How can everyone on your team learn from one person’s professional development experience?

On Thursday, I shared a short story about a recent team meeting that was nothing short of magical. One of my colleagues, Erin Clarke, had recently attended a virtual conference and shared a few of her take-aways with the rest of our team. As she shared, the team grew more curious about how the rest of us could apply some of the things Erin was sharing.

Perhaps you just returned from ATD’s International Conference and Expo. Perhaps you or someone on your team attended a virtual conference, or even a webinar. During today’s podcast, Erin and I talked a little more about how she was able to inspire the entire team with both curiosity and the desire to try new things by sharing her own virtual conference experience.

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Help! My podcast was highjacked!

Ok, “highjacked” may be a little extreme. Maybe “I yielded the interviewer seat to a professional colleague so I could be the subject of the interview” is more like it.

You may have heard that I have a book coming out tomorrow.

At some point in 2011 I decided I wanted to write a book, but my writing was rusty. My 2012 New Years Resolution was to start a blog in hopes that I could knock off the writing rust while compiling some ideas about learning and development. Here we are, about 10 years after I had the urge to write a book. And in today’s Train Like You Listen episode, Sophie Oberstein (author of Troubleshooting for Trainers) spent some time grilling me about this book.

Today’s episode is a little longer than usual, so if you don’t have the time to listen to this witty back-and-forth between Sophie and I, then just trust me, my book is awesome and you ought to buy it!

I write that last arrogant suggestion in quasi-jest (if you think the book could be helpful to you as you put together your training programs, I’d love if you bought a copy!). I’d like to thank each and every one of you for taking some time out of your schedule to read my posts and listen to my podcasts each week, thank you for the likes and comments and shares. Thank you for the emails and direct messages you’ve sent. You make me feel like I have something to offer the learning and development community.

Now without further ado, this week’s podcast…

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The Importance of Informal Learning: A Conversation with Jon Tota

The 70/20/10 model of professional development suggests that about 10% of what we learn comes through formal means (classes, courses, elearning, workshops, etc), about 20% of what we learn comes through supportive relationships (supervisor support, mentors, coaching, etc) and a whopping 70% of what we learn comes through informal means (stretch assignments, playing with new ideas, talking with colleagues, having coffee with LinkedIn connections, etc).

Jon Tota, founder of Syntax + Motion and host of the podcast Learning Life with Jon Tota, has literally made his living through the “70” part of the 70/20/10 model – by having conversations with other people. Recently, I had a chance to talk with Jon not just about the value of having conversations, but simply how to have meaningful and productive conversations with others in order to learn.

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A Trainer’s Responsibility: Staying On Top Of Current Trends

If you’re anything like me, you find some cool tools and techniques that work for you, and you incorporate them into your daily practice. Once you feel like you have enough tools and techniques, there’s no need to learn about anything else!

I’ve realized recently that I seem to have stopped learning about new tools, techniques and trends sometime in 2015 or so (Kahoot was totally cutting edge back then!). Recently I had an opportunity to talk with Training Magazine Editor-in-Chief, Lorri Freifeld, about the importance for learning professionals to stay on top of trends, how to differentiate between a useful trend and a “shiny object”, and where learning professionals can get the biggest bang for their professional development buck.

As L&D practitioners, we can’t be like the Cobbler’s children who have no shoes. We can’t go around helping others to do their jobs better, and never think about how we can improve our own craft.

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The Baseline, Spaced Practice, and Reward Structure

If you talk to anyone who attends Crossfit for more than a few minutes, they will likely try to convince you to join. Despite the incessant need for its members to recruit everyone they know, Crossfit is not a pyramid scheme or a cult. Yes, I happen to be one of those annoying people, and I have a theory as to why so many of us are evangelists of our sport. Continue reading

Teaching Style: What Would Jesus Do?

Last week I was sitting in church and I was struck by how the homily held my attention from start to finish. In the homily, the speaker compared the teaching style of Jesus to other rabbis and holy men of his day.

As I listened, I grabbed a pen and found a donation envelope in the back of the pew in order to jot down a few notes. I knew this homily was blog-worthy.

Whether you believe Jesus was The Messiah, just another prophet, just some guy who lived two thousand years ago or just some character made up in a book that a lot of other people find important, the fact is that the teaching style that was attributed to him was very, very different than what was considered normal.

There’s a lot of value for learning and development professionals to take a look around at how they apply their craft and ask: what would Jesus do?   Continue reading

How can you meet your professional goals?

Before the holidays, the Endurance Learning team shared our one-word resolutions. A recent New York Times article claims that 25% of resolutions will be abandoned by January 8th, and by the year-end, less than 10% of resolutions are fully kept. With that in mind, it is important to talk about how you execute on resolutions, and more specifically how you can meet your professional goals.

As with any growth, it is fairly unlikely that any resolution can be executed without a plan. As we embark on this new year, we must follow a plan to achieve our goals. Continue reading