Learning Lounge 2019: first speakers announced

By John Helmer October 09, 2018


Fourth year of successful Learning Lounge event brings international entrepreneurs, academics and heads of L&D together in London 13 February 2019 to showcase new innovations in learning.

Lumesse Learning is proud to unveil the first tranche of speakers booked to appear at its Learning Lounge event in February 2019.

The event has doubled its registrations every year and, runs alongside the first day of the Learning Technologies Exhibition and Conference, which moved this year to ExCeL London. This year’s Learning Lounge takes place seven minutes’ walk from ExCeL at The Crystal, one of the world’s most sustainable buildings.

The Lounge Talks have become a very popular feature of the Learning Lounge and this year the programme is bigger than ever.

Speakers confirmed so far include:

  • Susan Amat – Founder & CEO, Venture Hive
  • Anastasia Leng – ex-Google, Picasso Labs (founder)
  • Chris Hildrey – Director, Hildrey Studio
  • Peter Manniche Riber – Digital Learning Manager, Siemens
  • Kane Simms – Host, VUX World Podcast
  • Charlotte Hills – Neuroscience Guru, Lumesse
  • Dr Jamie Brassett – Course Leader, Central Saint Martins
  • Laura Morinigo – Google Developer Expert, CIO DMod Labs

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3 Business Challenges You Can Solve with User-Generated Video Content

By Georgia Jones October 09, 2018

This post was written by Cheryl Clemons, CEO of LearnerLab / StoryTagger.

What do diarist Samuel Pepys and internet celebrity Logan Paul have in common?

Apart from the rat connection – with Paul’s infamous Tasering of a dead rodent and Pepys’s descriptions of the Great Plague (spread by the fleas that lived on rats) – both tell us what’s happening around them. Pepys’s diary accounts of the Plague and the Great Fire of London, which reference the real people impacted by these events in 1665–6, give us an unparalleled insight and sense of what it was like to be there in a way that no regular historical account can successfully rival.

Diarists have been around since Antiquity, and from the Renaissance onwards it became increasingly common for people to record their personal thoughts and opinions, but just imagine what we might know now if the chroniclers of old had had access to YouTube and the kind of video-creation technology we have today … With the ready availability and ease of use of this technology, organisations are increasingly seeing personal video content as an essential strategy for communication, and we can point to three principal reasons for this.

First is the consumer demand for video – and lots of it. User-generated video is the most viewed, shareable and memorable online content – it’s no accident that Facebook announced their video-first policy last year, and Instagram and number of other platforms have put video at the centre of their strategies. But this is not just the preserve of digital-marketing and content teams; social video is poised to unblock some key challenges in the workplace from unlocking access to expertise to helping relate and adapt to change .

Then, we also have serious trust issues. Despite the 2018 Edelman Trust Barometer showing a rise in trust in experts this year, many of us just don’t believe what we are told by traditional media and company boards. Instead, people are relying on their peers to help them learn and influence how they feel about things. They want to hear about real experiences.

And, third, organisations are trying to create more open, personal and less hierarchical cultures to innovate and compete in times of constant change. Check the brand values and behaviours of top companies right now, and you’ll see the same buzzwords repeated: ‘Open’, ‘Personal’, ‘Authentic’, ‘Honest’, ‘Real’, ‘Human’. Breaking down silos, feeling connected and sharing ideas underlie a number of business challenges.

In this context, user-generated social video ups the ante on what’s personal, authentic and essentially human. With these qualities, it’s having a big impact in the following three areas:

  1. Increasing sales capability

Video and sales training have been around since John Cleese suited up for Video Arts in the 1970s, but this no longer cuts it, with 70% of sales reps saying that instant access to real-time knowledge, best practices and coaching is more effective than traditional training. User-generated video of the best pitches can show nuances in language and tone in ways that other media cannot easily compete with.

By way of example, a large technology company we work with needed their account managers to spot opportunities earlier and base their conversations on business benefits – something accessible in the field; short and real. Sales and technical experts at that organisation are now making their own two-minute videos about market context, key sales steps and micro case studies for the account teams to use at point of need – they’ve even set up a competition for them to record their best elevator pitch.

  1. Personalising leadership

Employee-engagement data and Glassdoor reviews show that leaders struggle to earn trust and build personal relationships with their wider teams. We’re seeing improved leadership effectiveness from user-generated video content in two different ways. First, in structured leadership programmes, leaders reflect on what they’ve learned, how they’ve applied learning and the impact of this through a vlog to share with the rest of the group. The process of distilling thoughts and saying it out loud supports reflection and communication as well as benefiting others with lessons learned and success stories.

Another is the reinvention of the CEO video message. Here, the best examples are where leaders create and share stories about their own personal experience without too much scripting or corporate speak. One leader we know talked openly about his childhood to relate to a specific moment of transformation for his company. It’s harder to fake on video, and you get a 360-degree view of the person.

  1. Employee advocacy for careers and talent

In the consumer space, there is a shift from influencer marketing – where people with influence are encouraged to promote or advocate products – to putting promotion into the hands of employees. And this doesn’t just apply to product but also recruitment – after all, who better to secure the best talent than the employees that the new recruit is going to work with? In a number of forward-thinking companies, people are recording their own career stories, the reasons why they work there, what the company purpose means to them in their role and so on. This content is then shared internally as part of a campaign to support engagement and retention and externally through social channels to attract new talent. Using a structured interview framework can help people tell their stories in line with key values and the direction of the business, so it’s not only authentic but also a direct extension of the employer brand.

Find Cheryl on social media- 

Twitter : @cherylclemons 

Linkedin: Cheryl Clemons

Dyslexia and learning: ‘organisations and people do wonderful things to help you’

By John Helmer October 04, 2018

John Helmer talked to Roshan Patel, an account manager at Lumesse Learning, about his dyslexia and how he has managed it at work and in his learning.

Q: When did you first know you had dyslexia?

I was probably around 13 years old. Some of my schoolteachers noticed I was struggling. I had struggled in school a long time before that, but maybe the signs weren’t ever picked up on, in terms of actually diagnosing me. But I had always had support in school at a young age, with extra time, additional tutors, that sort of thing

Q: How did it affect your educational career?

It was hard. It was really difficult. I confess I was probably a difficult young lad. I would become very frustrated, because I was unable to keep up with the other kids in school. Maybe sometimes that came out in anger, frustration, and just not being able to achieve the goals that were set in front of me at a young age.

Q: Do you feel you got appropriate help and support?

I feel that since I was diagnosed, and since that time, I have been able to get the support I needed – and I continue to receive support. Not just with certain software and hardware but also being able to talk to people, which is just as important.

I think dyslexia is recognised more than ever before, and I think it’s celebrated, if you want, especially with Dyslexia Awareness Week in October. I’ve been very lucky in that respect, but it’s important to increase its awareness across industry.

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Future of work: good news hard to find – but it’s certainly there

By John Helmer September 11, 2018

By Louise Maloney and John Helmer

According to a report into the future of skills employment in 2030 (a collaboration between Nesta, Pearson and Oxford Martin Business School) 70% of people are currently in jobs that have an uncertain future. This might sound unsettling, but it doesn’t mean these jobs will necessarily disappear. Roles could adapt to future demand through occupation redesign and training, and new jobs will be created (e.g. immersive experience designer), which are already being minted as we speak. In fact, the report predicts that, overall, the US and UK workforces will continue to grow through 2030.

However, there is an in-built problem for all commentators who attempt to take anything but the gloomiest view of future-of-work themes, a problem that tends to make any media coverage tip towards bleak and depressing. While it is relatively easy to pinpoint those jobs that are ripe for automation – and to provide lists that terrify parents, teachers and recent entrants to the workforce who might have spent years gaining professional qualifications now about to become obsolete – it is much harder to be at all certain about the future. There will undoubtedly be new jobs created by the tide of automation about to sweep through the workforce – we just don’t know what they will be yet.

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Lumesse highlights trust issues for L&D and HR in the age of blockchain

By John Helmer August 23, 2018

Use of, and interest, in blockchain as an alternative trust mechanism is on the increase in HR and L&D, although the technology has trust issues of its own, according to an article in Lumesse Learning’s relaunched Curve magazine. 

Trust is a central issue for the People function in the wake of the Facebook/Cambridge Analytica debacle, the introduction of GDPR, rising fears about invasion of privacy, cyber attacks and abuses of social media. In an article for The Curve magazine, Peter Williams, financial journalist and editor of The Learning Technologies Awards Newsletter, interviewed leading experts in the field who say that blockchain is rapidly making inroads against this background.

Adriana Hamacher, Editor of Blockchain News, says that HR is already on the Blockchain, recording job candidates’ specifications in a bid to streamline the recruitment process. Blockchain offers many advantages for similarly data-driven areas of L&D, making learners’ personal training history more portable between jobs and giving them ownership of their own learning data and certifications. Others point to drawbacks with blockchain, including its association in public mind with the shadowy world of cryptocurrencies, and the need to increase understanding of how it can best be deployed.


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10 reasons why inclusive design is good design

By Cat Oxley August 13, 2018

People won’t always say this out loud, but there’s a lurking assumption that making learning content more accessible is going to mean making it less beautiful. Obviously you want to make your content work for the widest and most diverse audience of learners. But does that necessarily mean a compromise on aesthetics?

I say no. And luckily for me, all the best authorities on design agree. Here’s why.

Let’s start with ‘What is good design?’ Good design is not only about the look and feel of a thing, it’s also about fitness to purpose. And that is true whether the thing in question is something functional like a potato peeler, or something innovative and slightly abstract like a virtual reality experience. It’s there to get the job done, whether the job in question is to peel you spuds or blow your mind.

50 years ago design pioneer Dieter Rams, a German industrial designer responsible for Braun’s consumer products, asked himself: is my design good design? In answer to his question he created 10 principles of good design (sometimes known as the ‘10 commandments’).

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The geopolitics of AI raises trust issues for Learning and HR

By John Helmer July 31, 2018

London is the AI capital of Europe, says a report commissioned by the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan. According to another report, this one from the Select Committee on Artificial Intelligence issued by the House of Lords, the UK is, ‘in a strong position to be among the world leaders’ in its development.

If being smart about the implications of this critical technology, having the right skills and ecosystem and a thriving entrepreneurial culture in place were only enough, then UK would seem to be on a good course to profit massively from this new wave of technological change. But even the most fervent cheerleaders for the UK’s AI industry acknowledge that it lacks something vital to come anywhere near that goal. Scale.

At the recent FutureFest conference in London there were conflicting narratives on offer about the  potential role to be played in the future of AI by the UK and Europe; some fairly optimistic, some less so, and some downright scary. Just for a change the scariness of these more extreme scenarios did not involve visions of AI taking all our jobs, or robot overlords running amok and subjugating humankind. Instead, they were about more immediate and practical concerns; things we hear about on the news every day such as data privacy and the global balance of power. And somehow this immediacy made them all the more unsettling.

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Zap your brain to boost its learning potential. Or maybe … don’t

By Trudi Taylor July 24, 2018

woman wearing cap connected to wires

Imagine a world where the impossible becomes possible. Imagine being able to pop on a pair of headphones and finding that the maths problem you have been struggling with suddenly becomes clear, or that you can pick up a musical instrument you have never even tried before and learn to play a tune with seemingly little effort. Just imagine being able to move, think and create faster than you ever have before. Well, you no longer have to imagine it. The technology is already out there and on public sale. Sound too good to be true? You might just be right…

Earlier this month Charlotte Hills invited me to join her at the European Neuro Convention in London. Charlotte is a Senior Learning Designer at Lumesse Learning and is currently completing a Psychology PhD at the University of Warwick. She is passionate about using learning principles from neuroscience and the psychological literature to create effective learning and drive adoption. I jumped at the chance to spend a day with her immersed in a different world – and I’m glad I did. I left the conference feeling inspired by all the great work being carried out to create a better life for people living with a neuro-disability.

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What can an architect tell us about learning design?

By Carole Bower May 30, 2018

Chris Hildrey

Chris Hildrey is an inspirational young architect who uses design thinking to address real-world problems like homelessness. We met up with him during his stint as a designer in residence at the Design Museum, London.

Following an excellent presentation Chris gave at our Lumesse Learning kick off held at the Design Museum earlier this year, we invited him to run a design thinking workshop with our team which provided even more food for thought. I wanted to find out more from Chris Hildrey about how he might overcome some of the typical challenges we face as learning designers.

To start with, I asked Chris if he could think of an example of when he was trapped by what he already knew and therefore found it difficult to apply design thinking – and for any advice and techniques he would suggest when this happens. 

Chris: This is actually more common than you might think. In fact, I’d go so far as to say that most complex problems require you to start with a feeling of being penned in by your own assumptions. How long that situation lasts is down to many factors but, first, it’s important to accept that design thinking isn’t always an easy process.

I see design thinking as being like climbing equipment: it might let you get places that you wouldn’t have otherwise reached but it can still require significant effort to get there.  That said, there are no hard and fast rules: sometimes you discover the most interesting alternative routes through sheer determination, other times they sneak up on you during a period of rest. So, if you find yourself stuck it’s important not to be afraid to put an issue to the side if it frees you up to explore other aspects. Being too single-minded can also have the effect of grinding away at research for research’s sake so you need to be continually honest with yourself about how relevant what you’re doing really is. Give it a chance but be disciplined and avoid paralysis by analysis.

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Prepare for the future of work with me:time

By Carole Bower April 04, 2018

The L&D industry is really good at predictions – take your pick – there are many of them being shared across the usual channels.

Last year we saw predictions around new models for learning – with a move away from centralised learning provision to a more learner-driven approach. And it’s been interesting to watch the gravitational pull towards “self-directed learning” as the data-driven realities around the need for learning enablement rather than learning creation hit home.

At Lumesse we have been extremely fascinated at the feedback on our me:time platform  – a platform that enables self-directed learning, putting learners in control. It’s also interesting to hear from the organisations who are reviewing me:time who don’t just see this as an alternative approach to learning enablement but as an employee benefit.

So on reading the latest Bersin predictions, it occurred to me that the first six anticipated trends have already been influencing our thinking around the design of me:time and the reasons why we feel that now is the right time for a different approach to learning.

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