Last week I had the good fortune to be invited to Berlin to talk at the excellent Online Educa conference.
I started by speaking at the pre-conference event run by online language and communications experts Speexx (photo above), followed the next day by facilitating a world cafe on the skills needed by L&D professionals in the 21st Century.
Cafes are great fun – all about conversation rather than speaker delivery, and I was delighted to have a great group to work with. I have also have the privilege of having attended cafes in the past run by master facilitator David Gurteen.
David’s unassuming style adds to the effectiveness of his cafes; participants discuss at tables, make notes on a shared document, then circulate to other tables and continue the discussion. The result is valuable learning and reflection at each table.
In this case I decided to formally collect the thoughts of the delegates – a multi-cultural, multi-country, multi-lingual group of about 35 who came up with excellent suggestions to two questions over the course of an hour (following my 10 minute scene-setting). This blog is my opportunity to repay them for their creativity by publishing the results of the cafe.
Question 1: What skills does L&D need to succeed in the 21st Century?
In my role as chair of the Learning and Performance Institute this has been a long standing interest of mine.
Here, unedited, are the answers the group came up with, in bold if a response was given more than once:
Embrace new technologies and methods
Be lifelong learning
Communications / e-communications
Value/Proof / $ / Results
Professional / management skills
Facilitating collective intelligence
From knowledge to doing
Personalization, Localization, Globalization
This is a combination of skills and values, with some detailed technical skills and some very high-level skills. There was considerable consensus over this set of skills, even though the discussion was harder and more intense when I asked the tables – after initially brain storming all skills – to choose the three they thought most important.
The second question was about resources: How will L&D go about building these skills? There was a wide range of answers. Here they are, again without any editing (I’ll add links later):
Facebook book groups
LinkedIn influencers list
Twitter – Jane Hart
Ted Talks (put it on your LMS)
Round table discussions
Websites – elearning
Others who are successful
People thinkings who are good
What they do
Leveraging whoever – blogs, social, media, technology
Networking – conferences, LinkedIn
Seek out knowledge, mapping
Constantly find people who know things and use them
Masie Learning 2013 30 under 30 best resources and website
Knowledge Management Systems
What a list!
My thanks to everyone for sharing their thoughts.
This comprehensive list generates in me one immediate reaction: if this is what 35 people can generate in 15 minutes’ discussion, what else can we produce when we really share?
(It’s also a good argument for more cafe sessions at conferences.)
Saturday 14 December: Having created this post over the past few days of travelling, writing and speaking, I’m glad to get it up, but I’m aware there it’s of limited use without any links. I’ll add those next week when I have time.
In my role as chair of the LPI (Learning and Performance Institute) I have collected many links and resources around the professional development of L&D. Here are a few I recommend visiting:
- The LPI Capability Map of L&D Skills
- Workplace Learning Professionals who blog and/or tweet (Jane Hart)
- David Gurteen’s Knowledge Management site
- Jane Hart’s 100 tools for learning
- Which blogs to read in L&D? (this blog)
- What books to read in L&D? (this blog)
- 7 steps to good facilitation (this blog)