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Deep smarts

I read an interesting post, "College matters... sometimes", on headrush from Kathy that looks at why kids go to college. Her post generated several good comments about HR and the way businesses view certificates or diplomas to determine advancement. Go read it right now, I'll wait. Mind boggling huh! You gotta ask yourself, how many of us really know how or what to learn that will serve our interests (think Maslow's hierarchy of needs) today and into the future?

enterprise social software
Let's take a look what's happening in business and business development.

Talent:a breed apart ? from management-issues

"The Institute of Management, meanwhile, defines talent management as a means of identifying, releasing, and guiding untapped potential in people. This implies not only being able to manage those bright high flyers that are hungry for success, but also adopting a flexible and developmental approach to all members of staff.

But talent management is more than just another HR process. It requires a holistic and integrated approach [part of business development management], because in spite of the idea that talent is a natural ability, left undeveloped, it could remain dormant and hidden forever.

Many organizations are only really worried about retaining and developing their top talent and 'hi-pos'."

"There are only three things that can bring competitive advantage to a company," says Bones. "Its brand, the technology it uses to produce a patented product – which is becoming increasingly rare these days - and its people.

"It is the people who work for you and no one else who leverage the strengths of your brand and your technology to achieve that competitive advantage."

Things were slower then compared to today.

I have a comp-sci degree from a long time ago, back when there were no IT departments. We had DP, as in data processing with mainframes and dumb terminals. We had few if any application software packages to choose from. In most cases, which is almost unheard of these days, we developed everything in-house without any real development tools. From financial and marketing to payroll and HR systems. As we implemented and then integrated these systems, I got a deep appreciation of systems thinking, which helped me to see the big picture in almost every area of my life, hence the cliche - zoom-out. One of my points here is that we all wanted to learn: users, techies, management, everybody was curious about everything.

Kathy, "Maybe there should be third-party "learning designers..."

who you pay to plan and choose the best options and put together a perfectly tailored custom program from a variety of learning vendors (instead of throwing all your learning eggs into one school basket) that still includes some general education, but in the way that makes the most sense for that particular student, and uses both online, distance, and *some* face-to-face learning."

From Chief Learning Office, Industry News - Bersin Study Analyzes Corporate Learning organizations

"The study, which is based on interviews with learning executives and detailed surveys from 350 global companies, was sponsored by Peoplesoft, Wells Fargo, Plateau and Saba."

This research has helped us identify clear commonalities among high-performing training organizations, said Josh Bersin, president of Bersin & Associates. These critical factors are important to any organization committed to employee training and skills development because they can help maximize investments in time, resources, and expertise.

Examples of factors that promote effectiveness and efficiency of corporate training include:

  • Centralized budget management,
  • The most effective organizations invest in e-learning and related technologies in order to increase reach, range, and impact--not to reduce costs.
  • Organizations that spend the time and money implementing an enterprise-wide LMS have much higher effectiveness and efficiency.
  • Enterprise LMSs provide detailed data on the activity, efficiency, utilization, and impact of training investments - providing the foundation for solid decision making.

On the flip side, examples of factors that can negatively impact a training organization include:

  • Centralized training organizations that are inadequately staffed and budgeted not only fail in meeting the needs of business units but often open the door to unauthorized and uncontrolled training-related spending by business units.
  • A lack of focus on the development of enterprise-wide standards and templates for training significantly weakens a training organization.
  • A failure to focus on a measurement strategy impedes decision making."

So with all the new social network software platforms and community software solutions on the market for connectedness, why aren't businesses, schools, govs, and individuals using them to promote a better way of teaching and learning?