Dan Pontefract, Chief Envisioneer of TELUS

I discovered that many people are suffering from their thinking.

Whether via the pressures and stresses at work, a state of freneticism, the distractedness of social media and notifications, or overburdening time constraints, many of us are no longer capable of doing the heightened thinking required to be sane, engaged, and happy.

That got me down a little, to be honest. However, it wasn’t all doom and gloom. During my journey of research and interviews, I came across many people who had sorted out the secret sauce of thinking. Whether for themselves or including a team or organization that they were leading, these were indeed the “Open Thinkers.” These people had sorted out a way in which to balance the realities of today’s busy world with the absolute need to have space to creatively think while having the time and methodology to make better decisions.

One of my favorite discoveries was when I entered a hat millinery. I did not expect to get a hat made. I just wanted to see how milliners operated. What I stepped into was a hive of Open Thinking. There was simultaneous Creative Thinking (brainstorming, discussions, what if ’s and why not’s) with Critical Thinking (don’t do this, do this) alongside Applied Thinking (sewing, stitching, ironing, and steaming). I learned so much I decided to get a custom hat, to go through the process and experience their world first-hand. It was a glorious, hands-on experience.

The millinery was an incredible metaphor and example of Open Thinking. It was a sublime example of light, where all the dots of my research began to connect. “Open to Think” highlights not only what’s going wrong with our thinking; it provides an antidote for better thinking. It gives you the license to analyze how you currently approach your thinking and makes recommendations on what to alter. 

When I noticed leaders and team members in the organizations I work with were complaining about various pressures and stresses, I began to inquire about their cause. Some of those factors led to a lack of Open Thinking.

There are far too many people who are stressed out at work and life, in part because of an incredible imbalance that they place on themselves, and an imbalance that has been placed on them, too. Time has become the enemy. We no longer use it to our advantage.

What I learned is that people who appropriately balance their time through improved Creative Thinking and Critical Thinking with the need to get things done (Applied Thinking) end up being more engaged, innovative, productive and, happier.

It is possible to win back your time, your thinking, your life.

The model found in the book “Open to Think” is a simple one: Dream, Decide, Do Repeat.  It serves as a reminder that when we balance the three categories of thinking, we are far better off. I hope it provides ideas, solutions, and techniques to help you (or your team) to become better at daily thinking.

—Pontrefact is the author of “Open to Think” his third book.  “Flat Army” and “The Purpose Effect” were his previous titles tackling workplace collaboration and meaningful work. View Dan’s TEDTalk at https://youtu. be/sQSFW8HWVFg  Dan is also Chief Envisioner of TELUS, a four-time Learning! 100 award-winning organization.

Published in Insights

…TRIDIB ROY CHOWDHURY, SENIOR DIRECTOR & GENERAL MANAGER, ADOBE

HOW HAS ADOBE PARTNERED WITH ITS MANY LEARNING! 100 CLIENTS TO CREATE ENGAGING LEARNING EXPERIENCES AND DRIVE ORGANIZATIONAL PERFORMANCE?

The Learning! 100 finalists are an impressive list of organizations with a stellar learning culture, which directly correlates to their leadership position in their respective categories. This endorsement only cements our belief that learning continues to be a critical and indispensable piece of organizational growth. These organizations are invested in creating a vibrant and collaborative learning culture. Adobe is helping them to keep learners front-and-center of all their learning initiatives through unique and engaging learning experiences that can be delivered across devices. This is made possible through innovations in content creation, delivery, tracking, and collaboration. We couldn’t be happier to see this list of organizations - many of which we partner with - and we feel both humbled and proud of the global benchmarks they have set in driving effective learning cultures.

LEARNING LEADERS ARE CHANGING THEIR LEARNING ECOSYSTEMS TO SUPPORT DYNAMIC LEARNING (DIGITIZATION, MOBILE, IMMERSIVE). HOW DOES ADOBE FACILITATE THIS TRANSITION?

It’s all about the ZMOT (zero moments of truth) and the learner. Adobe’s strategy starts and ends with the learner experience. The status quo of expecting learners to come to an LMS has brought us to a stage where LMS is a “four-letter word” at best and irrelevant at worst. We need to take the learning systems to the learners at their point of need. A big part of this story is around mobile-first. We introduced the concept of auto-responsive content authoring in 2017 and continue with our innovations to achieve the author-once, publish-anywhere paradigm a reality in the multi-form factor and multi-platform world. Efficacy of learner immersion in real-world scenarios is well documented, though proven difficult to implement. Our new Adobe Captivate makes it super-easy to introduce VR in your learning - literally with just a few clicks.

We are committed to making the authoring and management experience easier for designers and administrators and the learning experience enjoyable for learners, and that’s the vision we set for my teams at Adobe. Our new LMS allows learners to navigate through content seamlessly across different media, different devices and across online and offline delivery. Learners are mobile, learners learn differently, and learners are adopting technology at a fast rate, so how long can learning organizations afford to stay relevant by tying them to their desks in a uniform straitjacket with a keyboard and a mouse?

ADOBE HAS JUST ANNOUNCED A SIGNIFICANT PRODUCT ADVANCEMENT.  HOW WILL THIS IMPACT THE FUTURE OF LEARNING?

The 2019 release of Adobe Captivate is just the beginning of our journey as we transform how modern learning experiences are created for a smarter world. The future of learning is here, and we are doing everything we can to equip our customers with the right set of tools and technologies to design, deliver and manage smart learning experiences. Some cool new features include the ability to create learning scenarios delivered using VR, creating interactive videos, and using the QR code technology to preview their courses live on mobile. My personal favorite is the ability to change your webcam video background on the fly. Now designers can create any kind of experiences without the need to physically be present or hire a studio with a green screen. You will also see some major advances around auto-responsive authoring with the revamped Fluid Boxes. Captivate Prime, being introduced this fall, has the ability to integrate informal learning among employees into a formal learning plan that is scalable and trackable.

IT’S AN EXCITING TIME IN LEARNING WITH AR, VR, AND MACHINE LEARNING CHANGING THE WAY WE WORK AND LEARN. WHAT IS ADOBE’S PRODUCT ROADMAP TO LEVERAGE THESE ADVANCEMENTS?

We are excited to see how customers use the super-easy VR functionality in the upcoming release of Adobe Captivate. Ease of content creation, dropping price points of the VR devices, and the extreme simplicity of their use makes us believe that it is only a matter of months before we see VR becoming mainstream in learning. We also are starting to see the first set of browsers offering native AR capabilities, driving the urgency of our efforts around a WYSIWYG AR content-creation framework. New developments revolve around how we integrate machine learning to help accelerate learning in a corporate setup.

Published in Insights

We are experiencing a major evolution in work, technology, and the skills that drive them. The fastest-growing fields are in machine learning, data science, vision engineering, operations engineering, and stack development, according to The Ladders. Companies struggle to find the high-tech skills that power manufacturing, technology, and our world.

In “Preparing the Workforce for Jobs of the Future” (page 14), we discover how education and business needs are not aligned, creating a skills gap among graduating students. Organizations like Toyota, Walmart and Amazon have filled the skills void by training, retraining and redeploying talent to high-need areas. But these efforts cannot keep pace with the pace of change. An astounding 60 percent of high schools don’t have a computer science program, so how can students be tech-ready at graduation? It starts with learning and training.

The 2018 Learning! 100 organizations, revealed in this issue, have some great ideas on how to close the skills gap. Navy Federal Credit Union “hires to retires” employees. Vi’s culture attracts and retains talent in the highly coveted field of health care. Shaw Industries partners with high schools and technical centers to train the next generation of talent. Amazon pays tuition up front for employees. Department of Veteran Affairs Acquisition Academy not only trains its own but serves as an outsourced resource for other federal agencies. I daresay every one of the Learning! 100 has embraced the changing workforce, invested in engagement, and support an enabling learning culture that drives performance, retention, and talent. Discover their path to excellence starting on page 25.

How does your organization compare to the Learning! 100? Find out by viewing the “Learning! 100 Benchmarks” on page 44. Learning! 100 organizations deploy mobile, support a remote workforce, invest in learning, and link learning to business impact and management goals. We invite you to join the continued dialogue in upcoming articles, Web seminars, and events. Watch for news at www.2elearning.com.

Coupa, a three-time Learning! 100 winner, shares its story on “Values-Based Leadership.” Though a small company, it has the heart and team of a Fortune 500 behemoth. Jonathan Fear, Director of Coupa University, shares the company’s road to excellence (page 20).

Congratulations to all of the Learning! 100. You inspire us every day. Learning is the answer. - Jerry Roche, Executive Editor

Published in Ideas

Leadership skills are not just for executives or even just people managers. Developing leadership skills is critical for any successful organization, from individual contributors to team leaders to senior executives. We, at Coupa, understand that the number one challenge for businesses is to improve leadership throughout the organization and provide employees with the training, resources, and community to become successful leaders and grow in their leadership skills throughout their career.

Several years ago, Coupa CEO Rob Bernshteyn wanted to invest in his growing team at Coupa. There were three core values he helped establish for the organization – Focus on Results; Ensure Customer Success, and Strive for Excellence – and these were well understood and practiced by the core team. These three principles are the lens by which we look at all of the challenges and opportunities that come our way.

With the growth of the team, Bernshteyn wanted to ensure the message retained its clarity. He and the executive team wanted to make sure that we keep focused on these core values and keep our entrepreneurial spirit while we scaled and evolved as a company. “We see leadership as supporting the people on your team and giving them space and opportunities to grow in their own personal and professional platform. We believe leadership is helping our employees leverage their strengths, as well as showing them where their blind spots might be. It’s about giving each person direction so he or she can achieve the most out of their personal and professional aspirations. It’s an extremely important role and we take it very seriously, "says Bernshteyn.

COUPA LEADERSHIP  EXCELLENCE PROGRAM

Bernshteyn tasked the training and development team to build a Leadership Excellence Program in 2016. Since its start, we have conducted worldwide workshops across a number of different disciplines from core Leadership and Communication Skills to Hiring Excellence. The most exciting thing about this program is that it enables those who show leadership qualities anywhere in the company with the opportunity to learn and sharpen these skills and visualize their journey.

At the core, the program has four stated outcomes:

>>  Clarify what Coupa expects from  leaders

>>  Gain insights regarding each person’s leadership skills

>>  Determine a leader’s role in ensuring culture is sustained

>>  Create a community of leaders across the organization

Each of these outcomes is designed to present the core values in a practical way, to make sure that each and every participant understands the expectations we have for leaders.

BUILDING AND TEACHING  COMPANY CULTURE

Before we can invest in our employees and enable their growth, we must first ensure that they have a complete understanding of the underlying culture of the company. Coupa’s culture is successful because we thrive on scaling to work with the strength of a big company and the soul of a smaller and more nimble organization. Our CEO’s point of view is that we should run our company and customer interactions as if 100 employees are 1,000 employees. In other words, provide 10x value and success across the organization. This value creates a hard-working, collaborative, and most importantly, the transparent team all working to fulfill the same goals.

The organization is also a “bottom-up” org, where all managerial members are at the bottom of the org chart, supporting their teams and the rest of the organization.

“We believe the top-down org chart is optimized for the Industrial Revolution,” according to Bernshteyn. “This works in a manual labor environment when there’s a supervisor telling people what to do. We’re living in a knowledge revolution where everyone has an opportunity to make an outsized impact to the organization and the world. And so, we believe in an upside- down org chart, which is best described as a tree with its roots, branches, and leaves. The CEO and executive team are at the bottom – at the roots of the entire organization, providing financial guidance, general direction, and broad support for the rest of the team. But the execution occurs at the individual contributor level – the leaves and the branches of the trees. When the wind blows, the leaves and branches feel it first. We want everyone at every level to understand their place in the market, the competitive landscape, and be able to provide quick action based on what they know and what they’ve learned.”

This mindset enables employees to make quick decisions that are results driven which allows them to accelerate at their job and lead a team that follows suit.

1

USING AN OBJECTIVE ASSESSMENT

Attendees complete a prework behavioral assessment to provide them with valuable insights into how their personality traits play into their work communication and relationships. These qualities and the assessment are then discussed in the group to give an understanding of communication and leadership styles and adapt to the behaviors of others on the team. Their challenge at that point is to incorporate those working styles into the needs of the organization. We recognize the importance of having a diverse group of people working together towards a common goal and giving clear message to all employees that no matter what disagreements are had throughout the process, everyone is working toward the same purpose.

ROLE OF EXECUTIVE SPONSORSHIP

Each Leadership Excellence Program course has an executive sponsor in attendance, providing guidance and real-world examples of the core values. We have received a profound response from attendees regarding the Leadership Journey exercise with the executive sponsor. The executive sponsors for each class kickoff this exercise by sharing their own career journeys. Through a timeline diagram, they have an authentic dialogue with attendees about their positive and negative experiences throughout their career and how those shaped who they are today and how they deal with situations and relationships.

“One of the framing statements I like to focus on is leading with conscious intention,” offers Jonathan Fear, VP of Coupa University, the training and development team at Coupa. “Conscious intention is inseparable from self- awareness. It requires a commitment to see the world around us clearly and be present in the moment. Leading with intention is the intersection of four cardinal points: What I say, what I measure, what I prioritize, and what I do?”

The executive sponsor shares a pivotal moment or moments in his or her career that teaches a valuable lesson. This gives an opportunity to reflect on the positive and negative experiences those leaders have created for their teammates, taking the opportunity to take a step back and see how each decision has made an effect on those around them. By sharing these experiences, it helps newer leaders to understand the struggles and joys that come along with their new skills. Our executives have taken this personal journey and posted it on the walls in their office, so they can share all the demanding work and positive experiences as a reminder for their teams. By the end of the course, the expectation is that we have given a framework for leaders to guide their employees towards a greater adoption of our core values and principles.

PROVIDING AN ENTREPRENEURIAL SOUNDBOARD

This time with our future leaders is also used as a soundboard for their ideas. At Coupa, we are open to authentic conversations about what is working, what’s not, what innovative ideas can we experiment with to make everyone’s workflow a little easier. Throughout the Leadership Excellence class, our executives and talent team speak to the kind of company that we are trying to be and how each person is a part of that amazing journey.

POST-COURSE FEEDBACK  AND ITERATIONS

The major goal of the Leadership Excellence workshop is for each attendee to develop a toolkit of knowledge to perform his or her job better than they could before. However, this is not a closed-door process; we understand it is of the utmost importance to continue fostering these relationships through our employee’s time here at Coupa. Therefore, we have instituted group feedback and check-ins as post work for this class. We invite our attendees to be transparent and let us know what they found valuable or what they did not find relevant to their growth so that we can continue to grow the class into something that resonates for all employees as a valuable tool. The check-ins give an opportunity to ensure leaders are instilling our core values and principles into their teams.

“Feedback from the attendees has been tremendous,” reported Ray Martinelli, EVP of People at Coupa. “Each class has brought together a new group of leaders from across the global organization and equip them with new tools and resources to continue to spread our Coupa leadership culture in their own teams. We couldn’t be happier with its successes and will continue to iterate as we grow to incorporate innovative technologies and opportunities. With the incredible response we had from our Leadership Excellence class, we have branched this out into several other workshops to dive into specific skill sets and continue improving the soft skills of our ever-growing team. We are our own competition and are #CoupaProud to be investing in our own core assets.

Published in Top Stories

Learning isn’t a sprint, it’s a marathon. It takes hard work, dedication and creative thinking. BY JERRY ROCHE

The 2017 Learning! Champion Award honors  individuals  for  exceptional  contributions  to  the  learning  industry.  Elearning! magazine  names  28  professionals  across six categories for 2017.

“Lifetime  Achievement”  winners  have dedicated  their  entire  lives  to  learning and  have  helped  thousands  of  others  do the  same.  “Thought  Leaders”  are  industry  experts  always  willing  to  share  their expertise  and  are  dedicated  to  bettering their  communities  and  industries.  “High Performers” have gone above and beyond, usually  in  a  relatively  short  time  frame, to  implement  new  learning  techniques  in their organizations. “Mentors” take a special interest in others to help them achieve their  potential.  “Trail  Blazers”  forge  new processes  and  procedures  in  uncharted areas  to  elevate  learning  and  technology successes.  “Innovators”  are  technologists and problem solvers who often bring these solutions to market for others to share.

The 2017 Learning! Champions are...

LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT

Joe-DiDonato

Joe DiDonato, Editor-at-Large, Elearning! magazine

Joe DiDonato has proven to be a supremely knowledgeable, well-spoken representative of the learning industry through a long and distinguished career. He’s a customer-obsessed and a “roll-up-the-sleeves” kind of senior executive with background spanning both the for-profit and non-profit worlds. His experience ranges from individual, staff and management functions to CEO and board positions. Roles include senior learning officer responsibilities and marketing at major corporations. He is currently the editor-at-large for this magazine, providing content, expertise and analysis on trends impacting the world of corporate education.

At the same time, DiDonato is co-founder and presdient of The Orphan Foundation, a non-profit that helps find homes for orphans around the world by removing barriers to adoption. Its goal this year is to raise $1 million toward its mission.

Over the course of his career, DiDonato has had executive roles with The Wellness Community, Interwise (now AT&T Connect), Knowledge Planet, Productivity Point International, PeopleSoft (now Oracle). He earned the designation “Mr. Education” at Oracle when launching Oracle’s first certification and education program for the extended enterprise.

DiDonato’s self-professed specialties are business development, marketing, start-ups, professional services, corporate education, e-learning, customer obsession and conference development.  linkedin.com/in/editoratlarge1/

Elliot-Masie

Elliot Masie, Futurist, Founder, The Masie Center

Elliot Masie is acknowledged as the first analyst to use the term “e-learning.”  Masie founded The Masie Center, a Saratoga Springs, N.Y., think tank focused on how organizations can support learning and knowledge within the workforce. He leads the Learning Consortium, a coalition of 200 global organizations cooperating on the evolution of learning strategies, including CNN, Walmart, American Express, Emirates Airline, Starbucks, General Electric and Fidelity Investments.

Masie’s professional focus has been in the fields of corporate learning, organizational performance and emerging technology. He has developed models for accelerating the spread of knowledge, learning and collaboration throughout organizations and, advocated for a sane deployment of learning and collaboration technology as a means of supporting the effectiveness and profitability of enterprises.

Masie serves as an adviser to a wide range of government, education and non-profit groups. His service has included Skidmore College Board of Trustees and as a Board member of First Robotics, CosmoSid and the CIA University Board of Visitors. He has served as a pro-bono advisor to the Department of Defense and on the White House Advisory Council on Expanding Learning Opportunities.

Masie is known as a highly approachable speaker and trainer, blending humor, applicable stories of best practice and high levels of audience involvement. Over the past 30 years, he has presented programs, courses and speeches to more than 2.2 million professionals around the world.  linkedin.com/in/elliottmasie/

Kevin-Oakes

Kevin Oakes, CEO, Founder, Institute for Corporate Productivity (i4cp)

Kevin Oakes is the CEO and founder of the Institute for Corporate Productivity (i4cp), a human capital research firm that discovers the people practices that drive high performance.

Ranked among the fastest-growing companies on the Inc. 500|5000 list, i4cp provides its extensive member network of leading global employers and government institutions with the research, peer collaboration, tools, and data essential to developing and executing workforce strategies and practices that deliver higher market performance.

A frequent author and international keynote speaker on talent management and using human capital strategically in organizations, Oakes co-authored “The Executive Guide to Integrated Talent Management.” He also serves on the board of directors for privately held Workforce Insight, the world’s leading provider of workforce management and analytics consulting services.

He has been a leader in the human capital field for the last two decades including: founder and the president of SumTotal Systems, the largest provider of talent and learning solutions in the world; chairman & CEO of Click2learn, which was founded in 1985 by Paul Allen, co-founder of Microsoft; and president and founder of Oakes Interactive, an award-winning technology-based training company in Needham, Mass.  linkedin.com/in/kevinoakes/

TRAIL BLAZER

Yvonne-Andres

Dr. Yvonne Marie Andrés, Founder, Executive Director, Global SchoolNet

Dr. Yvonne Marie Andrés has been a trail-blazer and non-stop thought leader dedicated to advancing online education and global collaborative learning since 1981. She has been an inspiration to thousands and thousands of educators worldwide, believing that in a connected world students need a global perspective. Her work has brought together youth online from 194 countries to explore community, cultural and scientific issues that prepare them for the workforce and help them to become responsible and literate global citizens.

Andrés is the co-founder of the non-profit Global SchoolNet and the founder of the Global Schoolhouse. She was named one of the 25 most influential people worldwide in education technology and was invited in 2000 to meet with President Bush to launch the Friendship Through Education initiative.

She also is the creator and producer of International CyberFair and the U.S. State Department’s “Doors to Diplomacy” program.

Andrés produces numerous videos and frequently writes about highly effective education programs from around the globe that blend online and offline learning, while incorporating the latest neuroplasticity findings and constructivist learning methodology. Her works have touched people in the U.S., Canada, Asia, Europe, Australia, South America and Africa.In short, she has offered the learning industry some amazing and tireless contributions. linkedin.com/in/yvonneandres/

Chris-Bartlett

Chris Bartlett, Director of Learning Resources, FMC Technologies

Chris Bartlett has made significant changes that enable FMC Technologies’ employees to learn and do more with less, organizing more than 150 employees from 30 countries into a central cost structure, bringing all global learning resources together into a centralized learning resources organization to greatly reduce spending on learning-related activities in just one year without affecting quality.

Here are just a few of the achievements of FMC’s Learning Resources Group, under Bartlett’s direction:

>>   Led the way as the first truly global “shared services” organization with a presence in all business units and regions of FMC.

>>   Connected people globally (75 percent of employees participating in 90 networks via the corporate knowledge sharing platform, The Edge).

>>   Connected people to subject-matter-expert verified information (The Well, FMC Technologies’ wiki, has grown 98 percent since 2012)

>>   Reduction in duplication of course development leading to standardization of courses.

>>   The near-elimination of the use of non-FMC Technologies facilities for training.

>>   Leveraging internal resources and eliminating external expense.

>>   Eliminated millions of dollars in travel costs annually through the increased availability and competency in hosting virtual events and training.

>>   Through in-house video services, reduced the time and cost of creating training materials while increasing the materials’ usefulness, reach and reuse.

>>   Implemented and integrated software to deliver meaningful data to those that need it through cleaning up a SharePoint environment.

linkedin.com/in/chris-bartlett-058636a/

Ruth-Ann-Clurman

Ruth-Ann Clurman, Senior Director of Learning  and Organization Development, Ascension Health

During Ruth-Ann Clurman’s tenure, Ascension’s Learning and Organization Development team has led innovation and accessibility through both social and mobile learning tools. The organization has been selected for the Learning! 100 list for the past five consecutive years. Its workforce supports customers both remotely and virtually and needs 24/7 access to learning solutions. The team also needs a way to connect with each other for peer mentoring and solution support.

Ten years ago, Ascension Information Services began with 675 associates from healthcare facilities across the United States. Today, it has more than 3,000 associates and is recognized as one of the best health-care information technology services organizations in the nation.

Co-workers say Clurman is encouraging and insightful, always striving for improvement in collaboration and effectiveness. That she possesses the vision to identify areas of opportunity and determine development plans that improve and engage associates. That she orchestrates changes with persistence and wisdom to allow for growth. That she continues to work ahead of the curve to clear the path in the constantly changing specialties of health care and information technology so that others may follow. Clurman possesses a master’s degree from Missouri State University. linkedin.com/in/ruth-ann-clurman-1a57883/

Ramon-Garcia

Ramón García Espeleta, Manager, Gerente Virtaula CaixaBank

Ramón García Espeleta guides Virtaula CaixaBank’s online learning effort throughout Spain. During the six years that had has been responsible for the bank’s learning platform, electronic learning has become of utmost importance. It has multiplied by 10 the capacity of concurrency, has changed the design four times, and has generated more than 15 million hours of learning, including more than 2 million in 2016. Informal training has been enhanced, and knowledge between all the people in the organization has increased. Internal trainers have become facilitators and entertainers through virtual online classroom training. The platform itself has been recognized with several awards.

During Espeleta’s watch, the main challenge of the project is for its employees to evolve together and to maintain the spirit of training and development service.

The bank’s online learning platform was born in 1999. In 2006, Web 2.0 tools, blogs, wikis and forums were introduced; in 2010, the collaborative and semantic Web were introduced; and in 2014, Virtaula emotions were introduced. The bank is now seeking the educational application of augmented and virtual reality within its content.

In the last year, a smart recommendations engine has been included in the online learning effort. This tool allows automatic content personalization and segmentation depending on the actions that the users themselves or other employees related to them have made. The bank is currently working on advanced models of artificial intelligence with analytics that inform managers about what employees need and want, as well as applications of virtual and augmented reality.  linkedin.com/in/ramongarciaespe/

Johnathan-Fear

Jonathan Fear, Senior Director of Coupa University, Coupa, Inc.

Jonathan Fear is known as a brilliant leader in the corporate education industry. He has taken all areas of education into consideration at Coupa Inc., an enterprise software company. That includes internal training, customer training, and partner certification, which have all been integrated into their existing platforms (like Salesforce CRM).

Coupa’s corporate education program is called Coupa University, of which Fear is vice president, a position from which he has been able to drive training across many different functions within the company.

Fear is detail oriented, customer focused, and a joy to work with according to staffers. He has proven able to manage the expectations and priorities of requests from top customers effectively. He works well under pressure and is always looking out for his client’s best interests. Additionally, he has always had an excellent grasp of the technology and manages resources wisely.

Fear has been with Coupa for the past six years, but has more than 20 years of experience in the training and education space with companies like SumTotal and Executrain. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Quantitative Economics and Decision Sciences from the University of California, San Diego.

Coupa has been named to Inc. magazine’s list of the 5,000 fastest-growing companies. Its primary mission is to deliver a spend-management platform that unifies business processes across all the ways employees spend money. Its consumerized financial applications digitize spending across travel and expense management, procurement and invoicing. The organization was honored with the 2016 Learning! 100 Award.  linkedin.com/in/jonathan-fear-901a11/

Mohammed-Amir-Habib

Mohammed Amir Habib, Consultant, Sidra Medical and Research Center

Mohammed Amir Habib created the first scenario-based e-learning course at Sidra (and possibly Qatar) as part of a core values awareness drive. All the other 110 or so sessions (clinical and corporate) used tell-and-test approaches with an occasional one-page contextualized question.

Because the learning industry in Qatar is still maturing, it generally purchases materials from companies in Dubai. But Habib became one of the first — if not the first — e-learning professional Because the learning industry in Qatar is still maturing, it generally purchases materials from companies in Dubai. But Habib became one of the first — if not the first — e-learning professional working in the Persian Gulf to bring cutting-edge instructional design coupled with superb development and graphics skills, to create a world-class module. The session he created — Sidra Core Values Awareness — takes the learner through a typical day in the life of a Sidra employee. The learner makes decisions with appropriate support in the form of a values champion to give guidance on behavior in line with Sidra’s values.

Habib helped everyone across the organization to not just learn about the values but actually see the values in action in their everyday decisions. The aim wasn’t just to teach the values but how they need to be lived by allowing learners to experience real, authentic experiences that occur everyday.

Habib has a background in I.T. and has been developing since the age of 10. The key to his success is his understanding of instructional design, human learning psychology coupled with his expert level technical skills.

David-Hembroff

David Hembroff, Head of Training and Development, USIC

David Hembroff has proven to be quite a visionary in the learning industry from his position with USIC, an industry leader for underground infrastructure protection with more than 7,500 employees nationwide. He has helped to chart the course of current and future training and development at USIC and is always looking at ways to improve the company’s overall education process. He’s also taken a fundamental role in USIC’s transition into a digital learning organization, helping to drive internal productivity rates up by more than 100 percent.

Hembroff’s passions are adult education, development and training, and writing. He has built great soft skills as a leader, and has honed his marketing and customer skills with some of the best in the business.

Under Hembroff’s watchful eye, USIC’s employee training has become a well-balanced blend of e-learning served through its proprietary LMS — USIC Institute — and instructor-led and on-the-job training led by its team of training leaders and coaches.

His Training and Development division has been responsible for: curriculum development, instructional design, tiered skill training courses, multimedia and interactive training presentations, micro-learning, continuous engagement and the aforementioned USIC Institute, which offers more than 100 training courses.

Moreover, USIC is a high-growth company, making learning and training crucial. Its 8,200 field technicians undergo more than 500,000 training hours per year.  linkedin.com/in/dave-hembroff-37377a3a/

Brooks-Williams

Brooks Williams, Director of Organizational Development, MidSouth Bank

As an extraordinary leader, Brooks Williams is acutely aware of the impact he has and is dedicated to helping people become their very best. He recognizes leadership as a responsibility, not just a job.

Williams is a learning executive who champions meaningful and impactful workplace learning. By being able to understand both the needs of the bank’s business at a high level and the value of employee development, he gains buy-in from across the organization that learning and development is a key to achieving real and sustainable results.

What makes Williams an extraordinary leader? He is future-directed, with a confidence and optimism about future successes that are contagious. He puts in the work: curriculum development, class (instructor-led/virtual/hands-on) presentations, site visits. Even the little things, like a phone call to an employee who made a big contribution or a handwritten note to welcome a new employee.

Success is key. He works with employees to eliminate barriers that might inhibit success, and he creates opportunities for employees to contribute more to the business and thus feel more empowered. He is invested in his people: a catalyst for their continued learning and development. One of his favorite sayings is, “When you are finished growing, you are finished.”

Williams is a senior leader with a notable career in financial services. His selfless approach to leadership has earned him an incredibly loyal following and is the primary reason his people stay with the organization for much longer than some of them had ever planned. People want to work for him. linkedin.com/in/brooks-m-williams-mbb-cmf-239200128/

Jeanne-Beliveau-Dunn

Jeanne Beliveau-Dunn, Vice President, General Manager, Cisco Services

In just the past year, Jeanne Beliveau-Dunn and her team’s many accomplishments include the launch of a $10 million global cybersecurity scholarship program aimed at helping address the cybersecurity skills gap; revamped and revised the certification program to address new and emerging technologies; and continued to bolster efforts to provide best-in-class I.T. training and certification.

In November 2015, her team launched a revised curriculum and framework for its expert-level certification program, the Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert (CCIE), to meet the changing demands of the digital economy and ensure that I.T. professionals are imbued with the skills they need to participate in meaningful business discussions about the new technical areas that are shaping business strategy and operations. This includes revising the curriculum to incorporate a new assessment approach focused on ensuring that candidates demonstrate knowledge and skills with evolving technologies such as network programmability, Cloud, security and IoT.

This next generation of I.T. certification and training represents a continuation of Jeanne’s long-time work to address talent agility and reskilling. Helping organizations address the existing skills gap and empowering professionals in their own career development is a driving passion for Beliveau-Dunn, and have been the guiding forces of much of her work at Cisco.

In the past year, her book “I’m the Boss of Me: A Guide to Owning Your Career” was published. It provides an easy-to-follow guide on developing a self-empowered approach to work, career and life, interspersing personal stories and anecdotes with lessons learned from her more than two decades of experience in the technology industry.  linkedin.com/in/jeannedunn/

THOUGHT LEADER

Matt-Kurtin

Matt Kurtin, Lead Programmer and Learning Technology Consultant, Innovative Learning Group

Matt Kurtin has been a passionate, knowledgeable, and active thought leader in the learning and development space for the past 20 years. This fact is made abundantly clear by his prominent role at Innovative Learning Group (one of Inc. magazine’s 5,000 fastest- growing small businesses) and the fact that he is in constant demand to share his knowledge with those in the industry.

Kurtin has spoken at more than 15 conferences and conventions, including many of the industry’s most prominent gatherings. He has authored more than 500 e-learning courses and is proficient in Captivate, Articulate Studio, Articulate Storyline, Lectora, Flash, ASP.NET, JavaScript, and XML.

He is a true rarity: someone with immense technical skills, emotional intelligence, and a consultative ability to identify the true need of the client. All of these traits are held together with a visionary passion for learning as a whole. His infectious zeal for learning and development has had a significant impact on the industry. He has acted as both an active developmental presence and an engaging ambassador.

Kurtin leads the mobile learning strategy at Innovative Learning Group, where he has personally developed many mobile applications and courses. Additionally, he has extensive experience supporting translation of custom e-learning courses and has worked on courses delivered in more than 20 languages.

And he has not rested on this pioneering approach to mobile learning; he is actively involved in the discovery of possible applications for virtual reality and augmented reality within the learning and development market.

Jean-Meister

Jeanne C. Meister, Founder, Partner, Future Workplace

Jeanne C. Meister founded Future Workplace to work with forward-looking companies to think differently about the future of work and the changing composition of the workforce. It is now a human resources advisory and research firm dedicated to discussing, debating and sharing the “next practices” on navigating the future workplace and workforce. A consortium of nearly 50 organizations come together both virtually and in person to discuss debate and share “next” practices on preparing for the future of work.

Meister considers herself a workplace visionary and activist who drives her clients to think differently. She has a deep background and experience in corporate learning, and has been awarded a Distinguished Contribution in Workplace Learning Award by a leading organization in the learning industry. Her specialties are employee experience, corporate university design, talent management, leadership development and executive education.

She is also the author of four business books — the first two of which were written on the topic of corporate universities. Today, Meister is very obviously passionate about helping organizations re-think how to attract, develop and inspire employees in a workplace that is rapidly changing. Her latest book is “The Future Workplace Experience: 10 Rules for Mastering Disruption in Recruiting and Engaging Employees.”

Meister has also published articles in popular magazines like Financial Times; Fast Company; Forbes; Harvard Business Review; Harvard Management Update; Journal of Business Strategy; Outlook, a Publication of Accenture; People & Strategy Journal; and Elearning! magazine. linkedin.com/in/jeannemeister/

Mike-Connor

Mike Conner, Chief Evangelist, BlueBottleBiz 

Mike Conner believes in revolutionizing the future of corporate learning. His vision is to support informal learning by giving it some structure, yet providing professionals with more freedom to learn than traditional learning systems provide. He sees the value in an all-encompassing learning solution that supports collaborative learning by combining expert (vetted) content, professional network and unique collaborative tools that allow colleagues and experts to work together.

Conner spent 2016 introducing collaborative learning to Fortune 500 and enterprise companies. He has contributed articles to top publications, and weighs in on topics that cover the future of learning, how learning technology is evolving, and ways to retain talent by building solid learning programs. His articles and quotes have been shared widely among the business community in both the U.S. and the U.K. He meets with the analyst community to discuss collaborative learning and the impacts it will have on organizations.

Conner truly believes that learning provides the foundation to success for professionals and for their organizations. For him, sharing the benefits and innovations of collaborative learning isn’t just a “job,” it’s a passion.

Previously, Conner was the Vice President of Global Sales for Safari (previously Safari Books Online). As a member of Safari’s executive team, most of his time was devoted to developing a second-generation platform and preparing his sales organization and enterprise customer base for enhancements to drive customized learning with curated content. linkedin.com/in/michaelconnercatalystsale/

INNOVATOR

Sue-Brett

Sue Brett, C.E.O., Learningonline.xyz

Sue Brett has proven to be an inspiring force who has shaped a young team of e-learning professionals and developers into achieving results that transform people’s lives and add value at every level of interaction with the company’s user base. She has spent over a decade, challenging and inspiring individuals to do more, be more.

She has been instrumental in the success and launch of e-learning portals such as Cudoo.com and apps such as Langu. ag, which offer more than 160 languages to users to learn and enhance their communication skills. She has worked hard to map the language courses to internationally recognized CEFR levels so that users can easily chart their progress from one level to another, as they progress in their language learning journey. Language lovers can now confidently learn any language and get certified based on their level.

Her company, from its absolutely unique video-based language nanolearning to peer exchange and live online learning, a combination of mLMS, apps and online-based products that connect learners, peers and instructors to a world of cultures.

Brett’s company was shortlisted for the Global Educational Supplies and Solutions (GESS) Education Awards 2017. GESS is a world-class education exhibition and conferences provider and with GESS Education Awards, it aims to acknowledge and reward the brightest contributors to the educational industry.  linkedin.com/in/sue-brett-27911034/

Rory-Cameron

Rory Cameron, Executive Vice President, Corporate Development,  Learning and Marketing Platforms, Litmos, by CallidusCloud

Rory Cameron has led all areas of Litmos at CallidusCloud since its acquisition in 2011. Much of Litmos’ ongoing success and innovative product and marketing direction is driven by his substantial knowledge and thought leadership in the learning industry.

Cameron operates a high-energy and customer-centric organization. He was responsible for multiple acquisitions in 2016, including the key addition of ViewCentral, which has been re-branded as Litmos Training Ops.

He has been recognized with many different honors and awards, including the Irish Global Technology 50 by the Irish Technology Leadership Group and the Irish “40 under 40.” He continues to rapidly grow the Litmos learning business within CallidusCloud and has reinvigorated innovation into the learning industry.

Cameron has more than 15 years of experience in business development, sales, and sales operations across a range of technology sectors. At CallidusCloud, he runs the platforms group which consists of Litmos, Clicktools, Badgeville, and Datahug, highly disruptive platforms in their respective markets. He also led the effort to broaden CallidusCloud’s solutions suite including a volume SaaS operation and the development of the company’s renowned sales academy.

Bottom line: Cameron drives all areas of Litmos and heavily impacts the ongoing success and innovative product and marketing direction within the business. linkedin.com/in/rory-cameron-8947403/

Nicole-Thomspon

Nicole Thompson, Human Resources Director, Fairfax Media

Nicole Thompson has been a driving force in creating one of the first new multi-disciplinary, contemporary learning teams within an innovative digital learning platform that enables collaboration and capability building. 

Through Thompson’s efforts, Fairfax is now speaking to companies globally about its innovations, in order to help them drive transformation in their companies through their new learning teams. Fairfax also presents at conferences to educate the broader market on what it has done to assist them transform learning.

Thompson joined Fairfax as the Human Resources Director for Technology during a career that spans 20 years. Since joining Fairfax, she has obtained an invaluable insight into digital disruption and how technology can be used to build capability. Her current role focuses on enabling business transformation and spans building capability, digital learning, talent management, diversity, alignment and engagement, leadership development and performance management.

While most organizations recognize the need to transform learning, many haven’t yet taken the big step and acted. Fairfax — with Thompson in the forefront — is one of the brave few that have taken the first steps toward L&D transformation. Thompson and her team have created what they believe to be a first within big corporate Australia: a new, multi-disciplinary team with contemporary skills and an interactive digital learning hub that requires stakeholders to collaborate on content production. linkedin.com/in/nicole-thompson-70865712/

Ibrahim-Jabary

Ibrahim Jabary, CEO, Gamelearn

Ibrahim Jabary has turned technology and video games into the best allies of learning. In the process, he has not only revolutionized e-learning, but is also proving that video games are becoming the most powerful tool within corporate training.

It all is the result of betting on the field of learning, of innovation and the transformation of traditional training methods. Thanks to his serious games, Jabary has managed to solve the big problem of e-learning. That is, 70 percent of the people who start an online course never complete it. However, with Gamelearn and his online courses in video game format, Jabary has achieved a dropout ratio of only 7 out of every 100 students.

This is done thanks to a completely revolutionary methodology that combines quality content with a practical approach, simulators to practice with “real” situations, and gamification techniques in a single format: a video game. It’s a unique recipe that has allowed for the training of more than 200,000 professionals from more than 50 countries.

In addition, Jabary has managed to meet his other great challenge: to transform online training with video games into a simple, useful and accessible tool for any company in the world, thanks to the development and launch of the first game-based learning platform in the market.This Gamelearn CEO and founder has spearheaded innovation in the field of corporate training. He was a pioneer in game-based learning platforms in the market, along with developing the first simulator for the development of customer service skills. linkedin.com/in/ibrahim-jabary-2457661/

Sarika-Khanna

Sarika Khanna, Sr. Vice President of Product and Services, Litmos, by CallidusCloud

Sarika Khanna and her team supervise all product development and innovation at Litmos, by CallidusCloud, which prides itself on being at the leading edge of innovation in the learning industry. Khanna and her team have been responsible for pushing the limits of innovation forward in the learning industry. Khanna is passionate about building products to solve business problems and is an avid learner. She has been with CallidusCloud for more than six years and was instrumental in taking the core product offering — Commissions — to SaaS business. In addition to Litmos, she has led the products for the Selling Cloud, Hiring Cloud and Marketing Cloud.

She has proven to be a strategic problem solver with ability to quickly evaluate business issues and work across cross-functional teams to develop innovative strategic and tactical solutions. Her other strengths include:

>>   Strong domain expertise in audience and segmentation, reporting and enterprise analytics, lead management, campaign management, vendor management, email and Web marketing and search marketing.

>>   Strong interpersonal, persuasion and facilitation skills with people of different levels, backgrounds, and personality styles.

>>   Excellent technical, analytical, and problem-solving capabilities.Prior to joining Litmos, Khanna worked at leading software companies including Oracle.

She held variety of positions ranging from engineering to product marketing and product management. She holds a master’s degree with distinction in Information Systems from George Mason University and a master’s in Industrial and Mechanical Engineering. linkedin.com/in/sarikakhanna/

Jack-Makhlouf

Jack Makhlouf, Chief Learning Officer, eLearning Mind

The founder eLearning Mind (ELM), Jack Makhlouf was born to tackle corporate America’s stale and ineffective internal and external- facing training. When you meet him, you instantly know that he’s an extrovert with an undying passion to make learning fun, engaging and impactful — as it’s meant to be. He is a true believer in the idea that education is the key to lasting change and true success.

Makhlouf was previously a founding member of the industry-recognized AT&T Learning Services team. He has been pioneering the e-learning industry for more than 20 years, working with Fortune 500 clients, designing, developing, and implementing innovative learning solutions and enterprise system technologies. Makhlouf brought two widely known learning components together to create a revolutionary learning methodology backed by modern brain science. This was coined as “neurolearning.” This methodology leads the way eLearning Mind thinks and implements learning solutions to foster deeper and more impactful learning experiences.

He applies neurolearning principles to the e-learning industry through instructional design, and has proved neurolearning’s effectiveness over and over by helping more than 100 Fortune 500 clients implement innovative learning solutions and maximize performance through by applying neurolearning to e-learning solutions. 

Makhlouf has a master’s degree in Instructional Technology from the University of South Florida. linkedin.com/in/jackmakhlouf/

Brent-Pearson

Brent Pearson, Founder, Enboarder

Brent Pearson has developed a new mobile learning platform called Enboarder that is streamlining onboarding challenges for busy managers in an intuitive way that adds value for new hires, busy managers and organizations.

Enboarder has been developed by Pearson in response to research that indicated one of the biggest gaps in onboarding new employees takes place between the time the employee is made an offer, and begins his or her first day. This e-learning tool uses mobile delivery methods to serve up a scripted set of interactions that fill that gap. In the first year of implementation, he’s already won pilot projects with such notable brands as Coca-Cola and Turner Broadcasting.

Pearson is a serial entrepreneur with passions in research & development, recruitment strategy and recruitment technology. He has previous tenures with Booz.Allen Hamilton as Director of Knowledge Management, as well as many startups. linkedin.com/in/bpearson/

Alexander-Salas

Alexander Salas, Supervisor, Learning Management Systems, Centene Corp.

According to co-workers, selecting just one category in which to honor Alexander Salas “is impossible.” Since joining Centene Corp., he has been a catalyst for progress — a figurative wrecking ball destroying bad habits and silos in the organization when it comes to the LMS. He has developed an entire online community to support learning and the LMS, streamlined administrative processes, and enhanced the abilities of corporate customers.

Not only is Salas an e-learning multimedia developer, he’s also a U.S. Navy veteran and a lifelong learner in learning and development (L&D).

After serving alongside U.S. Marines as a Navy Hospital corpsman, Salas has promoted and spearheaded the adoption of e-learning solutions for every employer he has worked for in the last 12 years. He’s the organizer of the Orlando Articulate Users Group, which promotes learning of Articulate authoring tools; he shares many of his custom templates at Articulate’s E-learning Heroes Community.

A former Web technology board member at ATD’s Central Florida Chapter, he is an active speaker on topics such as augmented reality, e-learning authoring and multimedia design.  Aside from all this, Salas has a master’s degree in Training and Development and Leadership and is a Certified Professional in Learning and Performance (CPLP) and CompTIA Certified Technical Trainer.  linkedin.com/in/stylelearn/

Mike-Alcock

Mike Alcock, Managing Director, gomo learning Ltd.

Mike Alcock has now created two award-winning, game-changing e-learning authoring tools: Atlantic Link in 2003 and gomo learning in 2013. He’s won more than 30 awards on the back of these, including “Best of Elearning!” (four times), Brandon Hall Gold (three times) and many more. In each case, he’s been personally responsible for sales and marketing as well as product development, leading both companies to global recognition.

With gomo learning in 2013, Alcock took an existing HTML5-based framework and commercialized it to create the next generation of Cloud-based authoring tools. Gomo was one of the world’s first responsive HTML5 authoring tools and still maintains product and innovation leadership in the authoring tools space.

Alcock and his team continue to lead the way with collaborative, Cloud-based solutions. Gomo now offers integrated hosting, xAPI analytics and a native app capability, taking it from a pure authoring tool to a complete learning suite. The new product’s sales is now growing by more than 60 percent in the last 12 months. Gomo is now a key part of Learning Technologies Group (LTG) alongside LEO, Eukleia, Preloaded and Rustici.

Alcock’s success in inventing new and innovative software solutions, as well as building and running two global authoring tool companies and changing the landscape of the industry, earned him this 2017 Learning! Champion Award. linkedin.com/in/mikealcock/

MENTORING

Che-Prince

Che Prince, Owner, Founder, Che Prince Learning Solutions

As a recent graduate from the Instructing Adults Certificate Program at George Brown, Che Prince was instrumental to the success of his students as a direct result of his excellent mentoring capabilities. He provides additional technical support and guidance in order to achieve excellent grades that will help students successfully launch new careers as training developers. In addition to his daily activities as a training developer and C.E.O. of his own learning solutions company, Prince also finds time in his busy schedule to provide the coaching and mentoring.

Prince is a subject-matter expert in learning consulting and needs analysis. He has demonstrated knowledge and experience within L&D and learning technologies, a comprehensive knowledge of practice of project management, and an understanding of adult learning. Other strengths are global and organizational awareness, change management leadership, excellent communication skills, highlighted by initiative, creativity and vision.

Bottom line: Prince is an excellent coach and mentor who rigorously applies the principles of adult learning not only to his own instructional design, but to his trainees as well. He is able to break down requirements into individual simple step-by-step tasks in order to easily obtain successful learning objectives.

Previously, Prince spent nine years as a troop commander and training officer in the Canadian Armed Forces; 16 years as an aerospace engineer at Pratt and Whitney Canada. He has a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering from Ryerson Polytechnic University and a Six Sigma Green Belt.  linkedin.com/in/cheprince1/

HIGHPERFORMER

DanHalverstadt

Dan Halverstadt, Vice President of Quality and Training, USIC

Dan Halverstadt has been recognized as a thought leader in the learning industry and has been influential in training and quality at USIC. He currently manages a team of four direct reports for training and quality. Additionally, he’s accountable for more than 60 indirect reports. In recent months and years, he’s effectively moved all training internally, saving $1 million annually in consulting cost. He added the positions of Learning Management System Administrator and Instructional Designer, who created an online learning system under his directive, reducing training times by 66 percent.

Halverstadt developed an industry, ground-breaking and award-winning training method with 270 learning modules specific to the position, utilities, and geography of each role.  He also created a system of on-the-job training that included upgrades and changes resulting in: doubling production and employee retention; reduction in safety issues by 50 percent; quality increase of 40 percent; reduction in cost by 85 percent for new technicians; and, developed user-friendly, water-proof pocket manuals affording each employee an easy-access field guide.

He has more than 20 years of experience driving improvement, visibility, and quality in organizational initiatives for the United States Air Force and USIC. As a USIC VP, he ensures that each time an employee goes out to a call, that employee is equipped with the tools to ensure safety and quality through in-depth training initiatives, protect infrastructures, and provide damage prevention.  linkedin.com/in/danielhalverstadt/

DanielleTomlinson

Danielle Tomlinson, Vice President, Global Education, Plex Systems

Danielle Tomlinson is a long-time leader in the training and development industry, having led training and development within some of the largest and highest growth software companies. Currently, she is responsible for all education services around the world at Plex Systems, a leader in Cloud-based ERP for manufacturing.

Tomlinson has spent the majority of her 20-year career working for high-tech and high-growth software companies on the Services team, specifically the Education Services team. That’s typically the department that provides technical training to customers, partners and employees. Her responsibility has centered around making sure that people know how to use the products that are being sold. Performance is typically measured against a financial goal for the delivery of this training. During her career, Tomlinson has demonstrated an ability to grow revenue and improve margin through business development initiatives, cost management, recruiting key partners and employees, and innovative training product development.

At Plex, Tomlinson has expanded the corporate education globally to search many different markets around the world. The company currently supports more than 400 organizations and 1,300 production facilities in 20 countries around the world.

In 2012, Tomlinson was honored with a “Top 40 Under 40 Training Leadership Award” by a leading publication. This Learning! Champion Award adds to her impressive career. linkedin.com/in/danielle-tomlinson-458393/

DianaBennet

Diana Bennett, Program Manager, IBM Corporate Headquarters (CHQ), Center for Advanced Learning (CAL) Technical Leadership Exchange (TLE)

Here’s the kind of person and employee that Diana Bennett is:

“D”ynamic harbinger of learning for technology leaders;  

“I”nspirational role model;

“A”dvocate for innovation and enablement — bringing positive change to IBM;

“N”urturing manager who supports, encourages and empowers her team; and

“A”gile learning program manager who removes obstacles in order to deliver quality education.

According to her co-workers, she is the type of leader who transcends the negative and works towards the growth, improvement and overall betterment of employees. Her positive nature is infectious.

In terms of reach, Bennett’s training program has a primary target audience of IBM technical employees in leadership roles, but all of IBM’s 400,000 employees can participate. In past few years, the 25,000 to 50,000 technical participants have given the program an overall satisfaction rating of 92% positive.

Bennett leads a small but effective team of nine learning professionals who trust her to deliver their vision and increase the skills and knowledge of innovative and technical IBMers.

Obstacles arise that have the potential to derail a lesser talent, but not Bennett. She faces each challenge with an unflappable positive spirit and a capable tenacity. She inspires. Success is the only end state that she knows.

With a Bachelor of Arts in Education from Arizona State University, Bennett has an extensive background in producing engaging and exciting events in corporate education. Past work includes acting as program manager for fast-forward career development events as well as facilitation, event planning, presentations, communications and client focus. linkedin.com/in/diana-bennett-b122599/

Published in Products Featured

Hujiang EdTech, China-based online education company, launched its online oral English brand Hitalk. This new brand is tailored specifically for adult English learners. Hitalk’s development is based on rich data collection, intelligent adaptive learning, unique real-world role play, and learning patterns. Through situation-based learning, the new platform can simulate nearly 1,000 real-world scenarios to provide learners with a wide range of vibrant educational experiences.

“The profile of a potential Hitalk user is any professional between the ages of 25 and 38. They are financially stable and care about the quality of their learning experience and end-result,” says Jason Song, CEO of Hujiang Class.

Huijang EdTech also announced a $7 million scholarship fund for those seeking English language education assistance.

Hitalk will also leverage Hujiang’s 150 million users to attract students. “This giant online education ecosystem has developed some of the most integrated e-learning platforms including CCtalk, an interactive online teaching platform for iTeachers, and Hitalk, which focuses on the adult oral English market,” sites Song. Hujiang EdTech plans to develop a broad spectrum of educational resources for its growing user base.

 

Published in New Products

Students will be able to able to engage in digital lessons based on BBC documentaries as part of a new partnership between Nearpod and BBC Worldwide Learning. With this partnership, Nearpod will be able to expand instruction on topics such as technology, the environment, politics and health.

Memorable video content can help deliver learning experiences that stay with you for a lifetime,” says Kara Iaconis, BBC Worldwide Learning’s vice president of sales and marketing. “We establish partnerships that transform the way video content is used in education. Nearpod’ s digital-first platform integrates cutting-edge tools with BBC’s outstanding programming, to deliver a dynamic learning experience in classrooms,”

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 As interactive instructional platform, Nearpod works on any device and features real-time student assessments and digital chalkboards. Teachers can also customize the lessons to meet the needs of their students. Instead of just watching a teacher give a presentation, students can participate by asking questions, and teachers get a better sense of what their students know or don’t understand.

Learn morehttps://nearpod.com

 

Published in New Products

Prositions, Inc., partners with Vado to offer e-learning courses. Vado’s development methodology fits perfectly with the microlearning and on-the-job mentality of Prositions’ own training productions. The addition of these microlearning courses to its portfolio will give customers an even more robust offering of quality training content.

Vado offers more than 350 management development and employee soft skill development courses. Vado courses are for individual contributors, frontline leaders and managers. The courses can be purchased in course bundles or in full learning tracks such as the award-winning Leadership Development Learning Track, Management Development, or Project Management. Vado’s content will be available through Prositions’ LMS and SCORM version of DashTrain.

“Short, targeted content is very popular with our clients and our own employees. With Vado’s content, learners are not only gaining new knowledge, but identifying clear action to apply what they learned on the job,” comments Frank Russell, CEO of Positions. “Positions continues to see growth in the usage and popularity of our microlearning platform, DashTrain, as well as our learning management system. Clients report that employees find Vado’s videos very engaging due to their shorter duration and the targeted learning they provide.”

Learn more: www.prositions.com

Published in New Products

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THORS eLearning Solutions has entered the microlearning market with its latest category of courses called “Lightning Learning.” These courses bring focus to a single concept in a short, fast, yet comprehensive format and are designed to be completed in less than an hour. They are applicable to employees at all manufacturing organizations.

THORS eLearning Solutions offers online education, applications and virtual seminars related to the manufacturing industry. It has relevant courses across many manufacturing industries that rapidly increase the manufacturing IQ of the entire organization.

The Lightning Learning format courses currently available are: Belt Classifications Series,7QC Tools Series on Charts, and Bonded Sand Series. These courses can be taken online and can be purchased by contacting the sales department at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Published in New Products

e-Literate’s LMS Market Dynamics Study reveals LMS trends within higher education across four regions around the globe. Major shifts are occurring in higher education purchasing and implementation, as Cloud-based solutions and increased interoperability fuel a dynamic market. While Canvas is the fastest growing LMS worldwide, Blackboard is the second most-used system globally behind Moodle. D2L Brightspace saw the same number of implementations in 2017 as Canvas, reflecting its growing presence in North America. Europe is also much more fragmented than the U.S.A. with only one private LMS brand with more than 5% marketshare.

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Published in Trends
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