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Focusing on the experience rather than the “product” – so why do IDs focus on “training” all the time?

October 10, 2014 4 comments

Steve Jobs focused on the Apple “experience” rather than the product – you can see a GREAT YouTube video here that shows this.

In the same vein – why do Instructional Designers seem to focus so much on the “course”, and the “training” – rather than the REASON we spend all our hours producing all of this content?

I had a discussion earlier this week on “An Ebola Course”. But for me it was not “…an ebola course”, it would be online content that saved lives. This is a mind-switch.

I would LOVE to see a forum or group of IDs have “No Training Words Week“, where – just for a week, just 7 days, we NEVER used words like “training”, “course”, “authoring”, “quiz”, “test” or ANY of the other “learning’y” words.

Could we/they do it?

Could we get through ONE working week with nothing but discussions on VALUE, or workflow, or profit/loss, or process re-engineering, or risk, or profit, or production or technique or re-financing, or loss, or problem-solving, or creativity.

Is it really too hard? Those are the words our customers and clients use in THEIR daily lives.

Try to talk the same language your customer/prospect/client uses – do you even know what language they DO speak?

Freelancer Instructional Designers – take a risk, sometimes it guarantees success rather than putting the next invoice at risk! Take up that flag of professionalism, but become a “business pro”, not just a “training pro(vider)”. It makes sense doesn’t it?

That mind-switch can be hard, and sometimes, your prospect, customer or client does not want it – but that is no reason not to TRY it. You owe it to yourself don’t you? If nothing else you certainly owe it to your profession.

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Using Articulate Storyline branching to break down corporate silos.

September 4, 2014 Leave a comment

I have a 17-year old teenage daughter. She is currently making sure that our family is aware of her new found sense of “independence” 🙂

In fact, as we get older, in some ways we become independent, but more so we need to become INTER-DEPENDANT. As adults, we need to fit into more and more social groups. We have to work within those groups, and only then will the group give us respect and a real sense of “belonging”. Just at the time we think we are breaking the bonds, in fact we need to make some of those bonds stronger.

It’s very similar to corporate life. So many departments get entrenched in silos, and forget how they affect other groups, and how other groups rely on them.

Articulate Storyline makes branching easy, so how about this…

If you are creating a process course, or even compliance, create buttons that trigger loops/breakout sections where you explain how changes and requirements affect, or are linked to the OTHER departments in a company. Thee might be departments that the learner seldom, if EVER comes into contact with, but it can place their life in a bigger framework.

Branching image

Try and get the content from the perspective of the SMEs in the other departments.

As Instructional Designers, we are always “make content real”, and “make it matter” to the learner, and this can help bring the smaller tactical picture into the larger strategic one.

Why not suggest it to your clients?

You might just find that it benefits them too, and they see your added strategic value – always a good way to get repeat business.

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