Reflecting on the Past to Handle the Future in Learning and Performance

on January 21, 2011

In the Jan/Feb issue of The Watercooler, we talked about trends for 2010.  There seems to be an increasing panic in the area of Learning & Performance centered around technology and Millennials entering the workforce…pushing everyone to be on the cutting edge.  I’m not convinced that Millennials are overwhelming the workforce; Boomers and X’ers still make the rules, and Millennials need to adjust to these rules (not everyone adjust to the Millennials!).  Part of this means training on some basic skills to enter the workforce: accountability, critical thinking, etc.  As with any forecast, this is a guess, and I’d like to hear different opinions (or you can agree with me!).

One trend that I hope continues is the focus on design!  How many times do we construct training for a system or workflow that is poorly designed…and subsequently create some very painful training programs!  One reader recently commented, “Why are so many applications designed to make sense to the guy who programmed them but not to the person who uses them?  Good games allow you to pick them up, start playing, die without too much of a penalty, and then hit reset.  But I’ve seen learning programs that show 46 steps to perform a single activity. Even the most diabolical puzzle game wouldn’t inflict 46 steps on a player to solve it!”  I’d love to hear your stories about training for poorly designed systems…and how you handled it!

 

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