In a global marketplace, strategic thinking is a must. One of the business models I promote is that an organization is most profitable when it empowers people to use technology to its fullest potential. Reinforce this with proper metrics and process improvements, and the model becomes economical and self-sustaining.
Technology, education, and multimedia are passions of mine. Independently, they are powerful. Combined, their power is unparalleled. Maintaining perspective is important, too. Technology is not an end unto itself. It must be made to bend to the needs of people, not vice versa. Consequently, technology is as much about people as it is about hardware and software. Likewise, education has as much to do with performance and knowledge management as it has to do with lectures and tests.
In every organization there are one or two people to whom everyone turns for help. One objective of mine is to lift everyone to that level of expertise. A key to achieving this goal is to contextualize training. Success is achieved when an employee can explain the quality of a new technology based upon how it improves his or her job. One of the best ways to build context into training is to ask the sponsor four straightforward questions:
Because business goals remain paramount, simple solutions are usually the best solutions. Executives generally focus on results. While they may agree that profitability comes through superior execution, rarely do they start from the assumption that training is the answer. For a training department to succeed, the economics must be so compelling that they can be calculated on the back of an envelope. Managed correctly, digital video, multimedia, and the web may be leveraged to produce targeted materials that economically solve business needs and empower people to use technology to its fullest potential.