Author: Denise Meyerson
CEO of The Focus Learning Group / a Multi-Award Winning Training Company / Telstra Business Women’s Awards Finalist
MICRO is now HUGE! And little wonder. Who wants to bore themselves by sitting through endless clickety, click elearning programs. Who wants to learn in a vanilla kind of way when you could have multi-coloured and multi-faceted learning modes? Who wants to eat a whole pineapple in one go when you could nibble at a variety of fun and different fruit – all chopped up and designed to delight?
Micro is here to stay for good reason. Anyone who is watching the current Royal Commission in to the banking and financial services sector should be sitting up straight. It’s not to say that the training teams in those organisations were not delivering any training on how to be compliant. But, the way in which they delivered that training is now up for intense scrutiny – mainly because it didn’t seem to have had much impact on behaviour!
Who was going to recall anything from traditional elearning programs that had wonderful images and looked really swish but had no way of embedding the learning. After torturing people through 30 – 40 – 50 minutes of endless clicking through some great looking powerpoints on steroids, who even remembers what was covered? And doing the program annually as a refresher, does not seem to have had much benefit.
Oh yes, the organisations had great records that all team members and managers had completed the elearning modules and had answered the multiple choice questions accurately – because after all, the program is very “interactive” and “engaging”.
What do we have to consider if we truly want to ensure that we embed learning through digital platforms:
- Time to convert your learning in to a microlearning format. Consider your users and face the fact that they don’t want to swallow an entire pineapple in one go. In any event, current traditional elearning does nothing to beat the forgetting curve as it does not make an indent on our reticular activating system (RAS). Difference, variety, things that stand out make an impact.
- We want knowledge and skills to stick and thereby ensure that there are changes in level of applied performance on the job. That is where micro learning really comes in to its own! It’s great for ‘moment of need’ training, for ongoing updates and for constant embedding messages to be used as refreshers and reminders of core messages. Surely, that would have made a world of difference when teams needed further training as incidents with regulators were occurring – and this learning breaks the mold of set annual training roll-outs. And YAY – learning can be contextualised and not the generic, off the shelf learning that often bears little resemblance to what in fact happens on the ground.
- Personalised and curated learning becomes a reality when you go micro. You quickly learn to differentiate between what is ‘nice to know’ and what is ‘need to know’. Further in-depth learning is searchable and easily tagged. People who want the detail and the theory are able to discover what they need through in-built “google” style searches – something that a traditional SCORM package cannot provide. A learning playlist emerges that allows for the deep learning that an organisation needs to be successful businesswise.
- Micro therefore does not equate to short and no depth. It is the hook to catch the interest of the learner. More information, further details are all available and don’t have to be cut out of the learning program. They are available through external links, more detailed case studies or scenarios, further articles and other reading.
- The sooner we accept that our learners have changed and have different expectations, the better. They only have about 24 minutes per week (according to Bersin Deloitte research) to devote to their own skills. Their needs constantly evolve and it’s up to us to be agile and serve our learners – not the other way around…
I love this quote from Brendan Carson of Home Depot made at the Elliot Masie conference in October 2017:
“Our mobile devices are the most advanced mechanisms for learning experiences and real-time collective content. Mobile learning provides support for these and other business drivers –
- Quick access to critical information
- Less time spent on formal training
- Reinforced training via performance support.”
How can MCI Solutions support you in your journey towards microlearning?