Design POV

// Best Practices with Adult Learners in the Workplace //
I create personalized, learner-centric training experiences based on sound, proven adult learning theory. This begins with acknowledging and honoring learner experiences and supporting the personalization of content. I always begin with the end in mind.
I ASK:
How will staff use this information?
How will this training inform their work?
What are the ultimate business goals for this work?
I create opportunities for deep collaboration and connection. Adult learners are accustomed to being self-directed and active. They expect opportunities to learn from the trainer, but also to contribute their own expertise. I build in time for participant-led discussion, self-directed learning and opportunities to actively build relationships across a learning ecosystem. I favor the work of Marc Rosenberg, Lombardo and Eichinger's 70-20-10 model when used in context, and the emerging work around design for learning experience
I ASK:  
How can you draw on the expertise and experience of participants during this training?
Where can staff share their own best practices?
How can we pull the learning out into the ecosystem for ultimate transfer?
I connect learners to relevant, practical and experiential learning opportunities. Adults learn best when they understand the practical applications of what they are learning. 
I ASK:
How can staff immediately apply this skill, process or action?
I design and deliver programming that engages multiple learning styles. Adults generally retain 20% of what they hear, 30% of what they see, 50% of what they see and hear, 70% of what they say, and 90% of what they do and say. I remain mindful of these differences in designing programming which helps create a more effective learning environment. I follow closely Mayer's Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning when designing for a blended interface.r
I prioritize comprehensive design, meaning that  I look for the big-picture of how a learning experience in used in the environment, and how it fits into the overall program goal. Opportunities for growth are significantly higher when the learning and engagement extends out onto the "long tail," beyond a single session, team, or event. 
I ASK:
How can you set or create expectations beyond a single learning experience?
Can you build an overall schema for workplace and personal learning that promotes the business goals and career growth?
I believe that we design FOR learning experience, but that the learner also brings a component to the experience that cannot be controlled by the designer, therefore the total learning experience remains with the individual. I understand the learner, and seek to remove the friction between her and the interfaces that deliver content. I am especially interested in how organizations seek to use talent development to support engagement leading to performance.
I ASK:
How Do We Know That Learning Leads to Performance?
High-performing organizations constantly evaluate their activities to determine gaps in performance and competencies and how they align up with organizational goals and department goals. Learning in a business environment is not merely “knowing” or being “informed about,” but is about introducing activities that stimulate active decision making instead of a simple recall.
Aligning training goals with corporate goals is a key first step in deciding how you will know that the learning experience has been successful. First, I use a Training Needs Analysis and competency-based approach. This boils down to identifying goals (performance outcomes for a department), tasks needed to achieve those goals and the knowledge, skills attitudes needed to perform those tasks. Then, I define and prioritize the goals to determine which training activity is most suitable and which will have the most impact on performance.


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