Jan 13, 2010

My take on 2010

Now it's my turn to make some predictions on this new year. I guess my main observation is this one: there is not one dominant trend for this year. Everything that was, will continue.

Technology
There are new emerging ways to interact with computer systems, and they are targeted for a breakthrough this year. I'm thinking off Microsoft's project Natal, and the sixth sense video on TED. Touching screens will become more commonplace, on traditional computers and all new toys like tablets. Speaking of toys: Google released one, and Apple might soon. Once again, this is the year that mobile learning is supposed to have a breakthrough. for the software part of technology, the bet is clear. if you still twitter is cooled this year, you will have missed the wave.

Integration
Within corporations learning and development and is encapsulates it evermore within the broader spectrum of talent management. That trend will continue in process, in platforms, and in departmental structures.

Productivity
This one never goes away: doing more with less. Crisis or no crisis, there will always be pressure on the learning folks to achieve more [and measurable] results in less time, which has budget, and less people. Don't just think of doing the same stings better, but doing other things. The way retrained 10 years ago will never return.

Multi-generations
The debate we had a few years ago about a new generation of learners entering the workforce, was not an accurate one. I'm not contributing to the big question whether learning styles in new generations really exists, and ig generations are defined by age. Research is not conclusive on that. What we will need to deal with in corporations is developing and transferring skills between at least four generations of workers, which may because of their history have different expectations and/or styles. So far boat education and training have mainly dealt with one dominant generation at the time. This simplified life is over, at least for the corporate world. It is not about new generations, it's about accommodating multiple generations, also in your training programs. my hope is that our solution will not be like the one we invent it to accommodate people with all kinds of disabilities for learning. Because of cost reasons, we don't often go for a one-size-fits-all, boring, least common denominator approach. I would hope that we find ways to generate a set of learning activities on the same topic, where people with different preferences and backgrounds will all find the learning they deserve.

And now for the big theme
So there is no single dominant theme. Big deal. Let's invent one. I declared this to be my theme for learning in 2010: learning for a better world. We tend to focus a lot on all the things that are wrong with learning or not adjusted to the current times anymore. But on a positive spin, learning has made a hell of a lot of difference over the years. We did fulfil on our potential to unlock talent and give it access to education and opportunity to florish. Not for all (yet), but for many more than ever before. We did achieve productivty gains in the learning administration and delivery. We did apply new technology and new insights for the better. I like to think that learning in all its forms does make a difference for the better in this world. So let's focus on that. Let us think about all the great things we have achieved, while also carefully considering where we might have done better, and should do so in the future. Learning makes the world a better place. Let us make that the theme of this year. It immediatly answers the ever heard cry for the results and impact of our profession.

PS Made with dictation software, so sorry for all the odd words I didn't spot before I pushed the publish button.

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