Posts Tagged ‘Learning’

I’m working on a video script. Take a look.

Let’s take a minute to look at the difference between a competency model and a proficiency definition.
A competency model is the traditional way to identify what needs to be included in a typical training program.
A competency model breaks things down into three parts…Skills.. Knowledge.. and Attitudes. For example, an employee demonstrates good listening skills or an employee knows the features and benefits of our products are examples of competencies.
When you build a competency model you end up with a long list of items to include in training. The downside of this approach is that it often misses how competencies work together in different combination to produce a desired result.
For example, knowing the features and benefits of our products is part of how a salesperson makes a presentation, answers questions and even fills out an order.
A proficiency model, on the other hand, looks at the world from a completely different point of view. Proficiency is both a measure of performance and a set of observable behaviors that describe what a proficient employee produces and how the employee must work to achieve those results. Think of proficiency as a picture or snap shot of what success looks like on the job.
So with these two definitions in mind, here is the important difference. With a competency model, you can master all the competencies and not produce the desired results on the job. In other words, all the pieces don’t add up to the whole.
With a proficiency definition, the end result is completely spelled out and training doesn’t end until the employee becomes proficient. The result is important rather than all the pieces and parts.

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Here is a very rough draft of the first part of the introduction.

In 2002, I worked with Jim Williams to compile almost 10 years of experience into the first Learning Paths book. Since that time, I’ve worked on dozens of new Learning Path initiatives across a wide range of industries and job functions. What I’m always surprised about when I finish a new Learning is how much I’ve learned and all of the new, innovative ideas that have surfaced.
So now in the spring of 2011, I’m sitting down to compile what I’ve learned into this book which is really a sequel or next chapter in the Learning Path saga. In the introduction, I’m going to quickly recap the Learning Path Methodology for those who have not read or remember the first book. For those of you, who have Learning Path experience; feel free to skip to the first chapter.
In this book, I’m going to present a number of themes that I’ve uncovered about speed up the learning process as well as applying business and quality tools to learning, training and education. In each chapter, I will be using stories and examples from different industries and job functions to illustrate each of these themes. I will be drawing on experience in manufacturing, health care, sales, technical support and customer service. I will even so how these concepts apply to more elusive targets such as supervision, leadership and public education.

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A Different Education Math

Minnesota spend about $8500 per student each year. It fails somewhere in the middle among the states. So for a class of 30, you have a pool of $255,000 to work with. What could you do with that kind of money?

Well first thing you’ll need is a classroom for 200 days. I’ve booked a lot of meeting rooms and you can get a nice space in a nice hotel for about $250 a day. That’s $50,000. But that includes all the clean up and AV. Average teacher salary is $50,000. So let’s take two of those. We’ve spent $150,000 so far. What to do with the rest?

I know, let’s get them a health club membership. Let’s do $40 per month per student for 9 months. That’s about $10,000.

While you wouldn’t get everyone a new laptop every year, you can get a nice one with software for about $500 each. I got one just like that on my desk. That’s $15,000. Some hotels let you use their internet for free.

So know we only have $125,000 left. We can buy a lot of educational stuff like books for $2000 a student. Now we only have $65,000 left.

I know, let’s get two teacher’s aids at $30,000 each. Now we’re left with only $5,000 for other stuff.

So we have a nice airy classroom that’s always clean. We have two teachers and two teacher aids. Every kid can go to the health club every day. Everyone has a laptop and new books. Must be funny math. I wonder what we could do with the $14,000 per student Washington D.C. spends.

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The model of a teacher in a classroom repeated 150,000 times is so highly variable that it’s virtually impossible to deliver consistent, high level education.  Imagine going to 150,000 factories that make something like beer.  You’d get some great beer, some mediocre beer and some terrible beer.  Sit in 10,000 1oth grade history classes.  Some would be great, some would be mediocre and some would be terrible.  With the current model of education, this will happen no matter what you do. 

Often teaching is geared toward teaching one student or one class.  That’s fine in a small world.  But the task is to educate millions at a time.  Ironically the strength of education in the past, buildings, teachers, school boards, etc. have become the immovable object to change.  So my prediction is that real change will come from outside the system.  It will come from the world of better, faster, cheaper where the innovators and entrepreners live.  Things like IPODS, Google, Facebook, etc. didn’t result from gradual improvement, they came about from completely changing the game.

When the model of teacher and classroom ends, real innovation will happen.

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A lot of the education models originated in a school setting. As a result, their application to a business setting is difficult at best. Education models assume classrooms with a teacher and focus a lot on the individual. In a business setting, there are often no classrooms and often no teachers. The focus is on training large numbers quickly and getting results just as fast. That’s why new models are needed that don’t come from the school education community.

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For anyone in instructional design, keeping track of all the changes and versions can be a nightmare.  I’ve run across a feature of Google the might just solve this problem.  It allows everyone on your review team to work on the document at the same time.  No more sending emails back and forth.  This is especially helpful when you might be doing four or five revisions on a single phone call.  Here is a quick video that explains everything.

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Making Sense?

Being able to clearly present an idea is difficult.  Here is an interesting video that can be used to set up an interesting discussion on how to be clear, crystal clear.

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