All posts tagged training

The talk about generational differences is plentiful…but is there really a difference when everything boils down? Teens vs. Gen Y vs. Gen X are more frequently playing games online utilizing social networking sites, reading blogs/ forums and downloading music. I would say that just about everyone has at least one email address (or in my case 4). We use the Internet to get news, stay in touch and research products and services. Broadband access has increased significantly, giving us what we need to find right at our finger tips. Generation V, or otherwise known as Generation Virtual is not defined by age, nor gender but rather by the use of various channels of digital media utilized to discover information, etc. The online environment is alluring to many. Technology is radically changing and generational differences are becoming more apparent than ever as to what information is accessed and the technology utilized to access it. The variety of generations today are staying within the workforce longer and living longer- so why not adapt online activities and training so all generations can utilize them? Multigenerational workplaces and blending of the generations to be able to utilize one type of training for everyone in an organization is now possible and very beneficial (especially on a tight training budget).

I just can’t seem to get my head wrapped around why some people think that e-learning is the best thing since sliced bread. Popular in the late 1990’s, I believe that once upon a time it may have been the cat’s meow…but with all of the (newer and more advanced) learning technologies on the market today, not so much. Is an investment in e-learning still beneficial for companies? Sure, e-learning technology may be advancing – but will it ever be good enough? Or do fancier PowerPoints capture the learner in ways that other more advanced learning technology can? The vast majority of companies are looking to lower-cost alternatives while also providing more efficient training. With more and more computer-savvy employees (read digital-natives) the demand for immersive training is here to stay…and only growing! The ability “to-do” something in a virtual environment, rather than the monotonous point and click feature that e-learning offers is a huge benefit across all generations of the workforce. So why are many still stuck in the rut of e-learning? The real answer is:
People don’t know, what they don’t know!

The real challenge is educating decision-makers that better, lower cost and lower life cycle cost alternatives exist now. The decision-makers are usually advised by constituencies heavily vested in traditional e-learning technologies and attendant instructional design philosophies. The biggest hurdle we see is one of getting the instructional design folks up to speed on advanced vw design and proven vw world benefits for learning/training sims. Once they see the light, there is no going back!

The major selling point of e-learning was flexibility – train anytime, anywhere. Now a host of other vw based options offer that same flexibility and much, much more for less. So long boring e-learning, it’s been nice knowing you!