Like many of you who have been working in this industry a long time, I’ve seen new and exciting training delivery methods evolve over the years. First, we had the rush to computer-based training (CBT). Then we moved to web-based training (WBT) and the rise of synchronous and asynchronous learning events. Then, thank goodness, we moved to the concept of blended learning and the understanding that everything cannot be “online.” Now of course we have mLearning as well as exciting advances in knowledge management systems. I’ve been part of the training delivery evolution from the position of an instructional designer and change management consultant, an internal Learning Services Director, and now as a service provider to my clients.
There are two things I fundamentally believe about training delivery methods today. First and most obviously, we are living in an incredibly interesting time of technology innovation. The creative ideas of 20 years ago that bring learning, performance, and the work place together are becoming more and more possible because of technology. It’s simply easier and less expensive to deploy training using different media and technology platforms. Secondly, there will always be a need for instructor-led or “face to face” learning events. The design of these events will continue to evolve using methods such as “goal-based” learning or the “flipped” classroom. However, I think there will always be valid reasons to bring people together for the purposes of learning, especially in the area of leadership development.
I feel so fortunate to work with such amazing clients who utilize many different training delivery methods. I have one client who has built an entire management development program using blended delivery approaches. The program includes formal learning events, mentoring circles, webinars, and supervisor check points. I have two other clients who have embraced video in the form of low cost “YouTube” style videos for their sales teams. I have many clients who are deploying training and content using mLearning development tools for tablet delivery. It will be interesting to see what the next decade of technology advances will bring.