In this episode of the podcast we try our best to practice what we preach and conduct an informal “After Action Review” of the Leading Learning Symposium. The review provides a way for us to reflect on what worked and what didn’t, with an eye toward improving the next time around. It also provides what we hope will be a helpful view into our thinking and process, possibly providing ideas and insights that others can apply in their events.
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Read the Show Notes
[00:18] – Preview of what will be covered in this podcast as Jeff Cobb and Celisa Steele conduct Part 1 of an After Action Review (AAR) of the Leading Learning Symposium answering (more or less) the questions:
- What did we set out to do?
- What actually happened?
- Why is there a difference between the first two (if there is one)?
- What should we continue going forward and what should we change?
[02:08]- A discussion about how the Leading Learning Symposium was meant to be part of an ongoing process for discussion and community, rather than just a one-time event. They also share some feedback related to the structure of the event.
[04:23] – Celisa and Jeff share that there is a need going forward to better communicate/ articulate that the symposium isn’t just an event but part of a process to build community and that it may not be for everyone.
[07:15] – A discussion about the pre-event content including blog posts and Emphatically Recommended Readings™. Jeff and Celisa share the reasoning behind them and how they were intended to add value to the overall process of learning as a symposium participant.
[12:54] – Celisa and Jeff reflect on the priming activity, JumpStart Storytelling, discussing overall perceived effectiveness and feedback.
[17:30] – The AAR continues with a discussion about what happened at the Community Assembly. Jeff mentions that they were very intentional in the language they used to describe each part of the event.
[18:26] – A further conversation about the Community Assembly and how the topic of human vs. machine learning evolved as well as the unique role that poetry played.
[21:30] – Jeff and Celisa review the effectiveness of the hot seat activity and talk about the importance of looking at it more as a process and less as content which helps broaden it’s application.
[24:43] – A reflection about the Content Pods. Celisa and Jeff share their intentions with the Content Pods and how they came up with the topics. They also talk about how they tried to use them to interweave/interleave the four threads of the conference: strategy, technology, learning and marketing.
[27:12] – A discussion about the intended role of collective Q&A after all of the Content Pods to help attendees make connections among the different pods to encourage interleaving. Celisa and Jeff share how they can improve in the future by being more explicit about this as well as by asking the speakers to connect with what other speakers have said to encourage more of a conversation.
[29:44] – The thought process behind the role of the sponsors (YM Learning, formerly Digital Ignite, Higher Logic, and Classroom 24/7) as both participants and presenters and the overall value they added to the symposium.
[32:10] – A conversation about the meaningful attempt to reduce the separation between faculty and attendees.
[34:23] – Jeff and Celisa drive home the importance of the continued need to focus on the Leading Learning Symposium as a process and not an event. They also share a preview of what will be discussed on Part 2 of the AAR including application labs, synthesis sessions, lunch/breaks, and the keynote Rohit Bhargava.
[36:00] – Wrap-Up
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[36:51] – Sign off