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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Required Reading for Training Managers

Great post from Karyn Romeis -Either it matters or it doesn't. It discusses the all too common issue that learning professionals receive assignments to create learning solutions only to find out that the client doesn't really know what they want/need, and worse yet, really don't care, or the audience isn't willing to give time / attention to it, or you lack SME attention, etc.
There is often the perception on the part of the client that they should be able to say "We want an elearning about health and safety in the workplace" and we will go away for a few days, only to return with an all-singing, all-dancing piece of elearning that covers exactly what they wanted to cover and includes all sorts of sexy graphics and clever interactions.
Later in the post ... she raises a great question.
So when they say the same things of the management development programme they have asked me to develop, but getting access to SMEs and stakeholders is like pulling teeth, well then I have a hard time believing them. When words and actions are mismatched, the true message is in the actions.

Wouldn't you say?
I've discussed similar kinds of issues in What Clients Really Want : eLearning Technology.

But what really struck me as I read this and also took a look back at some of the discussion between Karyn and Wendy (see Please Stop Throwing Stuff at Me!!!!) ...

This is fantastic stuff that should be required reading for all Training Managers.

It's a great example of the value of blogging. It offers Wendy and Karyn fantastic opportunities to help each other out ... sometimes they are the only two leaving comments. But, it is also quite a treasure trove of information on what works or doesn't work in their worlds.

As I'm thinking about it - likely it's a treasure trove for anyone starting out being an eLearning developer / designer. This is what life is really like. This is what you face. This is how they handle it.

This represents some of the best of what blogging is all about!


Wendy said...

I'm glad to hear that my ramblings / ventings are still helpful to others. Not sure how Karen would define our online conversation. I've been seeing it as a long-form, international public therapy group.

It's nice to know that no matter where you are in the world, instructional designers run into the same issues. I may not be helping Karen all that much, but at least I feel better knowing that we are all in the same boat :' )

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the linklove, Tony. As Wendy says, more important than concrete 'help' in these situations is the sympathetic (even empathetic) listening ear of someone who knows who deals with the same frustrations while being driven by the same passions.

As to how I would define our online conversation... well I would define it as exactly that: a conversation that just happens to take place online. If we were closer together, geographically, perhaps we would go out for coffee, but as it is, mutual commenting and the occasional game of Scrabulous (on FaceBook) is what we have available to us.

Wendy said...

And sadly, because I'm in the states, I don't even have Scrabulous anymore :'(

Anonymous said...

As of today, neither do I, Wendy - and I was right in the middle of a game in which I had played my highest scoring word EVER. A bingo across two double word scores! I'm gutted!