Thursday, July 13, 2006

Corporate Learning Portal and Filter

Again, Tony helps me clarify my thoughts.  Thanks Tony.  (I love this about blogging!) I went back and re-read my post.  I do that everytime I see that Tony has commented.  The line he quoted I was hoping was referring to our past state of affairs in the training industry.  But I think it came across as more of what I thought the future will look like.  I know many, many corporate training folks who agree that the small committee style project work we do is considerably dumbed down, with all of the creativity sucked out, because of compromising and bending to satisfy every stakeholder who wants their hands in the pie.   And yes, THAT is our reality and it is what forces us to create the junk we delivery today.  It's the same reason why so many products aren't as innovative, and WOW!, as they should be because too many cooks are in the kitchen. 

I've just finished 2 intense days with 3 of my learning colleagues at Intel.  Our goal has been to try and figure out Learning at Intel 2.0.  This is a huge topic (with many other Intel orgs working on other parts of it as well) and we covered tons of ground across the many areas of passion that have consumed me for last couple years.  One of the most difficult spots for me is in discussing the formal training development processes in the context of the new informal learning world.  Its the difference between reading the blogs of my 2 colleague's in learning:  Mark Oehlert and Tony Karrer.

Mark and I revel in the delight over the fantastic wonders of possibilities with the tools of Web2.0.  Read this post from Mark.  Tony is passionate about the realm of the ISDer and what that role looks like in the context of these wonderous new Web2.0 technologies.  Read this post from Tony.

I think we all agree on the basic concepts of learning2.0 and the changing learning ecosystem brought about by Web2.0 in the form of informal learning environments and user-generated content...and fantastic possibilities.  However, the passions are focused from different angles and different points of view.  I cannot speak for the others any further than that.

In the crystal ball on my desk I, albeit unfortunate, believe that the ISD of today is not only changing significantly, but that we had better do one heck of a good sales job in promoting our value-add to the organization.  Because the perception whether real of not, will begin to show that learning is occuring without us.  Actually, it already IS, but Shhhhhhh, don't tell anybody.  The learning desktop, the corporate portal, the communities of practice, the self-publishing SMEs, will automate us right out of a job.  Please review this image/post if you don't believe me.

Word on the street is that our customers really like our content, but what they really want is for us to strip out all of the other ISD junk that makes taking courses such a boring pain in the backside.  "Just give us what we need...NOW!"  That means that if what they need can be had by dialing a phone number and talking to a human for 5 mins then that's what they'll do.  Or if they can simply Google the answer then that's what they will do.  Nobody is willing to wait 6 weeks, or longer for us the publish a solution.

Yes, we can add value.  It will be in data mining the social networks for the nuggets of information that are at the core of what any given community of practice is based upon.  Our job will be to improve the nuggets into a consumable node that is availble to new-comers within the group and getting them baselined so that participating in the conversation is easier and they can become more productive as part of that community, or social network, in a shorter amount of time then those who came before.


Tony Karrer said...

Fantastic post. I'd be curious to hear some of the ideas you came up with. I completely agree on the needs statements you are making and the fact that it's very much unclear what the alternatives are ... what does informal learning really mean anyhow? And what does ISD/training/eLearning have to do with it? This is what makes it so fun to be looking at this stuff right now.

Hope we will continue the conversation!

bschlenker said...

Absolutely! It's a very exciting time, and we are all trying to figure this stuff out. The conversations help us get that much closer.