Social Learning = Organically Sloppy. How business really gets done.

Some of the best knowledge transfer, training and development that sticks and business innovation leading to opportunity I’ve ever seen has been organic and sloppy.

It’s been in non-structured, non-hierarchical yet highly interactive and collaborative social settings: workplace lunchrooms, hallways, parking lots, supply closets, cubicles, company picnics, children’s school functions and sporting events, etc., etc.

And so on.

Call it social learning. Now add social media services and throw in some sidebar conference meetings and/or chats on the expo floor.

And you see how business really gets done.

I’m at the HR Technology Conference and Exposition in Chicago this week and yesterday attended session called Social Learning.

The moderator was Jeanne Meister, co-author of The 2020 Workplace: How Innovative Companies Attract, Develop & Keep Tomorrow’s Employees Today, and the panelists included:

  • Robert Campbell (VP & CLO, Cerner Corporation)
  • Don McLaughlin (CLO, Cisco)
  • Laurence Smith (VP, Global L&D, LG Electronics)
  • Susan Steele (National TD Director, Deloitte)

It was fascinating to hear how these organizations have embraced social media tools and incorporated them as communication tools like:

  • Blogging
  • Microblogging
  • Video blogging
  • Wikis

In fact, Deloitte managers communicate via internal blogs more than e-mail these days.

Amen to that. I despise e-mail (although I understand it’s still a necessary “evil” communications tool).

Although there was much discussion around how social media has flattened the business world and changed the way we communicate with one another — what I didn’t hear, at least explicitly, was how we learn to transform ourselves and grow the business.

Yes, it was discussed how Twitter-like streaming threads (Yammer) have germinated then generated new development ideas and solutions to other business problems, but I wanted to hear more about how social learning is transforming global experiential learning and “live” real-time scenario-based training that then lead to things that stick, new ideas and innovative business development projects.

Because you know it is. With Cisco’s video conferencing technology alone you know it is.

Social learning welcomes impromptu scenario-based training and development opportunities.

Organically sloppy, the way we really learn to transform ourselves and the business.

Be better and brighter.


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