With a new year upon us, it’s likely that many of us are thinking about ways to grow and improve. And when it comes to professional growth, we at Leading Learning want to make sure listeners are aware of just a few of the resources we have available that can support an ongoing process of learning.
In this episode of the Leading Learning podcast, Celisa and Jeff highlight three resources that all learning business leaders need to be aware of: Learning • Technology • Design™ (LTD) 2019, the Leading Learning Webinar series, and the Leading Learning List.
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[00:18] – In this episode, we plan to talk about three resources we want to make sure Leading Learning listeners are aware of. But before we do that, we want to acknowledge the fact that we recorded this episode on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day so we wanted to share some of his words from “The Purpose of Education,” a piece MLK Jr. wrote in the February 1947 edition of the Morehouse College student newspaper:
Education must enable a man to become more efficient, to achieve with increasing facility the legitimate goals of his life. But education which stops with efficiency may prove the greatest menace to society. We must remember that intelligence is not enough. Intelligence plus character–that is the goal of true education. The complete education gives one not only power of concentration, but worthy objectives upon which to concentrate.
Too often education seems to be about acquiring facts and skills, about those hard objectives that can be measured. But if you really want to learn, change, grow, and have an impact on the world, it takes character and connecting with people, and a deeper level of understanding of wisdom that MLK was certainly shooting for with these words.
And now back to the resources we’d like to highlight in this episode.
Resource #1 – LTD
[04:19] – The first resource we want to highlight is our annual virtual conference, Learning • Technology • Design™ (LTD) ,coming up on February 20-21, 2019. We’re now getting into the process of posting the program and we’d like to share a little about the event, some of the themes we’re seeing emerge, and specifically about some of those program items we now have for the event.
Before we get into that, we’d also like to explain why we haven’t yet released the program. We really treat it as a hallmark of what we do and we arrive at the agenda collaboratively to find out the challenges and opportunities of prospective attendees. We do this through one-on-one emails, emails to our list (which we discuss below), and sometimes more formal, online surveys (which we did to come up with our 2019 learning business trends and predictions, something we discussed in our first podcast episode of the year). The result of this type of collaborative approach is that it can often take a while.
Higher Quality Learning Experiences/Alignment to “Modern” Learner
Related sessions include:
- Designing for Today’s Learners: Easier Consumption, Higher Engagement, Greater Impact
- Don’t Just Learn It; Do It! Microlessons Focused on Practice and Application
- Use What You’ve Got: 7 Ways to Repurpose Live Attended Sessions to Build Engaging Online Content
We’d also like to note that we put a real emphasis on getting practitioners in leading most of LTD.
Related sessions include:
- A Picture Is Worth More Than a 1,000 Rows of Data: Actionable Insights for Your Learning Business Using Data Analytics and Visualizations
- Beyond Traditional Measurement: The Unknown, Unexpected, and Underappreciated Impact of Our Educational Interventions
Aligning with employers/workforce needs
Related sessions include:
- Case Collaborative: 3 Learning Businesses Share Experiences with Performance Support, Demand Generation, and Useful Assessments
- How to Build a Successful Certificate Program: A 5-Phase Model
[14:33] – All of these areas that we chose to highlight in this episode are in keeping with the major focus areas we saw in our year-end trends that we shared in our first podcast episode of the year. But note we also now have an infographic, which highlights the top six focus areas for learning businesses in 2019.
Sponsor: Authentic Learning Labs
[15:11] – One of our sponsors for this episode of the podcast, Authentic Learning Labs, is also a Patron at Learning • Technology • Design. Authentic Learning Labs is an education company seeking to bring complementary tech and services to empower publishers and L&D organizations to help elevate their programs. The company leverages technology like AI, Data Analytics, and advanced embeddable, API-based services to complement existing initiatives, offering capabilities that are typically out of reach for resource-stretched groups or growing programs needing to scale.
Resource #2 – Webinars
[16:16] – The second resource we want to highlight is our Webinar series. We’ve been hosting (roughly monthly) Webinars for a long time and we want to make sure podcast listeners are aware of them. In fact, our next one, LMS Selection: Mastering the Process, Avoiding the Pitfalls, is this Thursday January 24, 2019. All Webinars are traditionally held monthly on Thursdays (however, not in February because of LTD).
This year, we’re going to be taking a little bit different of an approach—kind of in line with what we do for LTD, where we will try to get input closer to the date as to what the best topic is that will resonate with Leading Learning followers. We would welcome your input for topics that you’re interested in by either commenting on this blog post at the bottom of the page, or by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
[17:58] – Some of the types of topics that we’ve covered in past Webinars are:
- LMS selection (a perennial favorite and the topic of our upcoming Webinar this Thursday, January 24)
- Setting strategy for your learning business
- How to price effectively
- Social learning
- Building capacity in your learning business
- Market assessment
Note that the resources we are talking about are all free (with LTD being the one exception). When we’re thinking about our own Value Ramp™ and pricing strategy, one of the things we factor into it is what we consider inform opportunities, which is often where we’re building momentum. With LTD, we like to get into the idea of perform—where we’re not just sharing information and informing, but beginning to think about how you can apply the information and actually do something with it. Our Webinars tend to be more on the inform end of the spectrum.
Sponsor: Blue Sky eLearn
[22:20] – Be sure check out Blue Sky eLearn, one of our sponsors for this episode. Blue Sky eLearn is the creator of the Path Learning Management System, an award-winning cloud-based learning solution that allows organizations to easily deliver, track, and monetize valuable education and event content online. Blue Sky also provides webinar and webcast services, helping you maximize your content and create deeper engagement with your audience across the world.
Resource #3 – Leading Learning List
[23:30] – The last resource we’d like to highlight is the Leading Learning List. In the past we may have referred to this as the Leading Learning Newsletter but that doesn’t quite capture what you get. There are multiple components to this list including a monthly podcast round up and notifications for Webinars and other key events. There’s also the Leading Links edition of the newsletter (and what we’d really like to highlight here). This is a curated collection of links we send out monthly. We cull through literally hundreds of articles and posts on the Web to come up with a set of six that we feel are highly valuable to learning businesses. These cover the five areas of the Learning Business Maturity Model™: leadership, capacity, strategy, marketing, and portfolio—and then we also through in a sort of bonus sixth area: trends.
[25:45] – To get an idea of what to expect, check out Top 10 Leading Links for 2018. To arrive at this list, we looked at all of the editions of Leading Links sent out for the year and looked at what was clicked on the most. Below are several we’d like to highlight:
#1 – [Strategy] Don’t Start Strategy with SWOT – We’ve never been fans of SWOT analysis, and this post at Innovation Excellence does a great job of explaining why you shouldn’t be either.
#2 – [Portfolio] What Research Tells Us About Chunking Content – We’ve known the importance of chunking for years, but practicing it is still often the exception more than the rule. In this brief post, Patti Shank discusses what qualifies as “chunking” and why it is so important. She also provides a valuable list of references on the topic.
#6 – [Marketing] How to Write Product Descriptions That Sell – We’ve been around the block enough times to know that poor product descriptions are a pervasive problem across the learning business. While Neil Patel does not address educational products directly in this post, the seven areas he covers apply to pretty much any product. Address even just one or two of these more effectively and we guarantee your sales will go up.
#5 – [Capacity] The Productivity Booster You Have in Your Pocket, But Probably Don’t Use – This post on the Harvard Business Review blog struck a chord because we ourselves do not make great use of this particular productivity booster. Maybe the time has come.
Also note that all candidates for Leading Links get posted on our Facebook page.
[33:42] – A summary of everything discussed and all the resources shared.
[35:12] – Wrap-Up
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[37:20] – Sign off