Wednesday, 29 December 2010

A Twitter Quiz Experiment

Today I got an idea that I would like to try out. I have no idea if it's been done before. But nevertheless I want to give it a try.
I will host a small quiz via Twitter, the reason for this are two. First of all I am a huge quiz fan. I like to watch quiz shows on TV, and set me up with a game of Trivial Pursuit and I will be quite happy for a while. Here is my idea how a quiz on Twitter would work:

1. I post a question using a hashtag (#mattiasquiz for example).
2. The participants responds to me with a Direct Message.
3. The participant who leaves the first correct answer gets a point.
4. First to five points win.

Will this be possible? I think so, the only real issue I see is how to get the questions out so that all participants are aware of a new question being posted. Maybe I could post one question each hour? Is there a way to set that up so that the tweet with a question is sent at a specific time?

Do you see other problems with this setup? Please leave a comment.

I have advertised this experiment today on Twitter and two bold gentlemen have responded that they want to participate  (@CraigTaylor74 and @kstenqvist). But I would like to have a few more to join us. If you are interested don't hesitate, send me a tweet or leave a comment here and you are more than welcome to join us.

Wednesday, 22 December 2010

5 reasons for using Twitter (and 1 why you shouldn't use it)

The theme of the week seems to be twitter. I have during the last week discussed twitter with a number of people, explaining why I find it so useful. Then the latest #lrnchat session was about twitter and lastly I read the fourth chapter in the great book "New Social Learning" about microsharing.

When I finally got to sit down and reflect a bit I decided to write a post on this theme. This has been done thousands of times before, but never by me. I try to sharpen my arguments for using twitter as I am trying hard to get me colleagues to start using it. So here is my list:

Monday, 20 December 2010

My thoughts on application trainings

During my career I have a number of times been asked to help out with design of different IT-application trainings. Both from a pure design perspective but also as a trainer. Below I will describe three typical scenarios that I have seen over and over again, I also provide some simple yet effective ways to solve these issues. The three scenarios are:

  • Content Overload
  • Authenticity
  • Follow the Leader

Thursday, 9 December 2010

My kids toys - A treasure box for PowerPoint presentations

A post on what I discovered while taking care of my sick kid for a couple of days and how it has taken my PowerPoint presentations to a new dimension. Good or not, judge yourselves, at least I like them.

You got to admit, those LEGO minifigures are cool!

Sunday, 5 December 2010

Nobel Prize in Learning

This Friday the Nobel Prize ceremony will be held for the 109th time (if I did my math correctly). In the spirit of this I thought it would be interesting to see who would receive the award if Learning was one of the disciplines that was awarded.

So who would you like to nominate for the Nobel Prize in Learning 2010? 

According to the statutes of the Nobel Prize it should be given to those who confer the "greatest benefit on mankind" (source: Wikipedia). 

UPDATE: I think maybe the question was too hard as there are so many to select from. In the original will it was stated that the prize should be given to those who, during the preceding year, shall have conferred the greatest benefit on mankind. Therefore you only have to nominate someone that, during the preceding year has done something amazing in the field of learning.

Nominate your candidate in the comments field and by Friday we should hopefully have a winner.

Thanks for participating!


Being social in a multilingual world

One of the reasons for writing this post is that I have for some time now been struggling with translating and localizing e-learning content. It is a process which demands a lot of resources, time and money. And once you are done you cannot be sure of the quality of the translated material since neither I nor the SME's that have quality secured the English master can understand the languages the content has been translated to.

At first I thought of writing this post in my mother tongue, Swedish, just to make my point. But then I realized that no one would probably read it. Which is exactly my point of this post. If you can't understand the language in which something is communicated you are shut out of the communication. Who knows how many great messages are out there written in languages that I, or you, don't understand.

I will give you an example.

Thursday, 2 December 2010

A Swedish smorgasbord of Learning

In a lot of discussions regarding Learning today the main subject is the use of Social Media for Learning and moving from Push to Pull. I am a strong advocate for this but at the same time I see that this change might take a while and that small and careful steps might be necessary to reach my goal.

What I believe is the most important shift in this is to move the power from the top to the bottom. Let the Learners be in charge of  their own Learning. But as said earlier, I think the change won't come in the form of a big fireworks bang but more in the form of a number of fire crackers that eventually builds up to the most magnificent fireworks you have ever seen.

One way to let the Learners take control of their learning is to present them with what I refer to as a

Smorgasbord of Learning.

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Social Learning, Simulations and Networking

Today I was at Tetra Pak in Lund, Sweden for a network meeting with Swedish Learning Association (in Swedish). The theme of this meeting was simulations but we also got a chance to talk Social Learning for a while. Malmö University has published a report on how Swedish companies are working with new tools for learning. To summarise it very shortly, it doesn't look very good, at least if you have the same interest in Social Learning as I have. After the presentation of the report was presented we had the chance to discuss our views on Social Learning and the available tools.

I would say that 1/3 of the participants were for SoMe for learning and 2/3 were against. And I am so glad I have read the book "New Social Learning" by Tony Bingham and Marcia Conner, because now I have the arguments needed to discuss with those who oppose the change (that I believe will come no matter how hard they fight it). In the very first chapter in the book Tony and Marcia mention seven things that often is said by opponents. After ten minutes of discussion I heard and responded to five of these:

  • People will say inappropriate things - check
  • People will post incorrect information - check
  • Our people need training, not socializing - check
  • This can't be goverened - check
  • This can't be measured - check

 This means that I have already got ROI on this book. If you, like me, are interested in SoMe and learning it's a must-read.

The thing that really scared me was that the people at this network meeting are all working in the L&D field and I expected them to be more visionary than they actually were. I think it is one thing to hear these arguments for people not working with L&D since they don't have the knowledge nor interest on learning matters.

After the discussion we were shown two different simulations, one sales simulation (from Ericsson) and one Change Management simulation called EIS (not sure who is actually behind it) that for example we at IKEA uses.

The Change Management simulation is very interesting and I have participated in a Change Management training were this simulation was used as a base for the training.

The Sales simulation was a bit tricky to understand, probably because I am not a sales person at all. But it was impressing never the less. The amount of background data used in the simulation was astonishing.

So what is my view on simulations? I think they can serve a purpose when done in the right context and with the right facilitation. My major concern is that, as most simulations are game-like in their construction they really encourage people to constantly try to alter things and after a while you tend to just sit and click away without sticking to your original plan and strategy. Not sure how this could be done differently without making the simulation slow and boring. Any ideas?

Over and out!

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

First mobile blog post

I just had to try a Swedish Blogger app. So let's see if it works.
Published with Blogger-droid v1.6.5

Setting up the blog pt. 2

It is now time to answer my second question from yesterdays first post:

What should I blog about?
For over 37 years I have been on a learning quest. Either as a learner, teacher or as now a Learning Designer (and of course I am still a learner) at a major retail company. Learning is basically the only thing that has followed me all my life, so this is what I will base my blog on.

 I could probably start a blog about music, photography or sports. But I don't think I have much to share in those subjects so I will stick to what I know best, namely Learning.

I will share my ideas, things I pick up along the way, my visions, my findings and probably most important of all my mistakes. Because as I see it, the best learning comes from sharing your mistakes with others and by that get suggestions on how to do it better the next time.

When you read about my mistakes you can either just feel good about yourself and be glad that you are not as stupid as I am. Or you can share your ideas and ideas for improvements and together we can improve our ways of working.

Maybe I should also take the time to ask you what you would like to read about in this blog. Feel free to leave suggestions and I will definitely use your ideas for future posts.

Monday, 29 November 2010

Setting up the blog

Ok so here I am. It's time to enter the world of blogging. It has been quite a journey to get here. In this first post I will write about the different questions I have asked myself from when I started considering a blog up until now when I have actually started it.

  1. Why should I blog?
  2. What should I blog about?
  3. Where should I blog?
  4. How should my blog look like?
In this very first post I will answer these questions and hopefully by that make it a bit clearer for anyone reading it (and probably for myself as well) who I am, what I will blog about and why you should continue visiting my blog.

1. Why should I blog?
This is probably both the easiest and the hardest question to answer. Easy because I am a strong believer in sharing what you know to others. And blogging seems like a very good way to share my ideas, thoughts, questions and hopefully answers.
   Hardest because it's a matter of self-confidence. In this question lies so many other much tougher questions like:
  • Who would even be remotely interested in what I write about?
  • Do I have anything interesting to write about?
  • Do I know things worth writing about
  • Can I even write in a good enough way?
  • Why should I take up people's precious time with my stupid writings?
Of course all these question have the origin in low self-esteem. So why have I now taken the step to do this? One reason is that when I started to use Twitter a couple of weeks ago I realized after a while that at least some people (thanks my precious followers) were actually interested in what I have to say. I also realized that there were a lot of people out there who share my ideas about learning in a corporate environment.
   What finally made me take the step were two things. Number one was when the magnificent blogger Tony Karrer ( asked me if I had a blog. Then I thought: "If he is interested, probably others are as well."
   The other reason is that during the latest session of #lrnchat we were asked "How do we maintain a development momentum for ourselves?" (ourselves referring to L&D people). My answer was to share ideas and learn from each other and that my own task was to start this blog.

In my coming posts I will try to answer the other questions leading up to this historical event.

Please leave comments on anything and everything. I am mainly interested in hearing your thoughts on my language skills (as I am not a native English speaker) and the design of the blog.

Thanks for now!