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The Importance of Diversity & Inclusion in the Association World

Posted By Administration, Thursday, November 14, 2019

by Arzu Alimohd

ANDI class of 2019This year, I had privilege of participating in the first cohort of Association’s North Diversity & Inclusion Leadership program. As I applied and checked off the requirements for the application just a year before, I did not expect how much it would impact my career, network and skills.

Each quarter, our cohort met for either a half day or full day for leadership training that revolved around a certain skill. This included communicating, presenting and writing, executive presence and conflict. With a cohort of six, each session pulled you out of your comfort zone — you had to participate throughout. This made the experience much more engaging compared to a classroom style lecture with a bigger group. The content and exercises were really valuable, including a DiSC behavioral profile assessment and presenting in front of your cohort with feedback on your skills. What really made the program valuable was the people. From the first day, our cohort became close and started engaging in the content and discussed how it pertained to challenges we have faced in our professional lives. Knowing our diverse group all have a diverse background and stories to tell, it became easy to open up and gain advice from our peers.

This program has not only given me insight on how to implement my leadership skills to the associations I work with, but it also taught me how to incorporate more diversity and inclusion initiatives within association strategic goals. There is not a standard for an association when it comes to diversity and inclusion and every association has a variety of policies and practices it implements. What is known from current research is organizations that are more diverse and inclusive are more profitable and valuable (https://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/organization/our-insights/delivering-through-diversity).

According to the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) Foundation, diversity and inclusion within associations can benefit the organization financially, help generate ideas and give the organization authenticity and an advantage compared to other organizations (Enhancing Diversity and Inclusion in Membership Organizations, page 9). These benefits will only occur if the diversity and inclusion strategy is managed and effectively actionable.  This can be achieved in a variety of ways — whether by a detailed plan, assignments to staff and volunteers, task forces, committees or a combination. The terms “diversity” and “inclusion” are very broad, so organizations must narrow their targeted outcomes – what are some communities that the organization would like to have participate or think would benefit? Does your board represent your member base? How can the association open its door to more communities or partner with other organizations for mutual benefit? Diversity and Inclusion has multiple layers within an organization — board and volunteers, staff, member base, workforce and more.

When associations talk about diversity and inclusion, there is usually an emphasis on diversity more than inclusion (Enhancing Diversity and Inclusion in Membership Organizations, page 15). It is beneficial to look at both diversity and inclusion when determining these goals and to not assume one means the other. They go hand in hand, but increasing a certain area does not mean all may feel included in the organization. It is no surprise that each field is different in its diversity – age, gender, location, etc. — so the organization must look at not only its members, but the field to determine what to focus on.  A common way associations can expand their community is looking at schools or educational programs that train in the profession and partnering with them; this can be determining a student rate for membership or event attendance to expose the community to the organization, creating a student competition, or teaming up with schools to host events. It is also important to think about the organization’s target workforce and look to improve the field along with the organization. A common misconception is because the field is not diverse, the organization does not have to be diverse; but there are ways the association can help diversify its workforce.

It is important to understand that being a truly diverse and including association is not a one-size-fits-all scenario. Each organization must look at its field and determine its priorities. Diversity and inclusion initiatives are also never “one and done.” It is critical to consistently analyze the programs and reevaluate if needed. There is a lot to unpack with the terms diversity and inclusion when it comes to organizations — but be sure to incorporate the values of the organization, define the needs of the community, and then put words into actions and priorities of the association. As D&I initiatives become a more frequent conversation in the association world, a forward-thinking organization looks toward embracing inclusivity and heterogeneity to truly thrive in the future.

Sources: ASAE Foundation - Enhancing Diversity and Inclusion in Membership Associations https://foundation.asaecenter.org/research/diversity-and-inclusion.

2018 McKinsey Report - Delivering through diversity  https://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/organization/our-insights/delivering-through-diversity

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Investing in Your Board as Leaders

Posted By Administration, Tuesday, November 5, 2019
Board room

by Darrin Hubbard

When non-profit association board members are elected, they bring a variety of experience and talent to help further the organization. Some board members have risen through the ranks of volunteer leadership while others may be industry figures who elevate the stature of the organization. What can we as association executives do to not only maximize their contributions, but also provide a rewarding volunteer experience? In my 15 years working with non-profits, I have seen boards coalesce and perform as a high-level team and others finish their term feeling like they did not accomplish as much as they could have.

What is the difference between the two? While no single factor typically determines a board’s success, I will review two common challenges I have seen and some strategies to address them.

Challenge #1: It takes the board too long to get going

For the purpose of this example, let’s assume a board is seated for one year with staggered terms. At the beginning of your board year, you will add new board members; at the end, some will transition off. Even if you maintain a strong core on the board, the dynamics (and likely the performance) change.
What can you do get new board members up to speed faster? Effective board service starts with an orientation. Several models and examples are available online to use with your organization. What I find most effective is an orientation that addresses:

  • Both the history of the organization and the current state of affairs;
  • Key documents like bylaws, policies, procedures, board-staff responsibilities, list of staff with contact information, etc.;
  • Time for you ask key questions of your incoming board: What do you want to accomplish during your term? Why did you decide to run for the board?

I try to schedule at least an hour for my board member orientation to discuss the materials at a high level and allow time for Q&A. Typically, I do this soon after the election, often using a video conferencing platform so it can be recorded and referenced again later.

An effective orientation will allow for a faster start and give you information about individuals’ desires so you can better align their interests with opportunities and understand individual dynamics that are being added to the group.

Challenge #2: Leaders have different talents

When you have an effective leader or someone who was adept at managing the board, their successor may possess a different skill set.

What can you do so the organization does not lose momentum? The governance of many organizations allows for the incoming leadership to be named through succession of the chairs or elected well in advance of the beginning of their term. This is your opportunity to understand and influence the preparedness of your next leader.

Several in-person and virtual trainings are available to help you and your incoming leaders prepare for their term. ASAE has an Exceptional Boards course where the chief elected officer and chief staff officer attend together. BoardSource has an online certificate program. Perhaps there are organizations in your industry that provide training programs specific to that vertical.

Another strategy you can use is including that incoming leader in “business review” meetings with current leaders. These meetings allow the incoming leader to be involved in determining the strategy in ongoing projects, so they have the background and knowledge to bring it to conclusion during their term. Some associations do this in-person for a day, meet at an association event or in a series of meetings as their term approaches.

Start early! Several organizations publish quality thought leadership around board effectiveness. ASAE has its Guide to Volunteer Leadership, Bob Harris has a library of templates and resources available at no cost, BoardSource is a DC-based organization with a focus on effectiveness, to name a few. Check with your local SAE to see what kinds of resources they have. By sharing resources throughout the year with your leaders, you demonstrate your care for their development and also the success of the organization.

Invest in your volunteer leaders today to reap benefits tomorrow. Keep your Board’s momentum strong by developing your volunteer leaders.

What are some things you do to invest in your volunteer leaders?

Tags:  board  board member  leadership 

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Top 3 Reasons Your Conference Needs Mobile

Posted By Administration, Thursday, October 24, 2019

What was once a deluxe conference amenity has become a necessary tool of engagement for successful events. Make your conference mobile and watch as speakers, exhibitors and attendees connect and communicate online. Excite your potential audiences before the event starts, engage with the attendees onsite and evolve throughout the process in response to change. All it takes is an app.

EXCITE YOUR AUDIENCE

In the weeks leading up to your event, a mobile app campaign drives excitement for a future experience. Downloading a conference mobile app provides a tangible teaser for a still far-off event. It gets the conference on the minds and in the hands (literally) of your audience before a meeting convenes. 

Through yet another channel, your brand, your content and your vision can reach your anticipatory audience.

Pro tip: offer an incentive to download the app. Nothing spurs attendees into action faster than the possibility of free stuff.

ENGAGE YOUR ATTENDEES

At any event, you’ve just gathered many of the best minds in your field in one space for a few hours or a few days. Now that they’re here, you need them to engage: with speakers, with exhibitors and with each other!

  • Engage with Speakers: Speakers come prepared as subject-matter experts. Polling and survey features offered through a mobile app can turn a presentation from a one-sided lecture into an interactive event. A mobile app’s ability to collect real-time data from the audience allows speakers to connect with attendees, answer questions and shape their presentations to suit the crowd.
  • Engage with Exhibitors: Companies joining you from far and wide come with expectations to make connections. As their unique swag often demonstrate, sponsors and exhibitors want to get their name in your hands. With a mobile app, it already is. Exhibitor websites and contact information, and digital handouts become instantly available to all attendees. It’s a simple perk for the companies that might just keep them coming back for more.
  • Engage with each other: The universal advantage of in-person events is the networking opportunities inherent. However, as attendees meet new faces in the field, especially at large events, it can be difficult to keep track of these new contacts. Mobile apps provide a fully filled-in contact book and messaging system without the hassle of keeping track of business cards or asking for phone numbers. Encouraging attendees to include their picture with their profile? Even better for those of us not blessed with the gift of face/name memory!

You’ll want an app a mobile app to drive your speakers and attendees to not only to listen but to engage. Empower your audiences to connect through a technology we all know well.

EVOLVE WITH CHANGE

Despite your meeting planner’s best efforts, plans change. As rooms fill up faster than anticipated and speakers call in sick—your mobile app can alleviate the headache of last-minute change.

Rather than disparaging your beautifully branded signage and collateral with handwritten speaker updates and blacked-out sessions, leverage the power of digital technology to make quick updates looks seamless. 

Mobile app push notifications provide a sort of virtual intercom. Communication is immediate and allows your event to evolve as quickly as the outside world.

Conferences are a great opportunity for your organization to showcase the caliber of members and body of knowledge. Mobile applications will only help you improve your conference attendee’s experience and increase the ROI of your event.

Tags:  conference  engagement  event planning  marketing technology  mobile  technology 

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Trends in Conference Management

Posted By Administration, Thursday, October 17, 2019

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Millennials are now the largest generation in the U.S. workforce. As of 2017, there were 56 million Millennials (ages 22-37) working or looking for work — over one-third of the workforce.

Chart displaying growth of millennials as a segment of the workforce

With a growing need for our workforce to be trained and upskilled, conferences can play an important role in employee development.

To get Millennials to attend conferences and join our organizations, we must create more engaging and technologically focused offerings to meet this market segment who are interested in experiences, involvement and engagement.

7 Conference Best Practices

  1. Define and communicate the purpose and mission of the event to prove ROI. Create downloadable “Convince Your Boss” letters.
  2. Personalizing strategies – who are the sessions designed for? Are they interactive to engage attendees? Is there time for connection and conversation? How can attendees connect with other attendee segments and interests onsite?
  3. Purposeful experience – well-being activities, social impact days to give back to the community.
  4. Performances and offsite events at museums or local attractions.
  5. Enhanced conference technology including chatbots, 5G internet, wearable technology, real-time data, creative room design with technology access and charging stations, mobile apps.
  6. Nutrition, mindfulness and wellness: planning for dietary requirements; creating time for “brain breaks” – doodling, coloring, outside walks, Legos.
  7. Engage attendees using gamification – there are many gamers in this segment of the workforce.

Here are some additional resource articles on meeting trends to generate more ideas for your conference.

As our attendees and stakeholders continue to shift, associations must change up our conferences to not only maintain registration numbers but to take them to a whole new level: driving community, engagement and membership. Over one-third of the workforce and those who need education, community and engagement the most are counting on us to drive innovation and offer engaging and memorable experiences using trends and technology.

Tags:  association management  conference  delivering value  engagement  engaging millennials  event planning  member engagement  millennials  tips  trends 

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Creating Memorable Conference Experiences

Posted By Administration, Friday, October 11, 2019

It takes a team effort to make conference experiences memorable for attendees, presenters and exhibitors/sponsors. All parties play an important role in the success and value of attending in person events.

Our Event Management and Marketing & Communications departments formed a Conference Success Team to help our clients improve the conference experience for speakers, sponsors/exhibitors and attendees by creating a resource landing page with all the resources to ensure a positive conference experience before, during and after an event.

The number-one priority is creating relevant content for each audience. So, it’s important to research trends in the profession, conduct a professional development assessment, review membership surveys and past conference surveys to use feedback to improve and enhance the conference experience. Doing it “the way we’ve always done it” won’t cut it.

When you understand what your audience wants, you can then create the framework and tracks that will be the basis for your call for presenters. In addition to contact information, make sure you collect the following session information:

  • Presentation/Session Title (15-word limit)
  • Presentation/Session Description or Presentation (150-word limit)
  • Learning Objectives (require at least three)
  • Select Audience (for example: experience level, society type, organization size)
  • What keywords relate to your presentation topic? This is for search engine optimization as we promote the conference.
  • Provide a two-sentence promotion of your presentation for social media postings.

Getting this information at the beginning will provide the structure for the conference marketing plan.
Exhibitors and sponsors help keep the cost of conferences down for attendees and they also offer a way to make connections on business resources available to attendees. Creating value and ROI for exhibitors and sponsors creates value for the attendees.

The Hotel Electronic Distribution Network Association (HEDNA) offers unique sponsorship opportunities that enhance the value for both the sponsor and the attendee. They also utilize cool technology at their conference such as a full LED wall with movable graphics, a Gobo light with logo sponsors and video. They also have a dedicated HEDNA TV Channel on YouTube that features conference sessions and helps promote future conferences, giving attendees access to the quality content that is delivered at the event.

HEDNA doesn’t have exhibitors but rather offers different types sponsorship opportunities to show unique value to the sponsors while enhancing the conference attendee experience. They have Nooks/Event pods branded with sponsor logos, offering the attendees a soundproof space with white boards, television monitors, videos and allowing for attendee conversations.


Example of nook/event pod with gobo lights (left) and coffee logo (right) at HEDNA LA 2019

Gobo lights make it possible to project sponsor logos on the walls. It’s a simple and effective way to enhance the conference experience at a reasonable price. In addition, they set up a HEDNA café with existing furniture in the hotel and a barista, featuring specialty coffees with the sponsor logo on top of the coffee froth.


Event app gamification example from Eventmobi

The Product Development and Management Association (PDMA) offers a variety of hotel signage and walls/door clings and gobos for conference sponsors as well. This year, PDMA will use gamification in their mobile app to engage attendees.
For the Qualitative Research Consultants Association and Recognition Professionals International, we launched a “Reporter on the Scene” program; members volunteered to fill out an online form for each session and these were developed into blog posts and other content.

At the conferences, we encourage attendees to use hashtags and provide social media tip sheets to get conversations going and keep them going year-round after the conference experience is over. A strong conference and in-person connections foster loyalty and year-round connections.

For attendees, we offer ways to connect with other attendees at the conference in meet-ups, connecting in the mobile app and offering interactive sessions. It’s also important to create time between sessions to allow for conversations, sharing and networking so that learning sticks and new connections are created.

Half of the population are introverts — so it’s important to offer a variety of ways to connect in the manner attendees want. We will share tips on how to get the most out of conferences in a future post.

Mindfulness and wellness activities — both in the workplace and at conferences — are also becoming more popular. Organized walks and runs, yoga or other exercises, healthy snacks and meditation tips are a great way to add new value for attendees that they can take home.

Create memorable conference experiences for your members before, during and after each event!

Tags:  conference  engagement  event planning  member engagement  success  tips 

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MUST-HAVE Event Formulas

Posted By Administration, Thursday, October 3, 2019

Planning an event? Here are some MUST-HAVE event formulas from functional room set-ups to food and beverage formulas that will help you plan the perfect event!

I. FUNCTION ROOM SET-UPS

Reception

  • 9-10 sq. ft. per person (standard bar/hors d'oeuvres)
  • Rule of Thumb:  10 feet

Theatre

  • Less than 60 people = 12-13 sq. ft. per person
  • 60-300 people = 11-12 sq. ft. per person
  • 300+ people = 10-11 sq. ft. per person
  • Rule of Thumb:  10 feet

Theatre Notes:

  • Allow at least 24 inches of space between rows
  • If room is rectangular, set presenter to the long side
  • First row no closer than 2x screen height (2x8 rule)
  • Center section of seating no more than 14 chairs
  • 2 side aisles should be at least 4 feet wide

Schoolroom

  • General = 17-22 sq. ft. per person (18" tables - add 1 sq. ft. per person for 30")
  • Less than 60 people = 22-23 sq. ft. per person
  • 60-300 people = 20-21 sq. ft. per person
  • 300+ people = 17-18 sq. ft. per person
  • Allow 3.5' between rows
  • Rule of Thumb:  20 feet

Conference

  • 2-3 feet of table length per person

Banquet

  • 60 inch = 8-9 people (12.5-13.5 sq. ft. per person)
  • 66 inch = 9-10 people (12.5-13.5 sq. ft. per person)
  • 72 inch = 10-11 people (12.5-13.5 sq. ft. per person)
  • Rule of Thumb:  13 feet

Platforms (a.k.a. Risers)

  • Can be 6, 12, 16, 24 or 32 inches high
  • Usually 4x8 or 6x8 dimensions

General Function Room Set-Up Notes

  • All schoolroom and banquet tables are 30" high
  • Rectangular tables that are 6 or 8 feet long by 30" wide are used for U-Shape, Conference, etc.
  • Rectangular tables that are 6 or 8 feet long by 18" wide are used for schoolroom set-ups

II. CONTRACTS AND REGISTRATION

  • Standard Comp. Room formula = 1 per 50
  • One (1) registration personnel per 100 attendees

III. EXHIBITS

Square Footage

  • Apply 2x rule to determine total sq. ft. needed (two times total square feet of exhibit space)
  • 10x10 = 100 sq. ft. per booth
  • 8x10 = 80 sq. ft. per booth
  • Net square feet (needed for booths) x 2 (for aisles) = total sq. ft. needed for booth and aisles + square footage for ancillary services = total square footage needed

Standard (In-Line) Booth

  • 10' deep by 10' long or 8' deep by 10' long
  • Faces one aisle
  • 8' 3" maximum back wall height

Perimeter (Wall) Booth

  • 10' deep by 10' long or 8' deep by 10' long
  • Faces one aisle
  • 12' maximum back wall height

Peninsula Booth

  • Minimum of two standard booths, usually 4 or more
  • Faces three aisles
  • Usually 16' maximum wall height but depends on show rules

Island Booth

  • Bordered on all four sides by aisles
  • Faces four aisles
  • Usually 16' maximum wall height but depends on show rules
  • Rule of Thumb:  20'x20' (40 sq. ft.)

Exhibit Lighting

  • 70-110 foot candles to light an exhibit hall

Floor Load

  • 300 pounds per sq. ft. on ground floors
  • 50 pounds per sq. ft. on upper floors

IV. BUDGETING

BEU = Break Even Units = Number of Attendees
BEP = Break Even Price = Cost Per Attendee
VC = Variable Costs
TFC = Total Fixed Costs
CF = Contribution Margin (Registration Fee-VC)

ROI = (Gross Revenue − Gross Expenses) ÷ Gross Expenses × 100

BEU = TFC ÷ CF

BEP = (TFC ÷ # of people) + VC Per Person

TFC = # Attendees × $ Per Attendee

** To make a dollar profit, add the desired profit dollar amount to the TFC in the above equation.
*** To make a percentage profit, add $ per attendee to VC and multiply by desired percentage profit

V.  AUDIO VISUAL

Formula One - First row of seats and last row of seats (2x8 rule)

  • No one should be seated closer than 2x screen height
  • No one should be seated farther than 8x screen height

Formula Two - Minimum Ceiling Height

  • Screen height + 4 or 5 feet (minimum distance floor to screen bottom)
  • Rule of Thumb:  5 feet

Formula Three - Screen Width

  • Overhead = 1:1 (8x8, 10x10)
  • Multi Image = 1:3 (6x18, 8x24, 10x30)
  • Slide = 2:3 (6x9, 8x12, 10x15)
  • Video = 3:4 (6x8, 9x12, 10.5x14)

VI.  Americans with Disabilities (ADA) Compliance

General

  • Hallways and Corridors = 36" clearance and occasional spaces for turning/passes

Hotel Rooms

  • At least 2% barrier free; at least 1% of these having roll-in showers
  • Doors and hallways inside rooms have 32" clear openings
  • 32" clearance on at least one side of the bed
  • Sink mounted at least 29" above floor with toe clearance under drainpipe
  • Toilets no higher than 29"

Meeting Rooms

  • Doors have at least 32" clearance

Entrances, Corridors, Stairs

  • Approaches to building entrances at least 5' wide
  • Single door entrances minimum of 32" wide.
  • Double door entrances minimum of 48" wide

Elevators

  • Doors have 32" wide clearance
  • Space no greater than 1.25" between the floor and platform

Restaurants and Lounges

  • Self-service counters no more than 34" high
  • Aisle for buffets 36" wide

Public Restrooms

  • Flush controls no more than 44" from floor

Parking

  • Designated parking space within 200' of building
  • One designated space per 25 total spaces

Ramps, Curbs and Walks

  • Slope of all ramps is 1" of rise to every 12" of run
  • Ramps have 5' wide level landing at top and bottom

ADA Budget

  • 5-7 percent of overall accommodations budget

VII.  FOOD AND BEVERAGE

Continental Breakfast

  • One attendant and separate buffet table per 100 attendees
  • Breakpoint for second buffet = 120 attendees
  • Usually run 30 minutes to one hour

Full Breakfast Buffet

  • Usually runs about one hour

Refreshment Breaks

  • 30 minutes = minimum amount of time
  • One attendant per 100 attendees
  • Morning = 65% Hot/35% Cold
  • Afternoon = 35% Hot/65% Cold
  • 50-75% regular soft drinks
  • 25% diet soft drinks
  • Coffee = 20 cups per gallon
  • Coffee = 60% regular/40% decaf

Luncheons

  • Typical time = 1 hour 15 minutes to serve
  • Schedule 90 minutes

Banquets

  • Two hours per dinner service
  • Three bottles of wine per table of 8 (2 white and 1 red)
  • 1/2 bottle per person + 10% buffer
  • Every 10 bottles white=two red (opposite for red meat)
  • Wine Stewards = 1 for every 5 tables
  • Servers = 1 per 20 people (optimal), 1 per 32 (standard), 1 per 16 for upscale or with wine service
  • Rule of Thumb:  1 per 20

Receptions

  • One attendant per 50 guests
  • One bartender per 100 people if arriving in intervals
  • One bartender per 50 people if arriving as a group
  • Immediately following meeting - food consumption is less
  • Less food/more drinks if reception is prior to dinner

Type of Reception

Type of Eaters

# Hors d'Oeuvres
per person

2 hours or less (dinner following)

Light

3-4 pieces

Moderate

5-7 pieces

Heavy

8+ pieces

2 hours or less (no dinner)

Light

6-8 pieces

Moderate

10-12 pieces

Heavy

12+ pieces

2-3 hours
(no dinner)

Light

8-10 pieces

Moderate

10-12 pieces

Heavy

16+ pieces

Beverages

  • 21-25 drinks per bottle of liquor
  • 32 ounces to a quart
  • 50/50 soft/hard liquor consumption
  • Wine consumption = 3 glasses during a 2 hour reception
  • Women consume more wine than liquor
  • Cash bar will consume less than host bar
  • Cash Bar - before lunch - 30% will have 1 drink
  • Cash Bar - after meeting - 50% will stay and have 1.5 drinks (1 hour reception)
  • Hosted Bar - Cocktail Hour - 80% will stay and have 2-2.5 drinks in 1 hour
  • Hosted Bar - Cocktail Hour - 80% will stay and have 3-3.5 drinks in 1 1/2 hours

Source: Pam Soules, CMP Director of Events, Mid-States Distributing

Tags:  association management  conference  event planning  success  tips 

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Writing Successful Learning Objectives

Posted By Administration, Thursday, September 26, 2019

Writing Successful Learning Objectives

Learning objectives are a best practice in training that, in their most basic form, are a statement of what learners should be able to accomplish by the end of a learning event. Additionally, they are a way for the presenter to clearly and transparently define the goals of the training. Creating no more than three to four specific learning objectives will allow the learner to self reflect throughout the learning event on his or her progress toward mastering the defined critical information.

In order to plan and implement an effective training program for professionals, it is important to understand and address the Principles of Adult Learning. Malcom Knowles’ research on the distinct characteristics of adult learners began in the 1950's and is the basis for the majority of adult learning theories. Adult learners have unique characteristics, as identified by Knowles, including that they are goal-oriented look for relevancy in their learning. Stating clear learning objectives for a training helps the learner identify the goals and desired outcomes of the training.

 

When constructing a learning objective, there are two distinct parts: the action verb and the performance standard. The action verb provides clear measures of mastery of demonstrable learning outcomes. Some examples of strong action verbs include: define, contrast, write, explain and evaluate. The action verb also reflects the rigor of the learning objective. Bloom’s Taxonomy, created in 1956 to encourage higher-level thinking, is an effective tool for trainers to ensure that they are creating rigorous learning objectives.

 

The bottom level of the taxonomy, known as the “knowledge” domain, represents low-level learning and includes action verbs including recall, define, recognize and list. As you move up the levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy, the level of thinking required increases. Choosing action verbs in the different levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy will help classify the cognitive level of learning to both the presenter and the learner.

The second part of creating a learning objective is determining the performance standard. A performance standard is the measure by which learners will demonstrate mastery. There are three types of learning objectives: cognitive, psychomotor and effective. Cognitive learning objectives aim to increase the participants’ general understanding of concepts and processes. Psychomotor learning objectives seek to determine whether a learner can accurately complete a task or demonstrate a skill. Finally, an effective objective is designed to influence attitudes and outlooks. Identifying the type of learning objective will assist the presenter in choosing the appropriate performance standard, instructional strategies and assessment tool, if applicable.

 

A poor example of a learning objective is, “Participants will be exposed to information about new laws passed in 2016 that impact public accountants.” The verb “exposed” does not indicate any measurable action for the learner to demonstrate mastery of the learning objective.

A good example of a learning objective is, “By the end of this training, learners will be able to identify the changes in the updated resuscitation guidelines.” The action verb of this objective is “identify” and the performance is pinpointing the changes in the updated resuscitation guidelines. The time frame noted at the beginning of the objective tells the learner when this learning goal should be met.

 

Learning objectives should be used in all effective learning events. Constructing a learning objective that has both an action verb and a performance standard will help learners identify the key information as well as the goals of the training. Encouraging trainers to promote their learning objectives will result in participants who are prepared to engage with the desired outcomes of the training.

Tags:  learning objectives  professional development 

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Tips for Subject Matter Experts

Posted By Administration, Tuesday, September 24, 2019
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Speaker Checklist for Effective Presentations

Posted By Administration, Thursday, September 12, 2019
Untitled Document

Speaker Checklist for Effective Presentations




Engagement

  • Avoid starting the presentation stating, “Hi my name is… Today I’ll be talking about…”
  • Engage the learning at the beginning of the training.
    • Pose a question
    • Share a story: historical, personal, imaginative
    • Use an image: picture, video, comic
  • Share the “why” or purpose of the training; How will it benefit the learner?
  • Create at least one opportunity for learner collaboration throughout the training:
    • Turn and Talk: Pose a question and have partners share their answers
    • Participants respond on a shared document or in a chat box
    • Learners “teach back” the new information to each other
    • Groups work together to respond to specific scenarios
    • Live poll to collect group data
  • Allocate time for Q&A.

Powerpoint

  • Avoid using text only and long paragraphs in your slides.
  • Utilize images that support your key points.
  • Ensure the font, colors and size of the text can be read from the back of a room.
  • Spell check and proof-read slides.

Presentation Tips

  • Avoid reading the slides.
  • Practice slow, clear delivery.
  • Be aware of your nonverbal communication.
    • Create eye contact with audience
    • Positive tone
    • Stand and move around the room, if possible
    • Read the room for questions or confusion
  • Do not include commercial sales within your presentation.
  • Relax, breathe and have fun!

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The Science of Learning: Delivering Effective Training

Posted By Administration, Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Research has found that the brain’s ability to retain information decreases over time exponentially, often referred to as Ebbinghaus’ Forgetting Curve. After just a couple days, retention of new information can drop to around 40%. Utilizing instructional best practices including increasing interactivity and ensuring the training is relevant will help combat the forgetting curve. Understanding how the human brain processes information and how people learn will assist with…

Boredom inhibits learning

Boredom Inhibits Learning

  • Our brains are trained to pay attention to new and unusual inputs
  • Have you incorporated engagement strategies?
  • Is your instruction broken up into manageable chunks?
  • Collaboration – Get your audience involved; interactive experience is more memorable than passive
  • Have you “hooked” your audience with an engaging opening?


Short-Term Memories Are Temporary

Short-Term Memories Are Temporary

  • Learning must be repeated and revisited to be moved into long-term memory
  • Add checks for understanding to gauge understanding
  • Make connections between concepts to repeat learning in multiple scenarios


Learner driven

Learner-Driven

  • Ensures learning is applicable
  • Ownership over the learning and output
  • Active role in learning
  • Need to see relevance in learning as it is no longer required


Visuals are critical

Visuals are Critical

  • 80-90% of the information our brain processes comes in through our eyes
  • It takes about ¼ second for the brain to process and attach meaning to a symbol
  • The brain is capable of absorbing 36,000 images every minute
  • In contrast, it takes an average of 6 seconds to read 20-25 words.
  • One study found that a presentation that was delivered with visual aids was 43% more effective at getting people to take action than the same presentation was delivered without visuals.


Struggle is good

Struggle is Good

  • Creating challenge in learning requires the learner to do the mental heavy lifting.
  • Mistakes can be the most valuable teacher


Learning needs to be immediately relevant

Learning Needs to be Immediately Relevant

  • What is the added value and results for me?
  • Humans process hundreds of thousands of sensory inputs daily. In order to trigger the brain that it is valuable and should be retained, the information should be relevant and applicable. This is why learning objectives should be utilized.



Resources

https://www.growthengineering.co.uk/what-is-the-forgetting-curve/

https://www.td.org/insights/brain-rules-what-science-says-about-how-we-learn

https://trainingindustry.com/articles/content-development/how-the-brain-learns/

  1. Thorpe, S., Fize, D. & Marlot, C. (1996). Speed of processing in the human visual system, Nature, Vol 381.

https://prezi.com/the-science/

Learning and Leading with Habits of the Mind
Arthur l. Costa and Bena Kallick, Editors. 2008
https://docs.wixstatic.com/ugd/134369_e28dfbe4dc4643cfb9b5c44bf5f51574.pdf

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