Shorten the Length Curve Through Experience Design

The lasting impact of the recent recession continues to play a significant role in today’s business world. With many businesses operating with less staff, company expectations remain high. Now employees

The lasting impact of the recent recession continues to play a significant role in today’s business world. With many businesses operating with less staff, company expectations remain high. Now employees are expected to do more with less,
and they aren’t given a grace period to get up to speed. As a result, the learning curve must be expedited; knowledge that would usually take years to acquire is expected in a matter of weeks or months. This model is set up for failure. However,
there are training methods that development departments can provide employees with to become long-term, successful team members capable of building the business while at the same time reducing the learning curve dramatically.

It used to be that more time was allowed for developing people. Training managers utilized instructional design methods to teach skills (the “how” and “what” of the job), and leveraged on-the-job experiences and mentors to fill in the experiential side of the learning curve (the “why” and “when” of the job). Now, strip away the time necessary to build experiences, as well as the mentors who provide guidance, and it brings us to present day: less time paired with more responsibility and expectations.


The solution to expediting the learning curve marries instructional design techniques with experience design to provide trainees with the knowledge and results of each action. Traditional e-learning teaches theories but does not express
the consequences of each action. Experience is what guides the real-life decision
process. Utilizing only one technique won’t achieve the desired results. The real answer comes when instructional design provides the basis for experience design: this is called highly immersive learning.

NexLearn is a simulation authoring company that combines instructional and experience design teaching techniques to capture reality. Through the use of the highly interactive simulation modules, trainees can get real-time feedback and results of selected actions played out in realworld problem solving. NexLearn builds highly detailed, complex scenarios to allow trainees to choose their own adventure and see the results of their decisions.


>> Exercise critical thinking
>> Experience consequences
>> Receive feedback

Experience-design simulations can play scenarios out in less time and eliminate the extraneous elements that clutter real-time experiences. This condensed time-frame scenario brings faster results and improves the learning curve.


NexLearn works with companies’ subject-matter experts to build training scenarios that quickly teach topics normally learned through years of experience.What was usually described as learning through the “school of hard knocks” can now be taught, explained and experienced by employees in multiple locations in a matter of minutes. The benefit of a highly interactive learning method is all about having the experience.

Given the current business environment, finding ways to up-skill and re-skill employees quickly is increasingly important. Highly immersive experience- design simulations are one method training departments can lean on to help provide that experiential side of the business. After all, experience is the best teacher.

NexLearn develops affordable custom e-learning and immersive simulation-authoring software for companies’ training departments around the world. Launched in 2006, the SimWriter product earned the 2009 Brandon Hall Gold Award for Best Advance in Technology for Game or Simulation Authoring and is described as one of the most innovative tools for the elearning industry. To learn more about NexLearn, visit or call 1.877.265.2170.

–Ken Spero is executive director of The Immersive Learning University at NexLearn.With more than 20 years of experience, he’s helped many of the world’s finest companies build experience simulations to improve training needs and employee development.

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