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  • Thursday, February 15, 2018 8:14 AM | Kevin Smith (Administrator)

    Virtual Battle Series: ADDIE vs SAM    

    by: Marc DeCarli

    Creating a learning experience is not easy. There are can be many risks, complexities, and constraints. L&D professionals have several learning design methodologies to choose from: ADDIE, SAM, Learner First, Agile, and Design Thinking. Which is best is hotly debated, and two that are most contested are ADDIE and SAM.

    ADDIE stands for analysis, design, develop, implement, evaluate. It was originally designed for creating instructor-led training, and is considered to be a traditional waterfall method. In other words, ADDIE is a process designed to move things forward in a sequential order. It has been the go-to methodology for novices and experienced instructional designers and learning project managers for years. It is easy to follow, very detailed with many possible tasks, but it can be overwhelming as a result. Opponents of ADDIE also consider its design its biggest flaw; do all of the analysis, then design, develop, implement, and evaluate.


    (Click on image to view larger.)

    Successive Approximation Model (SAM) was created and is used primarily for e-learning development. Created by Michael Allen, CEO of Allen Interactions, SAM is an iterative and collaborative process that provides L&D professionals the greatest opportunity to create the most effective learning experience possible within its constraints. Allen’s goal was to create a methodology that is a more agile, effective, and flexible process that challenges learning designs early and throughout.

    In contrast with ADDIE, SAM is not a linear process. It arguably focuses more on learning experiences, learner engagement, and learner motivation than content organization, presentation of information, and summarize post-tests. While traditional approaches such as ADDIE seek to ensure accuracy and completeness of content, SAM works to uncover engaging and interactive learning events. In order for these learning experiences to be effective, they need to be meaningful, memorable, and motivational. Otherwise known as the three Ms.


    (Click on image to view larger.)

    So, should ADDIE be thrown out with the bath water? Some L&D professionals say no, that right now ADDIE is still the easiest and most effective in certain circumstances. For instance, if you were asked to create a compliance training, a day-long instructor-led training or webinar, ADDIE can be very effective.

    On the other hand, SAM would be the more effective approach if you were asked to create an e-learning project (e.g., workshop for salespeople), with many stakeholders, is highly politicized, and everyone wants to be involved, where time is tight (i.e., six months) and cost is limited.

    While no process can address or overcome all the challenges that L&D professionals will face during an instructional design project, arguably, taking a more agile, interactive approach to design and focusing more on performance than on content can increase the chances of creating a brilliant learning experience. Both ADDIE and SAM have their pros and cons, as do other development methods. All of them provide a repeatable checklist that facilitates faster and quality development of learning events and experiences. But these methodologies can tempt you to follow them blindly. Learning development is a science and an art, and some tasks can be completed easily, while others require innovation and vision. Which ever approach you choose for your learning project, do not let it limit your flexibility.

    Marc DeCarli is an engaging talent development professional with wide-ranging experience in adult learning, facilitation, leadership, technology, and training development. He has 15+ years of experience developing and delivering training content to new and experienced employees, coaching, and leading teams in challenging and dynamic organizations.

  • Wednesday, February 07, 2018 3:47 PM | Kevin Smith (Administrator)

    Virtual Battle Series: DiSC vs MBTI

    by: Kimberly Bellefeuille

    As part of ATD-MAC’s #VirtualBattleSeries, we’re fighting through the great debates in the Learning and Development profession. One of the battles I always hear is which personality indicator is better: DiSC or MBTI. Let’s explore the primary differences between them and see if we can settle this debate once and for all.

    Both DISC and MBTI are assessment tools that provide insight into personality and behavior. Both are widely respected and used by individuals, organizations, institutions and corporations worldwide. Additionally, both are backed by decades of research and are their theories are scientifically sound. Like any personality profile, neither should be used as an aptitude assessment, a predictor of success in a particular job, a hiring tool, or a performance tool.

    So, what really is the difference between the two? Below is a basic overview of the differences.

    The truth is, declaring a clear winner is more difficult than it sounds. That’s because, a successful practitioner needs flexibility to use the right tool to achieve the best results. In fact, in my practice, I often move back and forth between the two based on the situation. When a client asks me to facilitate a session using a personality assessment, I always ask the following set of questions to determine whether DiSC or MBTI is the better fit:  

    • What is the objective/goal of the session?
    • What’s most important for participants to come away with?
    • Do participants want to understand how they think (MBTI) or how they act (DISC)?
    • How much time does the team have to invest? DISC can be understood and applied more quickly – the model is simpler to interpret and for a quick-hit teambuilding session, can do the job well.
    • Is this the first foray into self-awareness for this team or are they experienced with development tools? I have found MBTI is more useful for coaching, leadership development, and for addressing complex interpersonal issues.

    So, in the end, rather than declare a personal favorite, I’m going to say that the personality indicator should reflect the strategy and outcomes.

    Kimberly Bellefeuille has been involved in the Madison learning community for over 20 years. She is a certified administrator of Myers Briggs and a trained mediator. In addition to leading Professional Development at American Family, Kimberly designs and delivers a variety of training experiences related to unconscious bias, conflict resolution, team communication, change management, and strategic thinking. People describe her training sessions as high energy, relevant and engaging. 

  • Wednesday, January 31, 2018 3:41 PM | Kevin Smith (Administrator)

    We all have preferences in life. It’s no surprise that the Learning & Development field is full of preferences, too. In fact, Learning & Development professionals are famous for picking their camp and digging in. Captivate versus Articulate. MBTI Myers-Briggs versus DiSC Personality Types. ADDIE versus SAM. Build versus Buy. Vector Graphic versus Picture Image. Classroom versus Online. The list goes on and on.

    This month, ATD-MAC is sounding the battle cry. We’re duking out our favorite preferences and identifying clear winners in our Virtual Battle Series. It all starts with a VLOG with Kevin Smith and Mark Steiner. Mark is the leading guru on Captivate versus Articulate. They’ll be giving us the lowdown on the history of this notorious battle and what factors should influence a software debate.


    After this, we’ll have THREE BOUTS of competition. The Bout One will start on 2/7; it’s MBTI versus DiSC on the blog and we’ll be opening online debate using #VirtualBattleSeries. Throughout the week, join the debate and add your thoughts and preferences. We’ll put it all together and declare a clear winner before starting Bout Two. Bout Two will start on 2/14 with ADDIE versus SAM. Keep up your online chatter and defend your champion using #VirtualBattleSeries to share your experiences using either model. We’ll end with Bout Three in a Live Virtual Event showdown of Captivate versus Articulate with Mark Steiner – register today for the Live Virtual Event!

    Let the battle begin!

  • Tuesday, January 23, 2018 10:08 AM | Kevin Smith (Administrator)

    Member Spotlight

    We would like to welcome all of our new members and thank all of our returning members from Q4 of 2017 – see our Q4 Member Report below. We are excited to see you all at the ATD-MAC Annual Membership Meeting on January 25 from 2:00-4:00. Register today and hear all the things we’re planning for you in 2018. ATD-MAC is all about adding value to its members as we grow the profession together.

    Part of growing the profession together is having a chance to connect and brainstorm with professionals who are influencing the development field. Member Spotlight is one way that we introduce you to top influencers in the Madison learning community. In this quarter’s spotlight, we are honored to be able to feature Tamela (Tammy) Stafford. Tammy is a frequent participant in ATD-MAC’s monthly sessions and has shared her experience and expertise in leading the learning function forward. She is the Learning & Development Director for the Wisconsin Department of Employee Trust Funds.

    Meet Tammy Stafford

    I am excited to be a new member of ATD since October 2017. My position at Employee Trust Funds as Learning & Development Director began in July 2017. My overall 25 years of experience as a Customer Service Representative, Employment Specialist and Quality Assurance Trainer Team Lead has provided an eclectic background. I returned to school after 14 years to receive my associates, bachelor’s and a Masters in Adult Education and Counseling. My education and experience has helped me to design and deliver a variety of training programs conflict resolution, team communication, job preparation and customer service. I also spend time teaching human services and sociology courses at Upper Iowa University. My family is my greatest joy and I am very fortunate to have two younger brothers and their families and my two sons, Jake and Josh. My sons were recently married to amazing women, so I now have some girls in my family!

     In the last five years at my previous position I developed an onboarding program for new case managers for the W-2 and FSET programs for Wisconsin. My new position as Learning & Development Director is exciting because I am developing a new learning & development process which will track our training projects and bridge resources our business areas will be able to share. One of my favorite projects is a new onboarding program for our employees, contractors and consultants. This program will help our new employees to learn more about our agency and start them out on the right foot at ETF.

    As a life-long learner I have enjoyed the presentations and networking opportunities ATD has provided and look forward more opportunities in 2018.


  • Wednesday, January 10, 2018 3:50 PM | Kevin Smith (Administrator)

    Finding Value in 2018

    by Jenn Stangl

    “What’s your new year’s resolution?”  Not sure how many of you encountered the same question over the last few weeks, or how you responded.  Personally, I’ve never been a fan of resolutions.  A friend approached me with this question and I shared with her a quote I came across a few days prior.

    “Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.”

    This sparked a discussion about how we set such high expectations for ourselves.  We want to feel successful in so many areas of our lives (at work, at home, in relationships, etc.), and in turn, we tend to feel unsuccessful because we can’t meet every expectation.  But, if we look at the value we provide (to our families, friends, co-workers, organizations, etc.), it might elevate how we see ourselves.  We can remove the skewed perspective we may have of success and focus instead on the value we bring to our relationships and experiences.


    ATD-MAC’s 2018 focus is to provide you with value.  We want to give you applicable and enlightening experiences that support you in providing value in your lives.  Whether it is through attendance at our monthly events, volunteering with the chapter, or joining the board, we want to inspire you to find and provide value.

    Our January 25th, State of the Chapter will provide you with an overview of the chapter and some of our upcoming events.  We’ll have time to network, share stories, and information to start the new year off right! 

    To ensure you receive the full value of your membership, I encourage you to check your account (ATD-MAC and National if you are a power member) and make sure all your contact information is updated, including email and mailing address.

    Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have questions about the chapter, want to get involved, or are interested in connecting. 


    Jennifer Stangl is the Director of Professional Development at CUES. She also serves as the President of ATD-MAC.

  • Thursday, December 28, 2017 3:52 PM | Kevin Smith (Administrator)

    Managing a Newly Restructured Team

    by Marc DeCarli

    A while back my team was restructured with the goal of elevating our status within the organization and to better serve its needs. Before the restructure we were a team of trainers; after it, we were a group of people with different responsibilities and a whole new mission. We previously handled onboarding and ongoing development for our sales organization, and functioned as instructional and training designers, product and sales processes SMEs, coaches, sales support, you name it.

    The makeup of the team looks very different now. We still have one or two contributor roles, and most of the team members are Program Managers; Training and Development (me), Content and Assets, and Communications and Events. While each of our responsibilities is different, our mission as a Sales Enablement team is to be the conduit and catalyst to enable our sales organization to get sales done. If it sounds altruistic, it is. What mission statement isn't?

    With our mission statement as our guide, our challenge was to figure out how we stayed within the guard rails of program management and fulfill our mission. Since we added two new team members, we decided to do a team building workshop. We waited long enough so that the new team members had a lay of the land, but not too long where it would lose its effectiveness.

    We took a full-day away for team building and strategic planning. There were many excellent take-aways from that day. For starters, we walked away with a better understanding of each other’s strengths, experiences, and insight into how we think, solve problems, etc. Second, we established our bodies of work by program (i.e., training and development, content and assets, etc.). Not only did we identify the work, we clarified, prioritized, debated and then reprioritized all of it. In the end, we walked away with a clear and more prioritized body of work that we could start actioning right away. One of the most enlightening take-aways from that activity was seeing how each person’s role played a part in very different projects.

    To continue the momentum, it is critical that we continue to meet as a team. We established a three-tiers meeting structure. A formal team meeting every other week, a 15-20 minute huddle twice a week, and weekly one-on-ones. In our formal team meetings every other week, we share updates and discuss our top priority projects, regardless if they're in progress or still in planning. At our twice a week huddle, we meet informally for 15-20 minutes to update each other on what we're working on that week, ask questions to team members, and uncover barriers. And, for our once a week one-on-ones, the goal is primarily for the team member to talk through challenges, seek advice or coaching, get direction, feedback, really anything. Sometimes, this entails discussing things that were also discussed in the team meeting, but it allows the team member to gain more guidance and feedback on possible solutions that were discussed.

    For us, it was important to “own” the restructure. In order to be successful, we had to be mission-driven and take time to pattern and prioritize our work around that mission. By making sure we are all working toward the same goal and checking-in with each other often, we’ve been able to actualize our mission while also moving closer together as a team.


    Marc is an engaging talent development professional with wide-ranging experience in adult learning, facilitation, leadership, technology, and training development. He has 15+ years of experience developing and delivering training content to new and experienced employees, coaching, and leading teams in challenging and dynamic organizations.

    He currently works at Renaissance, a K-12 educational technology company, as the Program Manager, Training and Development for their sales organization. Marc holds an undergraduate degree in Organizational Behavior and Leadership from Edgewood College. Outside of work he enjoys spending time with his wife and two young boys, being outdoors, dabbling in photography, playing acoustic guitar, reading non-fiction, using technology, and watching sports.

     

  • Wednesday, December 20, 2017 12:22 PM | Kevin Smith (Administrator)

    December’s ATD-MAC theme is Authenticity. Today, Erin Lavery finishes her two-part series on her year-long journey to build Authenticity in her work and life. In Part One, Erin shared the commitments she made to better understand herself.  In this second part, Erin shares the 4 commitments she made to better understand others.

    A Year of Authenticity:

    What Happened When I Lost It and Tried Something New (Part 2 of 2)

    By Erin Lavery

    Last week, I told you about the crisis meeting that left me with the choice to either shut down or change up. I shared the 6 commitments I made to myself to try to something new. These were:

    1.     I will be curious first.

    2.     I will show up for today only.

    3.     I will believe I am worthy now.

    4.     I will right-size situations.

    5.     I will wait to act.

    6.     I will act from what I value and not what I fear.

    The commitments I had made started to change the way I interacted with and understood myself in my work. But, if I was going to avoid another crisis, I needed to change the way I interacted with and understood others in my work.

    As I started to navigate and change my view of myself, it started to have a profound impact on how I viewed others. Through the work of exploring and getting curious about what I was learning, I found a growing list of commitments on how I would interact in the world.

    Erin’s Commitments (Part 2):

    7.     I will speak up when I don’t know or understand something. Not only does this often clarify misunderstandings that lead to conflict, but it always puts me in the best position to always learn and master new skills. By admitting I don’t know, I have come to know more and gain more skills than I ever would have otherwise. That being said, it’s terrifying and every time I have to repeat Commitment #3 over and over again.
    8.     I will trust in the wisdom of crowds. In his awesome book The Wisdom of Crowds: Why the Many Are Smarter Than the Few and How Collective Wisdom Shapes Business, Economics, Societies and Nations, James Surowiecki not only wins the award for longest book title, but he also shares the Parable of the Ox. The parable tells the story of a county fair that had a challenge to guess the weight of an ox. None of the individual guessers got the right weight; however, when all the guesses were averaged together, the crowd as a whole came up with the right weight. The truth here is: when we work together, we get closer to the ideal. That is, collaboration always leads to better design and outcomes. Whenever I find myself holding something too tight or too close, I force myself to send it to someone else for review/input. Doing this keeps me honest about not allowing a project to become about MeMeMe (see Commitment #4), but it also leads to better ideas and innovations while opening me up to opportunities to learn from others.
    9.  I will assume the best intent. My first reaction to a comment or situation may be distrust or anxiety, but I make a conscious effort to amend my story of the person and assume they have the best intent. When this is extremely difficult, I default to the question a brilliant colleague of mine uses. “What if they are doing their best today?” What if the other person is doing their absolute best in the situation to communicate clearly, be authentic, and get good results? If I assumed that to be the case, how would I feel differently about their actions? Sometimes this mindset change takes me while, but that’s okay because of Commitment #5.
    10.  I will be authentic in my connection and communication. When I am hurt, angry, fearful, excited, grateful, or thankful, I will say so with respect and with the goal of connection. I will make the choice to choose connection, authenticity, and honesty over trying to protect an image of perfection. My challenge to myself is this: If I see an opportunity to make a connection or be vulnerable, I will take it even if it’s scary (see Commitment #6).

    So, it’s been almost a year.  Here’s what happened.

    I’m happier. I’m more creative. I’m more daring. I actually am more what I was trying to be before all of this started.

    Have I disappointed people? Probably. Do people know that I am messy and less than perfect? Yup. But, they also know that I’m going to keep trying and showing up every day no matter how many times I fall. They know that when they don’t know something, I won’t judge them. They know they can approach me. They know we can muddle our way through together, make mistakes, laugh at ourselves, and do more amazing things than we could if we weren’t being human together.

    I won’t tell you it gets easier. It doesn’t. It’s still horrible and uncomfortable and tiring and scary and courageous and brave and wholehearted. But, hey, according to Commitment #2, I only have to do it for today, right?

    Click here to download a free poster of Erin’s “10 Commitments to Something New”.

    Erin is a Learning & Development Specialist focused on Leadership Development at UW Health. She holds a Master of Science in Adult and Continuing Education Leadership through the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee as well as a Bachelor of Arts degree in German Literature and Pedagogy from Calvin College. In addition, Erin is a certified trainer for Development Dimensions International and Crucial Conversations as well as a certified Life Coach for students with disabilities. Erin currently serves as the VP of Marketing for the ATD-MAC. 

  • Wednesday, December 13, 2017 3:33 PM | Kevin Smith (Administrator)

    December’s ATD-MAC theme is Authenticity. In this two-part series, Erin Lavery shares how she went from crisis to a new normal on a year-long journey to build Authenticity in her work and life. In Part One, Erin focuses on the crisis and beginning the journey. She shares 6 of the 10 commitments she made to herself to find better relationships, results, and realness in her work.

    A Year of Authenticity:
    What Happened When I Lost It and Tried Something New (Part 1 of 2)

    by Erin Lavery

    One year ago, I sat in a meeting at work where everyone (myself included) dug in a bit too much and it got messy and uncomfortable. On a stress scale of 10, I was a 17, and I realized in that moment that I had to make a choice. Either I could make a conscious effort to radically change my approach to work, or I could dive head first into total and complete burnout.

    Let’s back up a bit and I’ll give you some history.

    I’m a chronic do-er. StrengthsFinder calls it an Achiever. I call it waking up every morning at zero and needing to earn my right to a ten out of ten (or higher, I mean, let’s not limit ourselves after all). Brene Brown calls it a “hustle for worthiness”.  I have lived my life firmly and totally believing the lie that my value is derived from my ability to be the best fill-in-the-blank [Best worker. Best designer. Best facilitator. Best wife. Best mother. Best friend. I have always operated under the assumption that if I was the best, I could hustle my way past Imposter Syndrome and into real worthiness. I imagined I would wake up one day and feel like I had finally earned it (respect, value, intelligence, you name it).

    So, back to the pivotal meeting.

     I was presenting a program design that I had put my whole self into. In my mind, this wasn’t just a program. It was the quintessential representation of my Best Self. It was the Thing that would catapult me to worthiness. As you can imagine, it didn’t go well.  People had questions, feedback, ideas, opinions . . . all those benign things that people have that make end products better.

    And. I. Lost. It. Inside.

    Every suggestion wasn’t a suggestion. It was a challenge to my ability … my knowledge … my worthiness to be at the table. And I believed it. I was left beat-up, broken, and raw.

    And here was the moment of choice: Either I shut down, or I change up.  I chose to change up.

    I started by making one commitment to myself. That commitment was “I will be curious first.” Instead of jumping in, diving in, hustling, clawing, and scraping it together, I decided I would only be curious. I adopted the phrase “I’m having a thought that X. I wonder why I’m having that thought.” And that is how it started. Every day, every time making the conscious choice to say onl“Hmmm…I’m having a thought that X. I wonder…”

    From curiosity, I dove into showing up. From showing up to worthiness. From worthiness to authenticity. And on and on. And every moment I make a choice for the following growing list of things.

    Erin’s Commitments (Part 1):

    1.     I will be curious first. Instead of judging or trying to change what I am thinking, I will get curious as to what I’m thinking/feeling and why. I will not try to change it. I will only be curious about it.

    2.     I will show up for today only. Every morning when I wake up, I wake up for that day and not all the others in the future. This commitment came when I decided to start running again. My immediate thought was “when am I going to do it? Should I wake up early every morning? Run after the kids go to bed? I have to plan this out.” And it turns out, I don’t. I just have to do it today.

    3.     I will believe I am worthy now. Brene Brown said it best when she wrote, “Worthy now. Not worthy if. Not worthy when. Worthy now.” When I’m at work, I will believe I am enough. When I am able to do this, I put down the burden of trying to prove myself and open myself to more creativity, productivity, and connection.

    4.     I will right-size situations. As I explained with my project last year, it was no longer just a project. It was indicative and representative of my whole ability as a professional. When I start to get that feeling of the bigness of something, it’s a red flag to me that I’m blowing it out of proportion. This always leads to heartache and disappointment. Instead, I make a conscious effort to right-size something back to what it really is (and isn’t). “This isn’t my Life’s Defining Moment. This is just a meeting.” “This isn’t my Intelligence. It’s just an idea.” 

    5.     I will wait to act. Just recently, a friend told me “The more chaotic things are, the more still I get.” When something happens and things feel chaotic, I am forcing myself to wait a day, an hour, sometimes just 10 minutes before I act. You won’t believe me until you start trying it, but you would be amazed at the number of great innovations that surface when you wait just 10 minutes to act, reflect, and get curious.

    6.     I will act from what I value and not what I fear. When it is finally time to act, I have made a commitment to choose the action that fulfills and restores what I value rather than simply avoids what I fear. This started with having to understand what I value and what I intend to build in the world with the time that I have.

    Join us next week for Part Two of “A Year of Authenticity” as Erin shares the 4 commitments she made to her team that led to more fulfillment in her work and better outcomes for her organization.


    Erin is a Learning & Development Specialist focused on Leadership Development at UW Health. She holds a Master of Science in Adult and Continuing Education Leadership through the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee as well as a Bachelor of Arts degree in German Literature and Pedagogy from Calvin College. In addition, Erin is a certified trainer for Development Dimensions International and Crucial Conversations as well as a certified Life Coach for students with disabilities. Erin currently serves as the VP of Marketing for the ATD-MAC. 

  • Wednesday, December 06, 2017 2:37 PM | Kevin Smith (Administrator)

    by Kevin Smith

    ATD-MAC is focusing on Authenticity throughout December. If you haven’t already done so, take a moment to register for ATD-MAC’s December program “Authenticity in Teams” featuring Roger Wolkoff. Roger will be teaching leaders how to achieve greater team results with Authenticity.  Throughout the month, we also have a fantastic line-up of featured writers for the ATD-MAC Blog that will be focusing on their journey with authenticity as Learning & Development professionals.

    How to Stop from Drowning in Technology

    I remember as a kid (before Memes, before FaceBook, before the internet!) there was a familiar kind of cartoon image: a ragged castaway on a raft, dying of thirst with the caption, “Water, water, everywhere water. And not a drop to drink.”

    I’m thinking of that now as I feel myself “drowning” in a sea of technology, apps, gadgets, and information that I barely know how to use. It’s difficult to figure out what to immerse myself in and learn how to use, knowing that some of the choices I make will prove to be irrelevant way too soon. Do you ever feel that way?

    There are days when I feel like a Luddite wanting to chuck everything I’m not familiar with. You take the apps, the Snapchats, the memes, and whatever else launched and went viral since I began writing this. I’ll keep my website, email, LinkedIn, webinar platform, and PowerPoint. I can get by with those, right?

    Deep down, I know I’m losing out on things that could help me and our business to have a greater reach and effectiveness. But there is so much and so many different options!

    What makes it all the more upsetting is I actually really enjoy learning about the latest and greatest tech stuff. Nothing gets me more in “the zone” than needing to learn a new piece of software for a new kind of project I’ve embarked upon. But I get frustrated in only having the opportunity to learn as much as I need to get the project out the door. I rarely feel like I’ve mastered all of the features, whistles, and bells of any given program.

    So, how are we going to do it? How are we going to find the time, resources, energy, and understanding to know where to lean in, figure it out, and discover something new? How are we going to know what tech is worth pursuing and what we should pass by?

    I think the answer lies in concerting our efforts and being comfortable to share. When we start to lean on our professional community, like ATD-MAC, and synthesize our efforts, we start to find efficiencies and give tech a run for its money.

    So, no more holding back with reviews of stuff! We, as a community, need to hear the good, the bad and the ugly when we’re sharing our opinions. Remember, this is the lifesaver that keeps us from drowning in tech, saves our time, and limits our frustration.

    That said . . .  I found this cool app and I have it on my phone. I just can’t figure out what to do with it, but it looks darned cool. It’s called Adobe Capture. (Maybe I’m years behind, but it seems like this could be very useful to an ambitious ID.) It uses your phone’s camera to capture shapes, color pallets, materials typeface/fonts, patterns and brushes and saves them or converts them to other useable formats. The image on the right is a sample of what I took from my phone at my desk (in poor light).

    For example, if you walk into say, a living room with a particularly striking color scheme, or even an outdoor landscape, you can use this app to capture the colors and save them to use later. Or you can capture images of shapes and convert them into vector graphics. Seems like cool stuff! I just haven’t had time to figure out what to do with it. *sigh*

    What cool new gadgets, apps, features, or tech have you found recently? What about it was worth your time? How could you see it being used? Feel free to use the comments feature below or reply to our Social Media. Let’s keep this conversation going!

    Comment to this blog post, tag us on twitter @atdmadison, or post on ATD-MAC’s LinkedIn and let us know what you’ve been using and whether it’s worth our time.


    By Kevin Smith


    Kevin is publisher/consultant for TEAM Resources, a small consulting firm that provides strategic planning and training services primarily for the credit union industry. 


  • Wednesday, November 29, 2017 2:52 PM | Kevin Smith (Administrator)

    by Kimberly Bellefeuille

    You’ve heard it a hundred times. Continuous learning is critical to your talent management strategy—and your organization’s bottom line. To that end, an essential investment is a powerful learning management system (LMS) and social tools, not to mention great content. But, 66% of learning and development (L&D) professionals say they still have trouble getting employees to engage with corporate learning, and the problem is even more pervasive for virtual teams.

    So how can an LMS and eLearning experiences enhance the tools needed to support virtual teams and help these employees learn in collaborative and informal ways?

    The world of work has changed. Until recently, workplace learning was an isolated event.  Job training experiences took place in a classroom, outside the normal work environment. Today, with so many virtual teams, companies like Cornerstone are offering employees simple, sleek user interfaces and experience that enables learning to be easy and available on demand. In deploying eLearning to virtual teams, content is most effective - and retention the highest - when it is engaging, bite-sized, and addresses both soft and hard skill sets. Social learning focuses on employees engaging in learning modules, i.e. watching a video, then discussing via dedicated online learning forums. Collaborative learning can be driven by virtual employees sharing critical insights and knowledge with their colleagues.

    The current learning trend is around “social” learning. Yet outside of the technology designed to facilitate it, social learning isn’t that revolutionary. Useful, yes, but it’s only used in the context of traditional L&D methods. Any new developments in corporate learning have been simply about adding new techniques to the existing paradigm. Collaborative learning enhances previous learning methods. Collaborative learning shifts learning and development’s foundation from being leadership-driven to employee-driven—though leaders retain a crucial guidance role. Collaborative learning contributes to the effectiveness of the organization in a holistic, symbiotic way. Ultimately, collaborative learning allows virtual learning and work to be not just interdependent, but unified. “Collaborative learning (helps) to build a virtual workforce that can survive in the new world of work.”

    Traditional learning methodologies may not always blend with the speed of business, the global nature of our workforce, or the new generation of employees. Collaborative Learning is based on the premise that individuals learn more through sharing and social interactions than they would alone. Employees not only learn from each other; they also experience deeper learning through the exchange of information and the varied perspectives of their peers. Critical thinking skills are also heightened and deeper relationships are built between virtual team members.

    By extending learning into daily interactions, learners can share experiences, stories, and tacit knowledge that is otherwise difficult to capture and deliver through formal learning programs.  A collaborative learning program creates the conditions necessary for innovation among virtual teams: connection, feedback, and inspiration.  Employees are capable of—and asking for—more from their employers. Studies show they want to be engaged, they want to feel an intimate connection with the workplace.

    Success today for any organization, in any industry, depends on a new breed of employee. Employees need to be independent and inter-dependent, self-directed virtual team players, eager to lead and to listen. Yet developing the “modern” worker requires more than traditional—or even social—learning methods. Instead, organizations must begin using collaborative learning strategies, learning that unifies work and learning to harness employee knowledge, engage the entire workforce, and solve challenges faster. While creating a successful collaborative learning strategy starts with smart planning, its longevity relies on smart technology. Tools that unify learning, technology, communication, content and social networks, are crucial to both making a strategy operational and ensuring ROI. With the right technology, organizations can drive innovation, improve agility, and establish a culture that values both profit and purpose.

     

    By Kimberly Bellefeuille, VP – Professional Development

     In addition to leading Professional Development at American Family, Kimberly designs and delivers a variety of training experiences related to unconscious bias, conflict resolution, team communication, change management, and strategic thinking. People describe her training sessions as high energy, relevant and engaging. 

    She’s been involved in this type of work in the Madison community for over 20 years. She is a certified administrator of Myers Briggs and a trained mediator. She looks forward to the opportunity to be a part of the ATD-MAC Board

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