We’re all painfully aware that artificial intelligence is poised to revolutionise the world of work. Learning and performance, HR, IT… every department is set for a machine-led overhaul. As the pace of change only continues to speed up, adapt to survive becomes no longer just a biological imperative, but a technological one.
No business will be able to remain competitive without the power of machine learning and all the insights it can generate from the huge amounts of data we’re accumulating. One survey of over 350 AI experts predicted that AI could even be writing a bestselling novel by 2049 (and who knows, maybe I might even have finished the first chapter of mine by then).
What will the outcome for people be? And how does business need to respond? In a world where things change so quickly but humans don’t, learning chatbots could be at the forefront of these transformations. But not in the way you might think.
AI’s ever-evolving capabilities will see it shift away from fulfilling esoteric use-cases and behind-the-scenes content curation towards something more recognisably adaptable, more recognisably creative – more recognisably human.
We all know it’s vital to keep the learner at the centre of any learning solution. But, more often than not, this still seems to be ignored. Sidestepping this challenge of really getting to know your learners and putting them at the heart of the learning prevents us from understanding their intrinsic motivations – and from delivering true behavioural change.
However, like most worthwhile challenges, putting the learner first isn’t easy. Everyone comes with their own idea about what they think a person’s job entails, what priorities they might have and what they truly need to do their job better. Add to these preconceptions those of the project sponsor, the SME, and every other person involved in the project, and you can see why the actual learners’ needs can get left by the wayside. Speaking to learners is essential but getting access to them is, for some reason, like getting access to the Queen!
Who hasn’t come across a list of healthy habits, especially when the summer holidays get closer? It’s also a good time to get your mind in shape for when they’re over, so here are some healthy learning habits to implement in your learning strategy!
There are 2.5 billion people using social media in 2017. By 2020, that number is set to rise to almost 3 billion. Despite the towering size of these figures, they won’t shock anyone. There’s no argument, social media has become an integral part of people’s everyday life, with the average time spent on it hitting almost 2 hours per day. Most learning and development departments can only dream of such a huge level of user uptake and engagement with their courses.
Well, by examining what it is that social media does to drive user engagement so effectively, it’s possible to distil insights that can be applied to learning to do the same. Clearly, social media fulfils (or exploits) universal human social needs for connection, approval, judgement… and endless streams of memes and fake news. While learning courses may want to avoid accusations of fakery, social learning has the power to regenerate user engagement. Here’s how.
While User Interface (UI) and User Experience (UX) are sometimes confused with one another, they’re actually separate concepts, albeit with overlapping considerations. To craft really successful learning, it’s important to consider both and design programmes that are suited for the audience, subtly adding to the learning experience. Once you understand how UI and UX in learning differ from each other and relate to the user, you’ll be better able to use them consciously in your design.
In one of the better known fairy tales, Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Goldilocks quickly makes key decisions when presented with three choices of what to eat, where to sit, and where to sleep. In a modern day re-telling I can’t imagine that Goldilocks would face so few options. As consumers, we are now overwhelmed with the choices on offer. Today Goldilocks might have to choose not only from the temperature of her oats, but whether she has them with water, milk, soya or almond milk, let alone whether she has rolled, organic, or instant oats. What would she choose? I imagine that that the three bears would have walked home to find a girl wracked with indecision. Choice overload is a significant problem in the modern world. Only now is the consumer industry, partnered with technology, understanding how to harness this to influence purchasing decisions. It’s time organisations take this behavioural insight and apply it to how learning curation is done in the workplace.
Employee engagement may be the greatest issue facing businesses in the modern era. The 4th Revolution – the age of artificial intelligence, augmented reality and digital everything – means the job market and demand for skills are constantly in flux, leaving the relationship between organisations and their employees stretched further than ever before. In this article, we’ll examine how to redress this fraying connection, and specifically how learning and development departments are the key torchbearers for employee engagement going forward. If they fail to rise to the task, we could begin to see yet more well-established businesses fall prey to start-ups and innovation companies.
Over 75% of all Internet users are on social media. Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter and more, have now invaded our everyday lives, and added a new dimension not only to the way that we communicate, but also to the way we learn!
With social media, communication is no longer a one-to-one conversation, but rather a one-to-the-community, or community-to-community conversation. The power of an individual using this medium cannot be understated, given that major social revolutions in our recent history such as the Arab Spring were fuelled by Facebook.
I recently posted a blog containing three tips on how to use Dr. Robert Cialdini’s Six key principles of influence to drive learner engagement with your elearning and on your LMS. I talked about reciprocity, social proof and commitment. In this post I’m going to talk about the other three principles in Cialdini’s book and how they could be used to drive more visits to your LMS.
I’ve read the word ‘Millennial’ so many times in articles, branding and advertising over the last few months, that I can just about muster up the strength to type the word myself. Like it or loathe it, they’re topical for a reason, because by 2025, 3 out of 4 workers globally will be Millennials.
Whilst it’s flattering so many employers are taking an interest in how to engage and work with Millennials, a lot of it seems misdirected and based around loose stereotypes. So, to help those who may have been blind-sighted by the media here’s a ‘Dummie’s guide to Millennials, by a Millennial.’
Anyone with access to a mobile device, a newspaper, or even a pair of eyes will be aware of the recent craze, ‘Pokémon GO’ hitting the world by storm over the last two months. The app based game, which incentivises walking outside so that the user can collect Pokémon and grow their collection, peaked with almost 45 million worldwide users in July. So what does this tell us about the future of augmented reality? Or even the future of elearning?
An implicit code of conduct follows a company from the first cup of coffee poured in the morning, to the last person switching off the office lights at night. Although appearing trivial at first, social expectations such as filling the kettle when it’s empty or returning stationery to a colleague when you have finished using it are perfect examples of how behavioural patterns become expected within a work/social environment. Although the examples given may seem trivial, problems can occur when an organisational culture conflicts with the standards set by regulators.
Retaining a talented workforce has become one of the biggest challenges since the end of the Great Recession in the 2000s. As economies are slowly recovering from what is believed to be the worst global downturn since World War II, competition grows and employees have new expectations from their organisation.
This is especially true of “Millennials” or generation Y workers born between the beginning of the 1980s and mid-1990s. Having made their first steps on to the career ladder at the beginning of the new century, they bring with them new expectations and standards in the workplace.
Rejecting one-size-fits-all learning also means rejecting the delusion of a “total” learning platform
It was interesting to see a recent article proclaiming something along these lines: the age of generic, one-size fits all learning is finished! It seemed like the article was simultaneously a tearful salute to the baroque glories of a golden age of elearning courses like Model T Ford cars and a trumpet blast to welcome its replacement: personalised learning, the wondrous future!
But this “era of one-size fits all learning” never existed. As I have mentioned in a previous post, the practice and experience of learning has always been highly personalised. The Socratic method is personalised and that is 2,400 years old. It is just that now our learning technology is catching up. But it’s good to see growing recognition of what we’ve been working on and talking about throughout the year: personalisation is absolutely indispensable.
A recent episode of This American Life told the story of the NUMMI car manufacturing plant in Freemont, California. In 1984, NUMMI was opened in a joint venture between General Motors (GM) and Toyota. At NUMMI, Toyota showed GM the secrets behind making, back then, some of the world’s best built and most reliable cars.
When it opened, the majority of NUMMI’s workforce were old hands from the old Freemont plant, which was considered one of GM’s worst. Employees drank on the job, were frequently absent, and even committed acts of petty sabotage.
But Toyota execs believed their system would turn bad workers into good ones. So in the spring of 1984, Toyota started flying the old GM workforce to Japan in groups of 30 to learn its system for making cars.
There’s a new kid on the block, and he’s getting too big to ignore. Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) are collections of online courses created for mass participation, accessed through the web. Anyone, anywhere in the world can enrol with no more than an internet connection. MOOCs come in all shapes and sizes, from the Khan Academy aimed at children of school age, to EdX created by Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), to Udacity or Coursera, both launched as Silicon Valley start-ups.
A couple of months back I made the decision to delete my LinkedIn profile, a decision greeted with incredulity from all quarters. The most memorable criticism came from my friend Tom when we were in the pub. “You idiot!” he gasped, before exclaiming “IT’S THE MOST IMPORTANT ONE!”
In my last blog I discussed the increasing conflict between the long established listen and learn styles of presenting and the ever increasing use of mobile devices by participants during talks. In the first part of my blog I looked at how listeners can ensure these devices don’t disrupt their learning experience. This week we come to the bit everybody has been waiting for. How can presenters ensure they get the most engagement out of those people tapping away on iPhones, iPads and a range of other devices?
So we shot and we shared. At Learning Technologies 2011, we ran an experiment in social learning by inviting people to be filmed answering one of six questions about our industry, such as how were they using social media in learning and what did they think was the best use of mobile technology. We shared these short videos by uploading them, after some simple editing, to our YouTube channel.
Being one of the newest members of the team here at Saffron Interactive, I’ve had to get to grips with the concept of e-learning. In the last few months I’ve come to understand what the company is about and the passion behind it. But it wasn’t until the other day that I understood just how much e-learning has to offer and how it is part of our everyday lives.
Last week I gave a seminar with my colleague Jennifer at Learning Technologies 2010 on the subject of social learning. We were pleasantly surprised to see a large audience spilling over into the aisles and (bar a few microphone issues) our presentation seemed to go down well. The theme of Saffron’s stand at the event was also social learning and, despite the lack of smoothies this year, attracted a lot of attention. All in all, over the two days I spent a lot of time thinking and talking about the topic. So, social learning: is it just the latest buzzword or is it something that’s worth taking seriously?
We’ve all heard stories of or witnessed the powers of social media, so why not create your own success stories by embracing these technologies and embedding them in your learning strategy? Often, the problem is how to get buy in from the business. So here are Saffron’s top five tips for taking the first steps towards winning support in your organisation.