Kaizen Chasm

PROLOGUE

What’s the key to Kaizen? A: No door to put it in.

Sketch of a door-less cubicle

Engagement problems? Lose the door.

KAIZEN

My 2015 goal is to be un-ordinary. I have to change how I share: more effort on relationships, inviting tinkering to make ideas tangible.

I spent most of the ’80s and ’90s working with companies like Intel and Motorola. Each had their own version of Kaizen, a continuous improvement methodology. It has to involve everyone in an organization to have a chance at success now and in the future.

Intel did it right, at least in part, because there were so few office doors. It’s open-door culture was vital. Dave Marsing, then Intel’s New Mexico site director taught my Intel Culture class. Andy Grove, then CEO, taught my wife’s class. Who taught yours?

EPILOGUE

Having engagement problems across an organization? Bridge the chasm by opening doors.

 

 

Squiggle Cycle

PROLOGUE

“Perception is everything.” — a perceptive someone.

SQUIGGLES

Last night's #caedchat was fun. Q5 piqued my curiosity: What are my professional New Year resolutions? First pass, whatever it is share it with others to increase the chance it'll get done.

Sketch of the cycle of learning and sharing

Learn>Share>Squiggle cycle

@AustinKleon in Show Your Work! describes a learn>teach cycle. I think it should be more about sharing then remaining in contact through the squiggles. Squiggles are the trial and error we experience (orange in image above) on the way to mastery.
CYCLE
Ideally there are two squiggle moments per Learn>Share cycle: yours just after a learning event and the one others have after you share your know-how. 2015 will be different because of new modes of relationship building.

EPILOGUE

Here's the idea:

  1. Learn then share through the squiggles.
  2. Collaborate via social media and professional associations to learn from diverse perspectives.

 

 

 

Cruise Director

PROLOGUE

“Stay between the lines. The lines are our friends.”

Sketch of safety scissors and a bottle of glue

CRUISE

Where did I first hear that cautionary phrase? Maybe it was that late summer morning in '61 starting kindergarten?

Today it's a refrain when training a skill: engage but watch the time. Learning should be more than watching out for boundaries. It should be like a cruise to somewhere. It could be.

DIRECTOR

Cue me. This is where I come in. I do instructional design. “I'm a cruise director for learning.” I reply when asked what I do. “I design learning experiences that get people moving and making.” It's a good conversation starter.

EPILOGUE

I'm in He's The Weird Teacher (TWTChat) book club on Voxer. Chapter 1 was about one educator's teaching philosophy. Being The Weird Instructional Designer I totally get where he's coming from. I'm going there, too.

 

 

 

 

 

Read Tread

PROLOGUE

“Academic success does not come from how smart or motivated students are. It comes from how they feel about their mistakes.” — Hunter Maats and Katie O’Brien in Edutopia

READ

Ever read something, not get it, then read it again? I felt it today reading @quinnovator’s Learnlets blog: Why L&D? The part I didn’t get: service thinking. I need more tread on the idea to get traction with it.

Sketch of a worn out tire contacting a road

Reading for traction: Check the tread.

 

TREAD

I’m a big fan of design thinking, a people-centric analysis and problem solving process. Empathy for others gets it rolling. Service science and service thinking: that lack of traction again. If there’s a problem with L&D (Learning and Development) it’s too systems and tools heavy. Solutions tend to focus on tools first then people.

EPILOGUE

It’ll take a few mistakes with service thinking before experiencing that golden “Aha!” moment.

 

 

 

Gap-Toothed Training

PROLOGUE

“Do you mind if I put you on hold for a moment whilst I research that? Thank you.” Click.

 

GAP-TOOTHED

A challenge instructional designers face is when there’s a gap of some time between when a training program is rolled out and when the skills workers learned are put to use. I call this gap-toothed training. Websters’ defines gap-toothed as a space between two teeth. It’s seems an apt metaphor

Sketch of a school house and a factory separated by a gap

TRAINING

Some years ago I was brought in to help with a problem. Initial sales of a telecommunications product were initially high; sales dropped precipitously a few weeks after product launch. Root cause: gap-toothed training.

 

EPILOGUE

I got an RFP that looks gap-toothed. Facilitated blogging seems a good solution. Tell a story about a potential problem and have workers blog solutions. It should keep the training alive and vital.

 

 

 

 

 

Comic AL Blogging

PROLOGUE

He stared, glassy-eyed, at the clock willing the seconds to tick more rapidly.

Comic of a character suggestion meetings that make things

COMIC

Some days it's one meeting after another. An Intel effective meetings class introduced me to meeting types.

  • Process
  • Mission
  • One-on-one
Comic depicting a long unproductive meeting

Maybe there's another way we can do this?

AL (ALternatives)

A recent tweet from @nyff made me aware of Boyle's Law for meetings. Want one? Bring a prototype with you. Prototypes are something tangible meeting participants can relate to and tinker with.

Comic describing alternative meeting possibilities including blogs and podcasts

Podcast anyone?

There are other alternatives, too. For meetings on status of projects for example, how about meeting participants blogging or tweeting them? In a typical 60 minute meeting I'm talking maybe two or three minutes tops. That's a long tweet or short blog. Maybe even podcast your bit?

EPILOGUE

Substituting blogs or podcasts (Voxer?) offer at least one other benefit: transparency. They are accessible all and can be designed to encourage feedback.


 

 

Outlook: Cloudy

PROLOGUE

My head hurts. In a good way.

CLOUDS

Challenges in engaging learning, Clark Quinn's latest Learnlets blog post, hit me between the eyes. His post's word cloud made me think design teams need to focus on experiences where learners make and practice.

Learnlets word cloud

Learnlets word cloud: What hits you between the eyes?

Reading it deepened my understanding. Quinn's writing about growing his team's ability to produce engaging learning pragmatically. I interpreted pragmatic as meaning practical, logical, maybe even templatized.

BLUE SKIES
I'm an ideas and theories instructional designer: looking for fresh ways of engaging learners. Practical and logical processes matter but not at the expense of creativity and innovation.
 
INN OVATION
Pragmatic innovation in instructional design means looking up and out, informing our development with what others are doing. We want learners who keep coming back, who talk-up their learning experience after it ends.
 
EPILOGUE
Share your work, too?