Tuesday, April 27, 2010

3 Days and Counting

After 3 days, I figured I should post an update about where things are at with this whole experiment. First of all, I would like to thank everyone who has read the blog so far. I have received many comments behind the scenes from people wishing to congratulate me on my new venture and to throw in a few cents for me to think about. I really appreciate it and am surprised by how many people have already popped by!

Interestingly enough, however, the comments all related in some way to the fact that the responder doesn't have an answer to the question I posed to "the collective", but that they are eager to read more about what I find out. I find a couple of things interesting about that:

1) Blogs (if I am understanding their purpose correctly, which I may very well not be) are meant to be collaborative. However, to be collaborative, others need to be willing to jump into the mix and publicly claim their own thoughts, beliefs, perceptions or areas of uncertainty alongside mine.

2) If it is true that the answer to any question is found in the collective (not just within any 1 or 2 wise people in the collective), then it seems that the collective would need to somehow share whatever knowledge they do have with each other. Through that process, in some magical way which I am as of yet uncertain about, this may bring out wisdom the group holds as a whole. After all, interacting with "the collective" is the entire point of this exercise!

I don't have the answers. However, I am putting it out there, albeit to a very small collective until I learn how to reach more, that "I have nothing" (yet another reference to the presentation Bradley Shende gave a small group of us last week). "I have nothing", but sure would love it if someone would join me in that claim and set out on this journey of discovery with me. Maybe together, with our shared ideas, we could have a small bit of something and we could build from there.

Again, thanks for reading. This has already been a journey and it has only just begun!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

The Next Day

Well, I set up the blog and Twitter account and linked them to my LinkedIn account. Then, in true low-tech fashion, emailed the link to a few people in my address book. Then I sat there staring at my computer screen wondering, "Now what?" (I have no idea).

I guess I could start my research for a way to incorporate social media into training programs. I read some sites and reviewed some PPTs that listed pages of types of social media and all manner of new buzz words (new to me I guess), but I did not find anything about how to actually use this in a meaningful way. I am sure it is out there, but I haven't found anything so far.

Recap: I now have a blog, a Twitter account and a LinkedIn account. Instead of feeling more connected, I feel a bit annoyed that I now seem to need to have 3 browser windows open to access information in three different places. I must be missing something...

Questions in no particular order:
- What types of terms should I be "tagging" in my blog posts?
- How is # used in "Twitter tweets"?
- What is this "mashup" I heard about on Thursday night?
- I wondering if anyone is "listening" and if they will answer my call...

Saturday, April 24, 2010

My Challenge to the Collective

Welcome! You are here! I am here. Why are we here? Good question. I want to know the same thing; that is what I am here to discover.

This past Thursday, I was fortunate to attend an event sponsored by my networking group of Vancouver learning professionals. Bradley Shende, CEO of MEDIA2O (M2O), chatted with us about how he and his team are using social media to share information with the masses in a quick and inexpensive manner (and how this relates to possibilities in training).

In short, I was inspired – inspired by what he told us has been done, inspired by what he told us could be done, inspired to learn more about this whole area of life that I know next to nothing about.

As soon as I got home, I explored some writing I did about 8 years ago about why I got into eLearning in the first place. I wrote as part of my application to a Masters in Educational Technology degree program, "I did not always have this fascination for technology, but as times changed, so did I." Ironic, considering that aside from a brief foray into the Facebook
phenomenon, I have consciously resisted almost all forms of social media. I text. I email. I phone... sometimes, but that is it. It seems that this time, the times have changed but I did not.

So, here I am-ready for an experiment in social media. As an instructional designer working with large, corporate clients, my goal is to help them find the most effective ways to train their staff. If "80% of the money organizations commit to training is used for formal learning, but 80-90% of learning actually takes place informally" (Jay Cross reference), and if social media is one of the main ways people are communicating and sharing information today, then I would like to find a way to use social media effectively in corporate learning programs.

Some believe that the answers to all questions can be found in the collective. So, to the collective, I pose this challenge:
Let us find a way to showcase effective corporate learning in action using social media and technology to its best advantage (but we've got to keep costs and development time down too). Anyone with me?