Making Training More Effective – Feedback Direct from SkillStore Users

light_bulb.jpgWhen we first designed the SkillStore mobile app, we knew that traditional methods – books, videos and online courses, or instructor-led workshops – weren’t holding learner’s attention. 

Hence, we aimed to offer a paradigm shift in training that:

  • Embraces mobile-first design so learners have easy access to content
  • Focuses on video as a primary learning modality that distributes learning through visual cues
  • Enables bite-sized learning in keeping with learner’s normal patterns of using technology
  • Provides opportunities for feedback and improvement through repeated practice
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Think Simple

think_simpleEvery year, Siegel + Gale surveys thousands of consumers worldwide and publishes their reports in a Global Brand Simplicity Index. As a global branding agency, Siegel + Gale provide brand experience and design services to companies through the lens of simplicity.

A few key highlights of the 2014 report include:

  • Simplicity pays: Customers are willing to pay more for a simpler experience.
  • Simplicity gets shared: 70 percent of consumers are more likely to recommend a brand because it’s simple.
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The Power of Peer Assessment for Communication Skills Training

Peer Assessment at “Planet Scale” – the Problem

Daphne Koller had a problem. As part of the Stanford University Computer Science Department, she had been teaching various aspects of computer science to a small number of very talented students for over 15 years. Now she was taking a leap into the unknown, as one of the pioneers in the MOOC (massive open online course) movement that is coursing through the Higher Education establishment. Instead of teaching, say 50 Stanford undergraduates in a course relying primarily on face-to-face instruction, she was about to teach a course to tens of thousands of students across the globe – where she had no idea how much knowledge each student came into the course with.

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A Paradigm Shift in Interpersonal Skills Training

In earlier posts, I described why so much of management training is wasted: despite the broad recognition of the importance of interpersonal skills and the tens of billions of dollars spent every year to build these skills, only one out of every 10 managers feels proficient at these skills. I also discussed how learning science can help, and how Next-Gen SaaS offers us a way out.

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Applying Gestalt Theory to Transform Interpersonal Skills Training

Derived from the German theory of the same name, the word “Gestalt” is often used to signify a whole that is more than (or different from) the sum of its parts.

For instance, when you perceive the geometric shapes below as individual parts…

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Sales Training & Leadership Training – Ripe for Disruption?

We at SkillStore have been convinced for a few years that sales training and leadership training is ripe for disruptive innovation – so much so that we left our roles as the leaders of Mount Saint Mary’s University Online (an innovative non-profit online college funded by Bill Gates and Reed Hastings, among others) last year to start SkillStore, to help companies build interpersonal skills for professional success. So it felt good to watch Mary Meeker’s 20th annual Internet Trends report at the Code conference, which validated several of our core beliefs. As you probably know, Mary is a longtime Internet analyst and current partner at prominent VC firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (who was, among other accolades, named “one of the ten smartest people in tech” by Fortune magazine in 2010). Her annual report on the state of the Internet – all 196 slides of it – covers a very wide range of topics and is often regarded as the definitive report on the “state of the Internet and mobile computing”.

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