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Monday, December 08, 2008

100 Conversation Topics

Today, I saw a post by someone suggesting ways to come up with ideas for blog post topics and they gave some examples. The examples were not all that relevant to most of the readers of this blog, but it definitely sparked a thought for me.

Almost every time I have a conversation, I learn something new. Most of the time I learn something, I write a blog post. But I don’t have nearly enough time to have conversations, learn and write blog posts. So now that some people called me influential, I’m hoping that I can leverage my influence to inspire people to have a conversation with me and help me with my lack of time.

So, here are my suggested 100 conversation topics that I wish I had time to speak to you (yes YOU) about. And since I’m sure I’d learn something, I’d likely write up a post about it. But since I don’t have time for either ...
I’m hoping you will just pretend we had the conversation and write a summary of the conversation we had.
If you are a blogger, then posting the conversation is great. Point me to it by putting a link to: 100 Conversations and the exact text "100 Conversations" in your post and I'll find it via blog search. Also please include terms and a link that will help it get put into appropriate categories in the eLearning Learning Community. I've included some examples below, but I got tired after a while and I'm hoping that you will help include terms / links in your post that will help them get categorized using some of the examples I've included. You can also point me via a comment.

I’ll also try to make sure that readers of this blog see it via blog posts. My goal is to make sure that I use this as an opportunity to have a more meaningful conversation with you.

If you are not a blogger then start a blog so we can have this conversation. It's a great start to your blog. And likely I can get you some initial traffic.

If you aren’t willing to start a blog, then send it to me via email, let me know if it can be public, and if so, I can see if it would work for me to post it somewhere.

This is a bit of an experiment, so please bear with me if I’m slow or don’t quite have it all figured out. And please follow the specific instructions above (about links and categories) to make sure that this works out. Oh, and if this is a really bad idea, or there's a better way to do it, or whatever, then maybe that would be good to have a conversation about.

Important - please keep in mind that the audience here is learning professionals involved in the use of technology for learning. So, please write the conversation for me and for them. Here are my 100 conversation topics …
  1. Here’s the eLearning Authoring Tool we chose to use and approach we used to evaluate and decide. And the major decision criteria that really differentiated for us was…
  2. Here are the surprises we found after we chose our eLearning Authoring Tool ….
  3. Here’s my eLearning Authoring Method or Trick
  4. Topics 1, 2, 3 for LMS, LCMS, Audio, Virtual Classroom Tool, Screencast, Wiki, eLearning Game Tool, etc.
  5. An eLearning Activity I created or Interactivity I added to an online course that I thought was a good idea.
  6. Here’s how I use Facebook for personal learning
  7. How I use Twitter for personal learning
  8. How I use Blogging for personal learning
  9. Where I believe social media can be adopted by learners in my organization.
  10. A plan for adopting social media as a learning tool in our organization.
  11. Where we have adopted social media as a learning tool in our organization. What our experience has been so far? What we’ve learned so far?
  12. My thoughts on the ROI of eLearning 2.0.
  13. The problems with eLearning 2.0 in my organization.
  14. How I found an answer to a work problem using a learning community.
  15. A search method I use that I don’t think a lot of other people use.
  16. Five presentations related to eLearning that learning professionals should see.
  17. Example of successful precedent searches. In other words, where and how do you find examples that you can use as a starting point?
  18. Where I’ve found good source training content for common training needs.
  19. Examples of how I conduct high consequence searches. In other words, what do I do when I need to make sure that I’ve found the right stuff. Found everything. So I won’t get a question from left-field that throws me off in my presentation.
  20. Which desktop search tool I use and why.
  21. My aha moment during a personal learning or formal learning experience?
  22. How I make my conference experiences more effective.
  23. Something that I’ve not seen written about recently that I think is really good to keep in mind.
  24. A long, lost blog post that needs to be revisited.
  25. Ways that my children are learning that is significantly different from how I learn.
  26. New places (online or not) that I’m finding interesting conversations.
  27. What I’ve given up in order to have more time for X.
  28. How do I decide what to scan and what to give up?
  29. How do I balance skimming and reading? How has this changed for me?
  30. Five videos of interest to learning professionals.
  31. Things I've done as follow-up to improve effectiveness of learning.
  32. Five podcasts for learning professionals.
  33. How do I envision my audience.
  34. After LinkedIn, Delicious, Twitter and Facebook, the next three are...
  35. The learning project I really think should be done by my organization.
  36. The best and worst use of money by learning professionals.
  37. How learning professionals as a group should be better using social media to help each other.
  38. My recommendations of books for learning professionals.
  39. A tool I haven’t seen that I’d like to have.
  40. My ideal conference would be?
  41. Branding and messaging strategies I’ve used for my learning initiatives.
  42. My favorite learning story.
  43. People I’d like to meet in person to have a conversation.
  44. How I would/did explain informal learning and social media to my CEO or the head of a business unit.
  45. eLearning in five years in my organization.
  46. How my job will have changed in five years.
  47. Examples of recent, interesting online conversation.
  48. Examples of dumb things that people say about learning in my organization.
  49. If I had a magic wand, I’d …
  50. Common objections I run into in my work … and what I do.
  51. What I’m doing to have a personal brand inside and outside my organization.
  52. Where I add the biggest value to my organization or client organizations. What do I get paid for? Where are the disconnects between my value add and my pay?
  53. What my next professional will be and things I’m doing towards that today.
  54. Email tricks I use.
  55. Something I’ve done to act as a catalyst to other people.
  56. Something I’ve done where if I had asked for permission I may not have got it.
  57. Something or someone that deserves praise (another blog post, blogger, worker, etc.)
  58. A recent tough decision that I had to make.
  59. A tough decision I made and that looking back, I wish I had known something else, done something different, etc.
  60. While I hate networking, here’s how I do it.
  61. How I network inside my organization.
  62. What I do to stay in touch with people I meet.
  63. My hardest ongoing task.
  64. How staying in touch has changed for me over the past five years.
  65. Tools that I get free and tools that I pay for and why I’m willing to pay.
  66. A great example of the use of a tool that really impressed me.
  67. My favorite learning quotes.
  68. How I do my work and where my work skills have changed in the last ten years.
  69. What I’ve learned in the past year that I don’t think most of my co-workers know.
  70. Important questions that every learning professional should be asking.
  71. A great source of information that I’m not sure people know about or maybe have forgotten.
  72. My ways for keeping things organized, finding things again, and keeping lists.
  73. Tricks to working with internal IT that seem to work well.
  74. How I take electronic notes as compared to taking notes on paper that I learned to do in school.
  75. Notes I take when I’m searching.
  76. How I structure my concept work tasks. Things I do at the start. Things I do during.
  77. How I find good lists.
  78. How and examples of exploring a new space. My company is thinking of entering a new market and I want to get up to speed on it. I want to understand about eLearning for sales people.
  79. What do I do if I’ve searched for something and I’m not sure if it exists. I’m considering writing about a tool that I think is needed, but I want to make sure that it doesn’t exist before I write about it.
  80. A search tool other than Google that I use, when and why.
  81. A barrier I face at work.
  82. Something my organization is doing to help employees that I’ve not heard much about from other organizations.
  83. Something I do that I suspect there’s a better way, but I’m just not sure what.
  84. A recent concept work task that seemed a lot harder than it should have been.
  85. A trend I’m seeing in my organization.
  86. Hip learning trend during the past that was way over hyped.
  87. Cool Word, Excel, etc. feature that I use when creating learning objects.
  88. Free media sources that I use – stock photography, clip art, animations, sounds, music.
  89. Something I’ve heard about learning or eLearning that I’m not sure if it’s true.
  90. A general principle or rule that I don’t follow and why.
  91. My top goals.
  92. If we hired someone to replace me that had a similar background, here are five things I don’t think they’d know.
  93. Metrics we actually track that are meaningful and useful that may be applicable to other learning professionals.
  94. A tool we use professionally that I thought worked well even though I wasn’t sure at the start.
  95. Examples of working with different generations in the workforce differently.
  96. Something we should borrow from other professionals (librarians, anthropologists, etc.) to help us.
  97. If I could get the following people (names or types) together for a conversation, here’s what I’d want to discuss.
  98. My top challenges in my work
  99. How I find blog topics
  100. The 5 conversation topics that are not listed in Tony’s that I’d like to have with other people that Tony and his readers would likely find interesting.
  101. (Just added) Why 100 Conversations is a really good or bad idea?
I look forward to our conversation.


Anonymous said...

What can I say Tony? Is one hundred conversations a really good or bad idea?

Think you missed an option :) I would have included crazy (in a good way) which hopefully should lead to excellent conversations.

Would be good to easily bring all the conversations into one easy place for people to read. My choice would be to use RSS feed of technorati search for 100 Conversations. Provided they use that term in the body of their post , they have claimed their blog with technorati and it is pinging their blog you should pick them up.

I would normally use an RSS widget to bring the posts together. If you check this page I've set up the RSS feed from Technorati to show what they look like in my two favorite widgets. You could embed the RSS reader widget into your blog sidebar.

The other option would be to bring the feed into Google Reader and share that way but the trouble is the abstracts from the posts aren't as good as the RSS widgets.

Anonymous said...

PS how do you know you are tired? When you create the link to the wrong words -- sorry :) The link will take you to the page with the widgets not the technorati feed.

Tony Karrer said...

Sue - I'm going to try to do something similar to the Technorati, but using eLearning Learning instead. I have a bit more control that way. (Uh oh, if Stephen Downes reads this he will chastise me for my need for control.)

And, yes, I'm hoping this is crazy in a good way.

And, there's no way to fix comments in Blogger.

Anonymous said...

Yes had forgotten about elearning learning :( (but it was in the middle of the night here - still is).

I think crazy in a good way.

You would hate to know how many people's blog dashboards I've been inside to help fix issues for them. Have quite a bit of experience with blogger so knew that you would not be able to fix my link.

Anonymous said...

Hi Tony

I really like your concept on generating ideas for blog posts. New to blogging myself, we launched ours in September as part of a revamped website, keeping it fresh, alive and attracting new readers is a tough task. Although it’s a challenge it’s also a good one, as I get to read lots of interesting blogs, yours being one, and am always on the lookout for new ideas. So this week I did choose two of your 100 conversations to have a bit of a chat on the ThirdForce blog.

ThirdForce e-learning that works

Inge (Ignatia) de Waard said...

hahahaha, I really love this! what an amazing amount of topics.
thank you very much with this suggestion and list.

Beverly Kaye said...

Hi Tony - What an inspiring and motivating idea. I have recently begun to take my blogging more seriously. I often talk about educators joining the global conversation so I really like the title of your post. As a blogger who is hopefully moving from beginner to slightly more serious I have joined the 100 conversations with regards to my vision of my audience and how that has effected my blogging ICT in Early Learning

Blogger In Middle-earth said...

Um Kia ora Tony

I'm um, still thinking about it. I think I got an idea, just one though. But I take it that you're after 100.

Um, I guess I'm looking for the other 99?

Catchya later :-0
from Middle-earth

Tony Karrer said...

Ken - you lost me on that comment. I'm after one topic with anyone who wants to discuss it with me.

Blogger In Middle-earth said...

Thanks Tony

I think I've just had an aha moment :-)

from Middle-earth

Hugh Greenway said...

Tony, although I wonder whether 100 topics is a little too much to be able to sort the wheat from the chaffe. I do believe there is a huge amount of value in many of your questions. Morevoer, since you introduced me to blogging in the first place and I have just reflected on my on learning from it, it would be enitirely churlish of me not to join the debate.

Happy Christmas and a healthy and prosperous 2009!

Tony Karrer said...

Hugh - I've enjoyed our "conversations" that we've already had. Look forward to more in the future. Certainly what you've written about your experience with blogging is quite beneficial to people who are considering it as a personal learning practice.

SiouxGeonz said...

I think I'd rather have the conversations than talk about whether it's good or bad to discuss talking about having the conversations.

I think I'll go get some work done, which includes blogging about what I'm doing...

Blogger In Middle-earth said...

Kia ora Tony

I apologise for not participating here - I'd love to - but I simply cannot get access to any of the links to eLearninglearning - a very strange phenomenon that I've never been able to resolve.

It is not unlike some of the problems I have with certain other blogs but only when I attempt to leave a comment on them. In this case I can't even get into the elearninglearning site. How frustrating is that?!

Catchya later
from Muddled-earth

Tony Karrer said...

Ken - I appreciate you working on this with me. Hopefully we can figure this out together.