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Pooh Bear and the Art of Instructional Design.

December 5, 2010 1 comment

One of my favourite “lifestyle” books, ever, is “How to be a Complete and Utter Failure in Life, Work and Everything – 44.5 steps to lasting underachievement” (Steve McDermott 2002/7 – Pearson).

Steve demonstrates the complete and utter stupidity of decisions that we sometimes take by reversing everything, suggesting we do NOT do things. Doing this illustrates very powerfully how obvious some behaviour and actions should be if we want to be successful.

Step 16 starts as follows:

Here is Edward Bear coming downstairs now, bump, bump, bump, on the back of his head behind Christopher Robin. It is, as far as he knows, the only way of coming downstairs, but sometimes he feels there really is another way, if only he could stop bumping for a moment and think of it”.

I love my job. I am self-employed, and I create eLearning with voiceover for a wide variety of large and small clients. So wide, and so many that sometimes there are not enough hours in the day.

I love the Articulate forums because there are a HUGE number of creative individuals out there, and a reader begins to realise that there are a HUGE number of different and new ways to do things. Daily, I see the huge variety of production techniques that I COULD be using, but tend not to because of the trade-off between “doing” and “learning”.

I get frustrated sometimes, so many ideas, so little time.

Because there are not enough hours in the day, I sometimes feel my output is getting too “samey”, (despite my clients liking it). I find myself using the same principles, the same structures, the same designs rather than doing something, or at least CONSIDERING doing something in a new way. Whilst I do not like change for change’s sake, it’s easy to get stuck in a “production rut” while trying to close the next deal, get the next course complete, or the next voiceover finished.

“….bump, bump, bump…”

There IS another way to run life. – I “…have to stop bumping for a moment…

From now on, I will aim to suggest, and / or try one new thing per client. There are too many things to do everything, so I have to “eat the elephant slowly”. I reckon that if I try one new technique per client, I will have refreshed my skill set within a year, adding a new arsenal of options to the learning techniques.

Christmas is a time for reflection, and upon reflection I need to ensure I reflect more often.

Happy Christmas.

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