. Fair enough. However, the question

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How to Transform Old Training Content into New Performance Support Tools

Our society has a ravenous appetite for just-in-time information. In the world of “there’s an app for that,” we don’t want to read a book or take a class to learn things when a simple keyword search will do. And this desire for self-directed, easy access to information doesn’t just vanish when we go to work. For most trainees (particularly the millenials) this is an expectation of the modern workplace – and it means that trainers must embrace opportunities to re-imagine old-school content into new-era performance support tools. But when you’re staring down a catalog of old school classroom training content, where do you start?

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A 3-Part Tech Cocktail For Trouble-Free Training

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 images and spreading them 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 you don’t have the latest version of the files you need?

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How to Win Over Tough SMEs

From time to time, we’ve all had to tap into our inner Perry Mason to convince a tough Subject Matter Expert (SME) to let us try something new. Many of us can attest to the challenges of working with skeptical, change-resistant, know-it-all, or overly-involved SMEs. And in many cases, these pesky SMEs are the very people whose strangle-hold over training content has perpetuated the very problems intended to be addressed by training! Of course, most SMEs aren’t out to annoy you. Some simply feel they have a better grasp of the brand, the product, the “real” problem, or the needs of the target audience. And, while it’s part of our job as trainers to listen to our SME’s input and allow their ideas to inform our designs, it’s also our obligation to act as a voice of reason, a content filter, and a designer.

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How to Plead the Business Case With E-Learning Skeptics

Many organizations are considering implementing e-learning projects, but there are always stakeholders who are tough to convince. They have certain objections to e-learning, which makes trainers’ jobs more difficult. You know e-learning is the way to go, but how to do you persuade these stakeholders that it needs to happen?  Here are some tactics to

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5 Ways to Stretch Your Training Budget

Despite ample evidence supporting the bottom-line value of ongoing training and professional development in employee recruitment and retention, training budgets are almost always the first place business leaders slash spending. For those of us who are left to do more with less this can mean working towards smarter, more scalable, longer-term training solutions. In this post, I’ve got a few ideas to consider to stretch your training budget and help you set your training team on the path to long-term success.

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