aLearning Blog

Online Learning for Trade Associations

14 Things We Can Learn from the BEST – Part 2

Posted by Ellen on January 4, 2010

What started as a short list of what we can learn from the winners from ASTD’s 2009 BEST Awards grew, so here’s the second of four posts.

Oh, and did I mention that these are in no particular order? No special year-end countdown here — they’re all important.
5. With budgets cut everywhere, more training departments have been faced with doing more with less. Rapidly-changing markets also demand that education and training be developed and deployed more quickly than ever.
      What are you doing to shorten your design to delivery process while retaining the level of quality your members expect?
      How can technology help?
      How agile are your volunteer content leaders and contributors when it comes to providing the expertise you need, when you need it? What are you doing to help them be as efficient in their roles as they can be?

6. Some organizations are finding that their employees are responding exceedingly well to college credit. Partnering with colleges and universities — near and far, via distance education and elearning — is going beyond connecting for mutual content to providing college credit, sometimes for reduced fees.
      Are you making the most of existing college and other courses to provide the best content AND value to your members?

7. Successful organizations integrate learning within all functions. For example, CSC (formerly Computer Sciences Corporation) launched a brand campaign — and the learning function was involved in several ways.
      How involved are you in supporting marketing, membership, leadership, and other association functions?
      Are you recognized internally as providing unique value, or is education narrowly defined in your organization? For example, who drives and implements orientation or your new board members? Isn’t this a training situation? If you don’t have a role in it, why don’t you?

8. A few have incorporated careful use of well-designed games to accomplish the learning objectives. In one case, a Jeopardy-style game measures learning retention for an online course; in another, the game is used during face-to-face training to stimulate discussion and because one team will win, competition drives participation and bonding with colleagues.
     Are you using games within your offerings? Are they added extras to keep people’s attention, or do they contribute to the learning goals? 
      If you have not added games to your learning mix, why not? If you’re sure your members wouldn’t respond to game within learning, have you asked colleagues at similar associations about their luck with games? (Sometimes the people you’d least expect to respond to them become your greatest supporters!)
What else can we learn from our first cousins in corporate training?

Next time: 9-11

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