What we learned at Future-Proof Your Training Business 2019
Walking through the rain in London last Wednesday, I heard that several tube lines had severe delays. I wondered how many people would be deterred from going out to an event with the title: Future-Proof Your Training Business.
My fear was misplaced. A great group of learning professionals came to learn, network and share their experience about a wide range of topics relating to their training (business).
Here are the seven takeaways from the event,
written down by our UK based colleague:
Jan Jills van Delsen.
Networking for me always is an important part, and there was plenty of opportunity for it. Starting with lunch; people got together and caught up with their acquaintances. Once in the meeting room, I really liked that people sat down at the tables and everybody immediately introduced themselves and started chatting.
2. Transformational learning
In this working life, you will likely not have one type of job. A great example is Arnold Schwarzenegger, who went from being a world-class bodybuilder to an actor and became governor of California. Three completely different careers and skill sets. Ger Driesen introduced the terms transactional and transformational learning. Transactional learning relates to your current job and transformational learning to your next career. If you are able to ‘future proof’ the professionals you serve, it can be a great strategy to future proof your training business.
3. Didactical models
Valli Rajagopal from Digital Learn talked about how a training company can consider several didactical models when building an online presence. I was introduced to Cognitive Apprenticeship and Community of Enquiry. The first one is about a master teaching skills to an apprentice. This is a much-used theme in Hollywood movies. Community of Enquiry is a group of learners engaging in challenging situations. A good example is doing your course and working on problem-solving cases in teams.
4. Technology update strategy
Technology moves quite fast, and the platform that powered your online and blended training delivery five years ago might well be outdated. Iain Dickens from ACCA discussed what questions you should ask yourself if you want to renew the technology in your training delivery.
5. What financial models can I choose from?
Andrew Herbert from CIEH talked about the many financial models that the different vendors work with. Many of these models seem to work best for the vendor but not for the customer. Transparency and simplicity determine if a vendor is easy to work with. If you’re a big enough customer, you can probably determine your own financial model.
6. What does a shift in L&D skills mean for the training provider?
Donald Taylor (LPI) looked at a customer of the training provider, the L&D professional. How does their role change and how does that affect the training provider? The LPI introduced the capability map. E.g. L&D professionals will need to learn about data analytics. As more training is delivered online and as blended programs, more data becomes available to measure results and impact. This means that training providers are asked for more detailed reports but will also have to make sure that they can explain the data to their customers.
7. Wrap up via the ‘unpanel’
An approach often used at events is a panel discussion. That can be great although panellists are more engaged than the audience. Ger Driesen ‘flipped’ the model and moderated the ‘unpanel’ session. The speakers from previous sessions came up with questions and the audience discussed those questions at their table to find answers. The questions were:
How to get started with (learning) data?
How can you make the impact of learning explicit and visible?
How to work most effectively with ‘subject matter experts’?
What is the most-effective learning technology you came across?
How to handle a ‘pushy’ request for training from a manager or client without any prior analysis?
The answers showed ‘the wisdom of the crowd’ and were good input to explore further during the drinks reception.