Training OR Learning

learning Jul 26, 2016

Is the amount and complexity of knowledge you need to do your job increasing?

What's the learning curve like for someone newly hired?

Are you constantly needing to learn new information, skills and develop new capabilities so we do our work well?

Here's the deal. I’ve conducted training events for some 20 years. Most often the topics are determined by management, they're formal and structured as well as limited to very specific content. In my experience the content is often too much and gets crammed into the time allowed which is seldom enough for actual learning to happen. How often has this happened to you?

Lately I've been giving this a lot more thought while designing a process for learning that attempts to meet the needs of a diverse group of people from those new to their field to the ones that've been around awhile.

In looking at  models for attempting this -- I've had to ask some hard questions about what is possible (at least what I think is possible). I've come to believe it can't be done from a traditional training model. There just isn't enough time or money to make it so.  

Given that, I shifted into thinking from the learners perspective, considering first how I learn and talking with others about their experience too. Then I did some research to see how others were thinking about it. I came up with a comparison to help guide my own work and thought you might have some ideas too. Here's what I came up with. 

What do you think? Where do you see promise (or challenges) with these perspectives? What would you add? Challenge?
Given your experience, what advice, insight or inquiry do you have?


Primary Sources: 
--Informal Learning by Jay Cross
--Stephen Gill's guest blog post at 
--Dreaming Weaving Learning at