InSync Training

Jennifer Hofmann

Jennifer Hofmann
Jennifer Hofmann is the president of InSync Training, LLC, a consulting firm that specializes in the design and delivery of virtual and blended learning. Featured in Forbes Most Powerful Women issue (June 16, 2014) as a New England Women Business Leader, she has led InSync Training to the Inc. 5000 as the 10th Fastest Growing Education Company in the US (2013). Hofmann is a recognized thought leader in the field of synchronous learning. She is the author of The Synchronous Trainer’s Survival Guide: Facilitating Successful Live and Online Courses, Meetings and Events (Pfeiffer, 2003), Live and Online! Tips, Techniques, and Ready-To-Use Activities for the Virtual Classroom (Pfeiffer, 2004), and How To Design For The Live Online Classroom: Creating Great Interactive and Collaborative Training Using Web Conferencing (Brandon Hall, 2005). Additionally, she is a chapter contributor to The Handbook of Blended Learning (Pfeiffer, 2006), The AMA Handbook of E-Learning (The American Management Association, 2003), and The ASTD Handbook for Workplace Learning Professionals (ASTD, 2008). She has most recently co-authored, with Dr. Nanette Miner, Tailored Learning: Designing the Blend That Fits (ASTD, 2009), a book focused on taking advantage of distributed technologies to create the best blended training solution possible.
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Recent Posts

7 Ways Facilitators Can Nurture Emotional Engagement in the Virtual Classroom

Posted by Jennifer Hofmann on Sep 5, 2019 9:00:00 AM

This is the third installment in a three-part series that explores actionable approaches virtual classroom facilitators can use to improve learner engagement through purposeful facilitation.

Heart_Words-1

We often frame corporate training as a compulsory process: complete these requirements and move on to the next task. It's a reinforcement of a "Push" learning culture that is content-centric, and not a personal experience.

Effective learning involves an emotional component. Employees want to do well on the job. They hope to have the skills required to meet their goals. They stress about balancing their professional responsibilities while upskilling. The training function has an obligation to recognize these emotions, and facilitators can improve virtual training experiences by addressing them in their delivery approach.

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Topics: Advanced Facilitation Learner Engagement

5 Ways Facilitators Can Stimulate Intellectual Engagement in the Virtual Classroom

Posted by Jennifer Hofmann on Aug 27, 2019 9:00:00 AM

Intellectual learner engagementThis is the second installment in a three-part series that explores actionable approaches facilitators can use to improve learner engagement through purposeful facilitation.

Can the virtual classroom actually achieve the same learning results as a face-to-face approach? Or is it a ‘second best’ solution?

I believe that, if our approach is authentic and well-designed, facilitators can ensure that virtual learning is REAL learning. And help learners recognize this as well.

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Topics: Virtual Classroom - Facilitation, Advanced Facilitation, Intellectual Engagement, learner engagement, Advanced Facilitation Learner Engagement

8 Ways Facilitators Can Foster Environmental Engagement in the Virtual Classroom

Posted by Jennifer Hofmann on Aug 20, 2019 10:00:00 AM
Environmental Engagement

This is the first installment in a three-part series that explores actionable approaches facilitators can use to improve learner engagement through purposeful facilitation.

If a tree falls in the woods and no one witnesses it, does it make any noise? If an individual hates the virtual classroom, does it have an impact on the success of the program?

Of course it does.  The learning environment and the learner are both changed by contributions from the learner, interactions with the other learners, delivery of content, and interactions with the facilitator. In the case of the virtual classroom, this environmental engagement begins with comfort with the capabilities and requirements of the virtual classroom.

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Topics: Environmental Engagement, learner engagement, Advanced Facilitation Learner Engagement

Are You A Virtual Trainer? How to Engage your Learners at an Advanced Level

Posted by Jennifer Hofmann on Aug 8, 2019 1:48:07 AM

InSync_HiringInfographicCompetent virtual facilitators have quite a few enviable skills.

They’ve been trained on the nuances of how to teach virtually and have mastered their virtual classroom platform. (Zoom, WebEx, Adobe Connect, etc.) They consider the principles of adult learning throughout every delivery. They manage the entire experience. And so much more!

The infographic associated with this post provides a pretty detailed list of the qualifications and responsibilities of a good virtual facilitator, in a “job posting” format. (Download here and feel free to adapt for your own use!)

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Topics: Virtual Classroom - Facilitation, Virtual Classroom - Best Practices, Modern Learning

What’s in a Name? Digital Learning

Posted by Jennifer Hofmann on Jun 18, 2019 10:00:00 AM

digital learning Would it surprise you to learn that, on Wikipedia, the following three phrases are equivalent?

Online Learning --------------> eLearning ------------------> Educational Technology 

I agree that these three terms are often used interchangeably but not always consistently.

Having so many ways of saying the same thing is understandably confusing the people not in the learning and development community. I think it’s also confusing to those of us designing, developing, and delivering content every day.

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Topics: Modern Blended Learning, digital learning

Change the Perceived Paradigm and Prioritize Learning

Posted by Jennifer Hofmann on Jun 11, 2019 10:00:00 AM

109806883_sThis weekend I read an article, How to Work with Adult Learners: What to keep in mind when teaching your peers.

Applying adult learning principles to peer-based interactions is interesting to me, so I thought I'd give it a quick read. The author was speaking to individuals who are preparing for presentations in meeting type settings. It contained typical advice for individuals new to creating presentations:

  • Adults want to know the "why.” 
  • They want their prior knowledge to be respected. Relevance is of the utmost importance. 

Good stuff.

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Topics: Modern Learning Culture, Modern Workplace, Advanced Facilitation

Virtual Classroom Facilitators: Enabling Engagement & Learning

Posted by Jennifer Hofmann on Jun 4, 2019 10:02:24 AM

59906697_sIn the mid-1990s, virtual classrooms (then known as ‘synchronous’ classrooms) were new. (Don’t believe me? Read some history here!) So new, most people had never heard of them.

But the people who HAD heard of virtual training were very excited. Soon, they proclaimed, none of us would ever have to go to a brick and mortar classroom again! All the ingredients were present to disrupt the Training & Development industry: trainers, participants, and PowerPoint slides! What else did we need?

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Topics: Virtual Classroom - Facilitation, Modern Classroom, Advanced Facilitation

5 Reasons to Design Blended Learning Using a Campaign Approach

Posted by Jennifer Hofmann on May 15, 2019 11:32:07 AM

27015517_sWith plenty of new instructional strategies, techniques, and technologies available to us to create modern learning, it seems creating a comprehensive and instructionally sound blended learning solution should be fairly easy.

But it’s not.

Simply stringing together a bunch of learning assets into the curriculum isn’t enough to encourage individuals to complete the blend. That’s because blended learning is much more than content associated with a common theme. Blended learning should create a purposeful learning journey; a journey in which the traveler recognizes the value of each step along the way.

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Topics: Modern Blended Learning, Blended Learning Campaigns, Blended Learning Instructional Design, Learning Campaign Blueprints

A Lesson About Workflow Learning from a Teenage Chef

Posted by Jennifer Hofmann on Apr 16, 2019 9:30:00 AM

15720156_sWorkflow learning is something we're starting to hear a lot about. It's the concept of embedding content into the flow of work at each moment of learning need.

I think this is a great idea. But it’s not really new.  Our children are already doing this.

And, as is typical, they can't believe we haven't been taking advantage of all of the technology available to us to support our workflow all along. (Admittedly, they aren’t using these words.)

I’ll share a personal example.

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Topics: Modern Learning, Workflow Learning

Aligning Learning Outcomes with Business Outcomes: Curated Resources for your PLN

Posted by Jennifer Hofmann on Apr 9, 2019 10:00:00 AM

58943637_sEvaluation of digital learning programs, (when it happens!), often focuses on the technology or the process. Was the virtual classroom technology appropriate? Did you complete the eLearning? Did you download the infographic?

These types of questions don’t often provide satisfying results!  

Instead of looking at technology and process, we should be evaluating results. Who cares if content is delivered in a traditional classroom or a virtual classroom, as long as the results align with the business need?

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Topics: Evaluation Strategy, Curated Resources