Catherine's Learning Journal

Wait! What?!

2019 11 25 Wait What

Employee Learning Week is next week, December 2-6, 2019. Wait! What?! Employee Learning Week is an annual celebration advocated by the Association of Talent Development (more here). I know, I know, it’s kinda like a greeting card holiday, tucked into early December and easy to miss. But wouldn’t it be lovely to use the event as an opportunity to celebrate …

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Two lies about work

Nine Lies

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of hearing Ashley Goodall speak at an event sponsored by PSPS (Philadelphia Society of People and Strategy). He is co-author, with Marcus Buckingham, of Nine Lies About Work: A freethinking leader’s guide to the real world. He came well-prepared with common-sense questions, research-based counterpoints to widespread misconceptions, inspiring examples of successful people out of step …

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The power of questions

Bright question mark illuminating pile of question marks

“A prudent question is one-half of wisdom.” ~ Francis Bacon Many years ago, I provided job hunt and career counseling to people in transition. One day, a man came into my office for help trying to land a good job as a news camera operator at a network station. He was totally frustrated because he had a part-time gig with …

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Talent Development Foundations

Book Covers Graphic

“If anything, more and more organizations and industries appreciate the need for deep and ongoing learning – individually and collectively. This shows up in a stronger desire to ensure that people have the support they need to learn and grow as they work.” ~ Peter Senge (Foundations, p 3) If ever there has been a time when talent development is …

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Emerging frameworks for learning strategy

2018 04 26 Frames

I’ve been thinking about this one for quite a while. When I wrote Learning Environments by Design (2015), we were really just beginning to grapple with how to structure (or not structure) learning strategies in the wake of ideas about curation and ubiquitous availability of the internet. Since then, many others have published ideas about how to support learning and …

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Design Thinking: Reclaiming our identity as designers

Design Thinking Blog

The topic of design thinking is getting renewed attention in the L&D space. Among other things, it is seen as having the potential to inject creativity, to provide strategies for leveraging emerging technologies, and to expand our vision of learning support. At the same time, design thinking is sometimes critiqued as old wine in new bottles (and relatively tasteless wine …

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Dare to invite critique

peacock showing feathers

I wonder if you can relate to any of these scenarios: The final review. You’ve worked for quite some time on an important project, and finally, it’s done! You proudly show your finished product to your client and get a disappointing response. She lists a half dozen tweaks she wants made that will take more time than she knows, and …

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Creative Brief Inspiration

notebook showing lightbulb and notes

I’ve recently been immersed in the tools and techniques of design thinking, and have rediscovered the power of a creative brief as a tool for giving gentle direction to a project. Adopting this tool also has the benefit of underscoring the creative nature of the work we do. A creative brief is a construct out of the marketing and communication …

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‘Tis the Season

2017 12 14 New Year

In the midst of everything that goes on at this time of year, I almost always make December a time for reflection and planning. My birthday is at the beginning of the month; the year turns at the end of the month; and there is often something liminal about the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day. In this season, …

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On customizing learning support

2017 11 30 Learning Advisor

As the year comes to a close, I am noodling on new commitments to my own learning for 2018 – specific topics and skills that I want to further develop. I’ll be drafting a syllabus of sorts for the few that are most important to me, and I’m confident and thankful that I have the know-how and time to put …

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