Many eLearning principles are also highly effective when applied to the marketing front, especially when it comes to customer loyalty. While most think of customer loyalty as the percentage of wallet share you earn in any given customer’s pocket, today’s social landscape has altered what that loyalty really means. It’s not only about spend, but word-of-mouth advertising, engagement rates, and how likely a customer is to recommend you to others.
According to a study by ReportsnReports, wearable tech will account for nearly 30 billion in revenue over the next five years. At first glance, nanolearning delivered on wearable tech seems like a natural progression as an elearning solution. But, the problem lies in the fact that too often, content is adapted to be delivered on tiny tech that works just as well and often better via other delivery methods.
There’s nothing quite like attending a well-organized, engaging, and high-energy conference. Whether it’s to improve your sales tactics or it’s all about your industry, you leave feeling amped and energetic; ready to apply your new knowledge to your role–and eventually take over the world.
Anyone who’s ever had a brusque interaction with their physician can tell you that some skills just can be taught. And really, who can blame a doctor who has a full docket of patients at the ready? Top medical institutions like the Cleveland Clinic are realizing, however, that the importance of soft skills like communication and interpersonal skills are crucial to the success of the hospital or patient care facility. The Cleveland Clinic has found that by focusing on the patient experience, malpractice litigation decreases, patient retention increases, better health outcomes, along with a wide array of other positive outcomes.
You may not realize it, but we have a natural defense to avoid information overload. Imagine that someone is giving you a phone number. It’s almost universal: They will give you the first three numbers first (8-6-7) before giving you the last four numbers (5-3-0-9). Why do humans almost naturally default to this method of “chunking” information?
Sales reps; casino workers; hospitality employees: If there’s one common thread between these professions, it’s an almost chronic lack of time. That’s because these unconventional employees are constantly in motion, whether it’s closing the deal or offering stellar customer service. Still, these movers and shakers often require training, even if they don’t have the time to sit through something in a conference room.
What is Microlearning?
Microlearning (also spelled ‘micro learning’) is a teaching style that involves short bursts of highly engaging and interactive information, delivered to the the learner at his request. The learner is in full control of his education, and decides what, when and how much he is learning.
Think about where you get most of your facts and food for thought nowadays. More likely than not, it’s not from the latest novel you’re reading, or long form article you’ve read, but something short and snappy you saw on your Facebook feed, Tumblr, or other social media channel. This is microlearning (and yes it means that the information you read on Twitter can be considered learning!) – bites of information – but we’ll explain more in a moment. You’re here because you care about learning, especially as it relates to the professional realm.
When it comes to learning, employees want what they want when they want it.
Tedious training sessions, forced instruction and epic employee manuals are outdated teaching tools, and are quickly becoming replaced by the likes of entertaining micro-content providers such as Facebook, Twitter and Google. Long live microlearning.
Not that it hasn’t been around for the last several decades, albeit under the guise of “reusable learning objects,” “minilearning,” “microcourses,” “nanolearning,” and our favorite, “knowledge nuggets.”
As buzzwords and jargon are prevalent in the elearning industry, it’s worth taking a moment to define the two industry terms we’re addressing in this post: microlearning and blended learning. Microlearning is a teaching style in which the learner requests and controls the delivery of short bursts of information. Traditionally, microlearning has primarily been used as part of a more developed blended learning course, whereas blended learning is typically composed of several microlearning modules bundled together to achieve a pre-arranged training goal. Historically, blended learning has been the elearning industry’s stock in trade, defined by its flexibility and ease of use.
Microlearning, on the other hand, has long been a concept in search of the right technology. Fortunately, modern society’s ability to search, tag, link and instantly share information has caught up to its simple genius: Allow the employee to ask for information when they want it, how they want it.
Two real-world examples of our society’s newfound appreciation for microlearning can be seen in the popular Google Helpouts and TED-Ed. Both of which serve as instant educational tools to anyone requiring more information about Google products (Google Helpouts) or the world in general (TED-Ed).
The same passion for learning that sparked the growth of these two social teaching tools can be applied to corporate training and employee growth as well. We are currently experiencing a shift in technology and instructional design in which forward-thinking businesses – local and global – can utilize microlearning in addition to traditional blended learning courses in the workforce.
For most corporate training departments, offering access to microlearning modules is the next natural step in workforce training. A majority of companies have long enjoyed the convenience and lower cost that elearning brings to staff training and development. While traditional interactive blended learning courses are preferred, many forward thinking companies have developed a nontraditional “flipped classroom” method in which employees are responsible for learning concepts on their own and then practicing or qualifying that knowledge in organized training sessions.
Integrating microlearning into corporate elearning programs is the next evolutionary step in workplace training and development. Modules can be easily created to educate staff in all aspects of brand culture, from hiring and development to on-going training and general communication. The best part is the convenience. Microlearning is fast, mobile and can be accessed from laptops, smart phones, tablets, and desktops as schedules permit.
Consider microlearning as an ideal solution for “just in time” learning situations. For example, an HR professional about to conduct an interview can access the company learning management system and search for instruction modules using the key word “Interviewing.” After watching a couple of informative video clips they may then be prompted to click on links to best practice articles or case studies to educate themselves further on the subject. When they feel ready, they can access a compliance course on interviewing dos and don’ts complete with an assessment quiz to ensure competency in the subject. Research completed, they are now prepared to conduct an interview that meets company standards.