Advice for Starting Your Own Training Consultancy

Jason Meucci and Eric Girard both left the comfort and stability of working inside of larger companies in order to start their own training consultancies. While the scheduling flexibility and opportunity to “be their own boss” have been nice, they shared with me some of the challenges they’ve faced and some advice they have for anyone out there who may be considering the idea of starting their own training business.

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An Easy Form of Low-cost, Immediately Applicable Team Development

A few weeks ago, a former colleague emailed me this note:

Today I introduced your book to my ID team at work and will be running through the exercises to define how we can advance the company’s training modalities.  Just want to say thank you for creating this valuable resource and for building an intuitive website that centralizes various resources along with the related podcast episodes. 

This has been helpful for some of our trainers who are really the department SMEs and for our instructional designers who are learning to incorporate different training elements in their projects.  Your book is a definite win for the team!

While I’m always happy to receive positive feedback from someone who has read my book, I was curious to hear a little more about her team book club, how they went about organizing it, and what specifically had changed. Last week I had an opportunity to get some answers from Dustin Cole, Carlos Merlo and Jessica Bailey, all people who are responsible for training at Unifi.

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Leaders Assemble! Leadership in the Marvel Cinematic Universe

What kinds of serious organizational leadership concepts can be learned by watching movies from the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU)? Authors Sy Islam and Gordon Schmidt argue that there are a lot of leadership lessons to be learned. There are so many lessons, in fact, that they teamed up to write a book about the subject entitled Leaders Assemble! Leadership in the MCU.

Recently I has a chance to talk with Sy and Gordon about their book, about which characters from the MCU were the best leaders (spoiler alert: neither Iron Man nor Captain America made the cut… although there was an interesting spin off to this conversation that revolved around Thanos!) and what specific steps you can take to bring leadership through the eyes of the MCU into your organizations. Plus, there’s an ultra-nerdy trivia battle at the end of our podcast which mixes leadership as well as Marvel trivia.

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Mentoring: What is it and how is it different from coaching?

I recently had the pleasure of talking with Wendy Axelrod, who is an executive coach, mentor coach and author of a handful of books around mentoring. She shared her thoughts on what mentoring is, how it’s different from coaching, whether it’s appropriate for someone to mentor someone who is older or more experienced than them and what an organization may want to consider if they’re thinking of starting a mentoring program.

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Benefits of Getting Involved With Your Local ATD Chapter

About 10 years or so ago, I decided to join my local ATD chapter so that I could connect with other training professionals in the Seattle area. Bit by bit, I grew more involved. I’d attend a monthly member meeting/workshop before work. I’d attend their conference. Eventually I had an opportunity to present at the local ATD conference, and later I began to volunteer. Through my local ATD connections, I’ve found new friends and I’ve also cultivated relationships that have led to training projects.

Recently, I had the chance to speak with Sarah Schillen (president of ATD Puget Sound in Seattle) and Gwen Navarrete Klapperich (president of ATD Hawaii) to hear their thoughts on the value of getting more involved in local ATD chapters. Give it a listen for their thoughts on the benefits of getting involved in a local ATD chapter… stay to the end to hear them go head-to-head in a tightly contested match of training trivia!

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Microlearning Basics

A few days ago I had an opportunity to speak with Robyn Defelice and Karl Kapp, authors of the book Microlearning Short and Sweet. They shared their insights on what microlearning is, what it isn’t, whether a specific time limit is appropriate in order to qualify as “microlearning”, whether microlearning saves time when it comes to training development and they named at least six distinct uses for microlearning. They wrapped the conversation up by squaring off against one another in a training trivia challenge.

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L&D Beach Reads: 2022 Edition

We’re smack in the midst of summer (here in the US, anyway) – a time when many folks take off from work and find relaxing spots. For some it’s the beach, for others it’s the mountains, still others it’s a screened in porch, listening to the rain. Wherever this summer may take you, if you’re looking for a few books to pack away, you actually won’t find them in this week’s podcast.

That’s because I may offer some thoughts on five new L&D books, only one of them is actually in print at the time of today’s podcast (the others will be released each month, beginning in September, that’s how new this list of book recommendations is!).

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What is “training” for?

Recently I had a chance to sit down with a couple of the most creative people in the world of learning and development: Kassy LaBorie and Betty Dannewitz, to talk about training and to answer the question: If learning is supposed to be a process, not an event, then what is “training” (the event) even good for?

Listen to this week’s podcast for some answers from two very smart people who come from very different backgrounds… stay for the first ever edition of Train Like You Listen Trivia to find out who was crowned the first ever champion!

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Instructional Design for Non-training Professionals

Guy Wallace has been working in the field of training and instructional design since the 1970s. He’s seen a lot of fads come and go, and he’s also seen some models and research that has withstood the test of time.

We recently had an opportunity to talk about his experiences, especially as they relate to people who just want to help their employees grow and learn but who have jobs that don’t let them spend vast amounts of time on social media debating the merits of ADDIE vs. SAM nor do they have the time to read a bunch of scholarly articles about how learning happens.

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