Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Stop Applying Band-Aid to Your eLearning and Training - Tip #192

In my past blogs, tips, videos, and workshops, I have always mentioned about the challenge of traditional training as being far from the realities of work.

Jane Hart's study supports this observation.
  • She found that most L&D efforts are focused on activities (classroom training and eLearning) that have little value for learners.
  • So, L&D professionals need to shift (re-focus) their efforts toward “doing on the job” and knowledge sharing. These activities are not separate training but are a part or integrated into learners’ daily work experiences.
  • Learners find the most value in “short, visual, flexible and social” content and training. They also prefer learning to be “continuous” and “self-selected and self-organized.”
But, giving up traditional training can be hard because it has a strong and hard-to-resist momentum. It is hard to redirect a big ship, so we all glide along with the momentum.

We also lack clear alternatives - only extensions of the traditional design approach. As Hart mentioned, the solution is to raise engagement like VR, games, social learning, etc. But, these are merely extensions or covers on the layer of problem in traditional training design. I refer to these alternatives as the “Band-Aid” solutions.

“Sprayers, or those who “spray” learners “band-aid” solutions and content ... are more likely the pros that live away from the work situation so they take all knowledge they can get from SMEs, documentations, and secondhand knowledge and information. They build large content and repositories. This is their strength. They provide solutions, but learners will still have to drill down and find them.”

Point-of-Need Learning

Jane Hart—as well as other experts and practitioners (Clark Quinn, Jane Bozarth, etc.) - has been proposing all along the need to recognize two important things:
  • First, employees are learning all the time at work.
  • And, learners learn from each other rather than informal learning.
Learning must be at the point of need, which I espoused in my proposals on Microlearning. Learning only matters to fix, solve, and improve things. Learning is a consequence, not the goal. The goal is using answers.

We need to find solutions and methods to further push this shifting trend toward learning at work, work and learn, or just supporting work.


Jane Hart. Classroom training and E-learning are the least valued ways of learning. This is what it means in for L&D. Modern Workplace Learning Magazine: The Magazine for the Modern Learning Professional. May 22, 2018
Tip #75 - Insight Sharing - How They "Meet and Mate"
Tip #148 - The Secrets of Graffiti Learning Pros
Tip #140 - “Quick Answers are All I Need.” The Learner at Work Tells Us

Ray Jimenez, PhD
Vignettes Learning
"Helping Learners Learn Their Way"

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