The modern learning landscape presents a unique set of challenges. Never before have learners had greater access to information, a greater drive to discover answers for themselves, or a greater number of demands on their time.
Formal training no longer provides the end-all-be-all solution for our organizations. While it has an important place in the instructional design line-up, it represents just one of many options we need to include in our blends.
By better understanding our audience, identifying a training solution, and transitioning to something new and innovative, we can improve the learning experience within our organizations.
Blended Learning Campaigns,
Self-Paced Learning Campaigns
In honor of International Women’s Day, InSync team members shared insights about working for a WBENC-certified Women’s Business Enterprise.
From Jennifer Hofmann, Founder & President
Over the years, InSync has grown to have more than 75 team members. And right now, more than 65 of them are women.
We didn’t start out to build a team of mostly women, that’s the way it turned out.
It turns out, InSync especially appeals to women. They tell me that they like the flexibility of being able to create literally their own schedules. Some work during the day, some work very early morning, and some work overnight. This gives them the flexibility to take care of other things in their lives like children or parents.
It also provides the opportunity to work at home while maintaining a professional resume. The women especially appreciate the ability to identify ways to take care of everything they need in their lives.
In the live online learning environment, instructional teams often struggle to truly connect with learners. We don't have the benefit of greeting our online learners with a smile as they enter our virtual space. So how do we create an inviting, warm, inclusive learning environment? From experience, it really comes down to our tone of voice and our words.
As virtual facilitators and producers, we have to be cognizant of our tone and our words. Our words are often the only part of us that our learners experience. When preparing for a session, ask yourself, “How empathetic and open am I to really hearing what participants have to say?” “Do my learners tune out because my tone of voice seems disinterested or unyielding?” If you answered “yes” to either question, make a conscious effort to inject warmth and authenticity into your voice. It’s a small step that makes a big difference.
Virtual Classroom - Production,
BYTE session recap
As we all know, visual learning aids are wildly popular. Learners respond to, and remember, colorful images related to the content being presented. Infographics in particular have gained popularity in learning programs in the past few years. Karin Rex, a nationally known facilitator specializing in soft and technical skills, recently joined our BYTE presenter ranks with her wildly popular session, Harnessing the Power of Infographics as Teaching Tools.
Referencing this BYTE content, this blog post defines infographics, highlights how they can help us learn, and the five composition elements you need to include in successful infographics for the purpose of learning.
To review all of the examples, recommendations, and guiding principles Karin shared during her BYTE event, access the recording here.
Infographics and Tools,
BYTE Session Recap
Today’s workforce is learning in new ways, and it’s deeply impacting the way Learning and Development professionals need to approach training. Not only do we need to design effective traditional learning programs, but we also need to provide structure to the informal learning taking place on a daily basis in our organizations.
Recently, Sarah Danzl, Director of Enterprise Marketing and Communications at Degreed, provided a timely recommendation for managing this changing landscape. In her expert opinion, when done correctly, content curation can create this much-needed support to informal learning opportunities.
As we navigate designing, producing and facilitating virtual classroom and blended learning, we identify solutions to common challenges. To support the mobile, social, and modern virtual classroom, we share our findings and lessons learned with our audience to encourage the creation of training that sticks.
For example, as anyone who has taught or participated in a virtual learning environment knows, audio plays a key role in a program’s success. Audio connectivity issues can quickly derail a session, making effective planning essential. How should you encourage learners to connect to audio? As virtual learning architects, how should you think about audio in relationship to the overall learning experience?
Virtual Classroom - Best Practices,
BYTE session recap
Jennifer Hofmann, President of InSync Training and Malte Bong-Schmidt, Virtual Learning Lead, Global Customer Operations & Strategy for SAP, recently spoke with BYTE session attendees about a virtual and blended learning initiative they worked on together. Malte gave an overview of challenges SAP faced when implementing the new program, lessons learned over the past few years, and SAP’s vision for the future of blended learning in his organization. Jennifer contributed her years of expertise and insight as Malte discussed SAP’s transition.
This post will provide highlights from the session, including background on SAP and the evolution of their learning initiative. To review the presentation in its entirety, click here.
BYTE session recap - Talk to the Elephant: Design for Behavior Change
While people know the right things to do, many aren’t doing them. Why? On June 14th, Julie Dirksen, creator of Usable Learning, shared her perspective and theories about this commonplace quandary. Using the metaphor, “Your brain is like a rider with an elephant,” from the book, The Happiness Hypothesis, by Jonathan Haidt, Julie explained the reasons behind common behavior change challenges.
This post will discuss how behavior change works, with a focus on the importance of motivation, and how it can help your instructional design process. To review Julie’s full presentation, click here.