I’m been having trouble deciding what to write about for the first post of a new year… Should I venture a prediction for 2009? Or maybe contribute a response to the “seven things you don’t need to know about me” post that is going around? Should my first post be something profound? How about a little bit of all three?
A very old idea has come back to the forefront: people learn more through informal means than they do from our formal training and development activities. That doesn’t, however, mean we (professionals in workplace learning) are out of business. We can make it easier for people to learn on the job, and we can help them to be more efficient and effective in their efforts. My prediction is that we will spend the next few years trying to figure out how to do that. The new tools have everyone excited – blogs, wikis, social networking, tagging, customized “push” technology, personal learning environments, podcasts, rapidly-developed e-learning – the list goes on. But I see people everyday struggling with how to incorporate these tools into their learning approaches. My worry is that we will abandon formal events before we have ensured that learners have the wherewithal to learn on their own. On the one hand, learning is a natural process; on the other hand, it’s not as easy as it sounds. I’ve run across occasional commentary about how the new generation of learners, while savvy in the use of these tools for their everyday lives, aren’t quite sure how to use them to learn. And if they don’t know how to manage their own learning, what about the folks who have spent their careers in a world that revered formal learning? We’ll be spending a good part of our energy in the coming years helping learners to develop e-enabled self-directed learning skills and applying design concepts to informal learning environments and resources. I think. 🙂
The seven things you don’t need to know about me…
This brief list is in response to Michele Martin’s “tag”…
I grew up in Media, Pennsylvania (USA) – “everybody’s hometown” – and lived in the same house until I went to graduate school at age 20. Over the next fifteen + years, I lived in 9 different places in 5 different states, but since then, I’ve become kind-of attached to my cute little house in Delaware.
I’ve had every career setback you can name and lived to tell the tale… I’ve been laid off, downsized, demoted, reorganized, and even fired (very early on…). And I’ve managed to position myself in the best possible career for me right now. Who’d have thunk it?
Some of my favorite people are little kids (or grown up people I met when they were kids). My nieces and nephews, and my friends’ children make me laugh and keep me on my toes.
If you can’t tell already, I’m pretty much a book geek. I read between 60 and 70 books per year (I’ve kept track since 2002). My favorite fiction is in the fantasy genre, and I have enjoyed memoirs, spiritual books, business books and many, many books on learning and development as well. Reading is a big part of how I learn.
If you read “about me,” you already know I love games… my favorite ones are Rummikub and Canasta… I don’t care much who wins, but I do enjoy playing!
I “Googled myself” the other day and found out that I’ve been quoted in blogs that are written in Dutch and Chinese (hopefully, they’re saying nice things), and I’ve heard from blog readers as far away as Australia and Taiwan. I’m just enough of a baby boomer to think that’s pretty cool for a gal from Media, Pennsylvania who won’t even get on an airplane (perhaps another thing you don’t need to know about me).
My favorite vacation place on the planet is Cape Cod… I am convinced the National Seashore is a glimpse of heaven on earth. It’s where I go to think and recharge my batteries, and I’m already planning an annual trek for late September.
Not from me… I collect interesting quotes, so there are lots of choices. This one is from Katherine Graham and seems a good thought for a new year:
“To love what you do and feel that it matters – how could anything else be more fun?”
I’m planning on having fun this year, are you? Happy new year (a week late)!