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  • July 26, 2019 4:10 PM | Kandice Kidd (Administrator)

    By Susan Camberis

    Editor, Training Today

    Most talent development (TD) professionals are familiar with web-based learning. 

    Organizations may choose web-based learning over face-to-face for a variety of reasons, including cost, sustainability, learning style, a remote workforce, branding, and wanting to ensure internal consistency.  But, effectively combining web-based learning with meaningful digital interactivity can be a challenge. 

    ATDChi’s July webinar featured Dr. Nicole Buras and Lauren Merrild, Learning and Development Specialists at Health Care Service Corporation (HCSC). Their focuses are in experiential and collaborative workplace learning, and digital interactivity in web-based learning, respectively.  Buras and Merrild’s session discussed an HCSC case study and included applications and learnings for TD professionals. 

    Innovations in Learning

    Buras and Merrild shared a number of recent innovations in learning including storytelling, simulations, micro-learning, scenarios, animations, interactivity, and game elements.  They emphasized the importance of 1. Choosing the best solution to address the problem you are training to solve; 2. Good instructional design; and 3. Getting leadership buy-in.  According to Buras and Merrild, “Innovations in learning are not a solution; innovations are concepts to be adapted and incorporated into learning solutions as appropriate.” 

    Merrild explained that successful execution of interactivity includes three primary elements:

    1.      Physical interactivity:  Tangible interactions such as clickables, rollovers, drag and drop’s, and other methods.

    2.      Cognitive interactivity:  Interactions and engagements that occur through the use of scenarios, games, stories, and other strategies.

    3.      Interaction enablers:  Components that provide focused and adaptive guidance within a course. 

    “Today it’s more of a reciprocal relationship between the learner and the technology,” according to Merrild.  What’s important is being conscious of each interactivity element and understanding how they work together. 

    The Case Study

    The impetus for using game-based learning at HCSC arose through continuous improvement efforts that identified that new associates lacked industry-specific terminology.  The team chose a web-based solution because it could automatically build in learning challenges and be incorporated into existing new hire training plans.  Game-based learning was also selected because it included multiple types of interactivity, which has been shown to positively impact knowledge gains.  The team used Storyline 3 for course design and Photoshop for editing.

    HCSC created their own game-based course design model to meet the needs of their learners.  Their model combines three game tenets (narrative that builds in complexity, conflict & resolution, and characters) with the two enabling features of rules & challenges and awards & feedback.  The result is “play as a learning experience,” in which knowledge gains are achieved regardless of success in a game task.

    What did HCSC learn?

    In total, HCSC collected data on 121 participants.  Qualitative and quantitative data supported findings related to high levels of engagement.  Learners expressed positive perceptions of the game-based design elements and spoke highly of the activities.  Participants not only enjoyed the course but also demonstrated knowledge gains between the pre-and post-test evaluations.  According to Buras and Merrild, “This aligns with the literature on adult learning which argues for interactivity, and more narrowly game-based elements in WBTs.” (Arnold, 2014; Chatterjee, 2010)

    HCSC found that game-based learning was a great fit with their employee-base, and they are looking for additional opportunities to further utilize game-based learning design in 2020.   

    Want to learn more? 

    Check out the article that Dr. Nicole Buras, Lauren Merrild, and their colleague, Dr. WooRi Kim, wrote earlier this year for Training Today entitled Balancing Game-Based Design and Evaluation: http://sco.lt/7N7IKu    

  • June 30, 2019 5:54 PM | Kandice Kidd (Administrator)

    Deanna recommends:

    The Alliance: Managing Talent in the Networked Age

    Co-authored by Reid Hoffman, Ben Casnocha, and Chris Yeh 

    This book is a quick read, with actionable ideas, for talent managers and leaders who are interested in creating alliances between themselves and their employees in a way that builds relationships and trust. Work relationships that follow this model create a win-win situation that will enable leaders to retain their top talent.

    Adriene recommends:

    Management Mess to Leadership Success: 30 Challenges to Become the Leader You Would Follow

    Scott Jeffrey Miller

    This is a great book that not only addresses some great leadership principles, but illustrates both good and bad examples of this in practice. Leadership is challenging and Scott does a great job of sharing the lessons he has learned along the way so that we can learn from his experience. It is a short read, easily accomplished in one sitting with a 30 day plan to practice the challenges.

    DJ recommends

    Find Your Fit: A Practical Guide to Landing a Job You’ll Love

    Sue Kaiden, Editor & Foreword by Dick Bolles

    This book was free with the ATD membership. It’s an easy read and a person can easily skip to specific sections, should they choose. The information is all great and, I imagine, helpful, even if you think you have found your fit already. Knowledge from a pool of people was collected to shape this book and there are a number of helpful tools at the end!

  • June 29, 2019 11:17 AM | Kandice Kidd (Administrator)

    Got Game?  Starting Gaming (Learning) in Your Organization | June 20, 2019 

    By Susan Camberis

    Editor, Training Today

    Even if you do not consider yourself a “gamer,” we all play (or have played) games at different points in our work and personal lives. 

    ATDChi’s June General Meeting hosted by Allstate in Northbrook, featured Stephanie Daul, Learning & Development Consultant and author of Game Design for Learning a TD at Work publication.  Stephanie has designed more than a dozen gamified learning experiences for global Fortune 500 clients. 

    As described in ATD’s 2014 white paper on the subject, “Gamification is the integration of game characteristics and mechanics into real-world training programs or tasks to promote change in behavior.”

    During her interactive session, Daul asked participants to play familiar games as a way of showing how foundational gaming elements such as goals, rules, reward structures, feedback, and storytelling, can be found in even the simplest games.  At the end of the night, participants had the opportunity to put their new knowledge into action by creating their own games. 

    If you want to up your game, here are five smart takeaways to consider:

    1.      Use games to build confidence and motivation.  According to Daul, while there has not been a lot of research on using games in organizations, meta-data suggests that games increase retention by 9%, declarative knowledge by 11%, and procedural knowledge by 14%.  Even more impressive is that learners report 20% greater confidence in utilizing what they just learned when games are involved and motivation and positive attitude toward learning content increases by 52% with gamification.   

    2.      Know your players.  The key to developing a good instructor-led game starts with understanding your audience.  Daul shared four player “types” to keep in mind. 

    • Hunters” are ultra-competitive; their goal is to win to the greatest degree possible.
    • Achievers” want to always be the first ones done.
    • Socializers” are focused on making sure everyone playing the game is engaged and playing well together.
    • Explorers’ want to do everything on every level before moving on.

    3.      Design First.  Develop Second.  Daul shared several examples of games she had developed, with some taking just a few hours and others taking several weeks to build.  In each case, the design document was key.  What is your business objective?  What do your learners need to learn?  Which gaming elements will best help your learners understand the content?  In this way, gamificaiton is no different than other types of learning – it starts with good design.

    4.      Use a checklist.  Daul shared the checklist she uses for game design, of which a key element is “play test” – testing out your game with different audiences.  The checklist is a useful roadmap to the key steps you need to think through to design your own games:

    • Determine business goal or objective
    • Identify the gaming strategy
    • Create a story
    • Create a prototype
    • Play test, as much as possible, anytime you have an audience
    • Adjust the prototype
    • Play test, as much as possible, anytime you have an audience
    • Launch to pilot
    • Adjust
    • Implement

    5.    If you want to design games, play games! When Daul was with Grainger, she hosted a small group gathering called “Games and Grubs,” an innovative, low-cost way for colleagues to learn about games and gamification.  Each week a different member of the group brought in a game.  The group played the game, then discussed for 20 minutes, figuring out how the game could be applied to the business.  Using games people are familiar with allows them to think about the gaming concepts, according the Daul. 

    Ultimately, gamificaiton can take many forms – in terms of investment, complexity, and technology.  What is most important is designing games that support performance improvement to move the business forward. 

    Want to learn more? 

    Daul suggests Play to Learn by Sharon Boller and Karl Kapp as an excellent starter book on gamification.  If that sparks your interest, next read Reality is Broken by Jane McGonigal.  Finally, if you really want to build your knowledge base, Daul recommends The Gamificaiton of Learning and Instruction by Karl Kapp.

    Special Thanks

    A very special thank you to  Tom Gross and Nicole Afton for volunteering during this event.  We couldn't do what we do without our volunteers.

  • June 08, 2019 9:48 AM | Kandice Kidd (Administrator)

    Micro-learning has emerged as a methodology to provide just-in-time training and assessment for a specific job function. These short simulations where users must demonstrate their mastery of a completed task is rapidly becoming a required feature in corporate training.

    This session will offer five current solutions on how micro-learning can be implemented to your corporate portfolio. We will explore Augmented Reality, 3D Virtual Reality and simulated experiences ranging from very low to high-end cost.

    You will learn about:

    • Articulate Rise as a low-cost, low maintenance development platform
    • Augmented reality development for fast task mastery
    • 3D virtual reality for deep learning solutions in micro bursts

    What Advancing Tech and Microlearning: A Perfect Blend

    When:  Tuesday, June 25, 2019, 6:00-6:30 PM Networking; 6:30 – 8:15 PM Session

    Where:  Illinois Institute of Technology, Tech Central, 3424 S. State Street, Room 225, Chicago, IL 60616.

    There is parking across the street, and the building is accessible by Red and Green CTA lines.

    How Much:  No Charge

    RSVP: CorpUPDN@gmail.com

      WhoDennis Glenn, MFA is an adjunct professor at DePaul University Graduate School for New Learning where he teaches in two domains: engaging social media, and mastery learning using serious games. His instructional design and eLearning experience was honed when he joined Northwestern University as manager of the advanced media production studio. In 2001, Glenn was promoted to assistant dean for distributed education at the School of Communication where he was the Director of the Distributed Learning Center. Dennis is also president of his own consulting firm and has designed interactive virtual patients for the medical industry that assess the cognitive decision-making abilities of surgeons, doctors, and nurses. He has created learning and assessment simulations for Pearson Learning, Baxter, Abbott Labs, American Association of Nurse Anesthetists and over twenty-five medical schools. 

  • June 02, 2019 7:01 PM | Kandice Kidd (Administrator)

    What is a Power Member?  A Power Member is an ATD member that holds both local chapter and national membership. Local chapters provide opportunities to connect and learn with other TD Professionals in your area. National membership provides access to information about trends in the industry, research, best practices, and design tools and templates from ATD sources. I’ve been thinking about Power Membership even more after returning from the recent 2019 ATD International Conference and Expo (ICE) and reflecting on my experience as a Power Member. Both memberships provide a multitude of resources for you to use professionally. Membership at both levels also allow human connections to develop organically.

    I had the opportunity to attend ICE with some local board members which was a great way to learn more about our roles in the talent development field. As a chapter we organized a meetup with other local ATDChi members that attended ICE this year. Our purpose was to meet and connect with other members and have ice cream together. This time together allowed us to put names with faces, have some laughs, and share our favorite conference experiences. These moments were meaningful to me not only as a local member, but also as chapter President for it provided a shared experience that will build the foundation for stronger professional relationships.

    The national membership allowed me to register for the conference using a member discounted rate, attend a variety of amazing sessions and visit with vendors to learn more about emerging technologies and a variety of platforms. I met TD professionals from different states and countries and learned more about their roles.  Discussing our key takeaways from the sessions that we attended was priceless. Meeting members from different parts of the world expanded my key takeaways as cultural influences allowed information to resonate with people differently. I was able to also learn more about sessions that I couldn’t attend from others who had participated in those sessions. This provided me with insight about potential presenters to see during my next conference, or in the interim read articles by or view recordings of those presenters. These informal learning opportunities were worth the price of registration plus held a special place in my heart because of the new people I met.  

    Each connection I made was a genuine display of curiosity, two or more people looking to learn more about each other and share our session experience.  The human connection now enhances the connection on social media platforms. I can send a message to any one of my new TD friends and continue to build on our shared conference experience.

    If you aren’t an ATD Power Member, consider adding this to your Professional Development plan. Local and national membership has a place in helping you as a Talent Development profession have impactful discussions with your business partners to identify, develop, and deliver the right solutions in addressing performance gaps in their organizations.

  • May 26, 2019 11:09 AM | Kandice Kidd (Administrator)

    Registration for the Chicago eLearning & Technology Showcase will open in May.

    Deadlines for registration and lunch orders appear below:

    • Monday, July 22: Deadline for the early registration rate
    • Monday, August 5: Deadline for registering to have your specific lunch order guaranteed
    • If you have any special dietary requirements, please register by August 5.
    • If you register after August 5, the venue may not be able to accommodate your exact lunch request.
    • Sunday, August 11: Deadline for advance, online registration
    • Tuesday, August 13: Onsite registration available at the event; onsite registrants cannot be guaranteed a lunch.
    • If you register onsite, you may need to purchase a lunch from the café at the conference center.
    • Registration cost includes light breakfast, coffee and snack breaks, and lunch. 
    Group  Early Rate (by July 22)  Late Rate (July 23 or later) 

    Host organization (ATDChi & STC Chicago) members

     $125  $155
    Other Alliance Members  $155  $185
    Nonmembers  $185  $225

    For the host organization rate, you must be a member of ATDChi or STC Chicago. Membership in an affiliated national or international organization (ATD or STC) does not qualify you for the host organization rate.

    If you have questions, please contact registration@chicagoelearningshowcase.com.

  • May 25, 2019 8:57 AM | Kandice Kidd (Administrator)

    Group Coaching:
    Tools & Techniques To Get The Most From Your
    Talent Development Dollars
    with Dan Johnson, CPC, CNTC
    July 10 @ 1 pm * Webinar (via Zoom)

    Open to ALL ATDChi members and guests

    Join us as we learn about the types of group coaching, phases of group coaching, and how group coaching can be a more efficient AND effective solution for developing leaders and sustaining performance (while saving 87% or more of an organization’s training dollars).  You’ll benefit from the lessons learned shared by someone who has led group coaching for 15 years in a variety of environments.  After participating in this session, participants will be able to:

    • identify different types of group coaching
    • differentiate group coaching from team building
    • describe the advantages of group coaching vs individual coaching
    • identify the phases of a group coaching process
    • use a powerful Group Coaching tool to reduce conflict, improve workplace relationships, and enhance accountability
    • initiate a Group Coaching approach to improve the effectiveness of your training, leadership development, or talent development initiatives

    ABOUT THE PRESENTER:  Dan Johnson CPC, CNTC is the founder of Performance Mastery and Certified NeuroTransformational Coach and consultant specializing in leadership development, training, executive and team coaching, and workplace performance improvement.  Combining neuroscience with his expertise in business, performance improvement, and measurable outcomes, Dan uses neuroscience-based coaching, training, and consulting to accelerate measurable outcomes and insight for his clients in large financial institutions, manufacturing, retail, not-for-profit, government, agriculture, and healthcare industries.  

    TO REGISTER:  Visit  https://atdchi.org/event-3374695 Registration is $10 for all ATDChi members and $20 for guests.

  • May 08, 2019 6:16 AM | Eileen Terrell (Administrator)

    Lean Change Management:

    Aligning Executive Leaders the Lean Change Way

    Date:  Friday, May 10, 2019

    Time:  8:30 - 10:00 A.M CST (30 minute networking before and after)

    PLEASE NOTE: This session will be presented IN PERSON AND VIA WEBINAR. We will be meeting at Schneider Electric, 200 N. Martingale Road, Schaumburg, IL 60173. Coffee will be served.


    Today’s change managers and leaders want to know how they can change faster to keep up with a constantly increasing pace of change and disruption.

    Lean Change Management takes the best ideas from agile, lean startup and design thinking to help you create an approach to change management that is compatible with your organization, and the change you’re working on.

    Inspired by the book, "Lean Change Management," by Jason Little, Barbara Heller and Maria Odiamar Racho from Allstate, will be discussing a new, leaner way of aligning executives around key foundational elements of your change initiatives.

    Jason will also be joining the conversation virtually to share his own insights.  

    In this highly interactive session, participants will walk away with simple tools and flexible methods of applying them to your change initiatives.

    Our Speakers:

    Jason Little

    Jason helps organizations discover more effective practices for managing work and people.  Sometimes that means plucking tools from the Agile world and sometimes that means using more traditional management practices, such as The Rockefeller Habits. He is passionate about the people side of change, and focuses on bringing meaningful change into organizations that will improve the lives of people. He is author of the new book call “Lean Change Management: Innovative Practices for Managing Organizational Change” and also released a video series titled:  “Agile Transformation – A Guide to Organizational Change” on Safari Books Online and InformIT. 

    Barbara Heller

    Barbara has been with Allstate for 20 years in various roles.  She is currently Allstate’s Practice Lead for Change Leadership & Navigation with deep expertise in leading change efforts and building capabilities.  Barbara regularly provides thought partnership and delivery on enterprise-wide projects as well as to individual clients and other Allstate market-facing businesses including Esurance, Allstate Canada Group, Allstate Technology, Data & Analytics, Strategic Operations, Claims, Allstate Life and Retirement, Human Resources, and Agency Operations.  Barbara has Masters of Science in Organization Behavior from Benedictine University and a B.S. in Management Information Systems from National-Louis University.

    Maria Odiamar Racho, MSOD

    Maria is an Organizational Effectiveness Practice Lead at Allstate Corporation, where she specializes in culture, complex systems and networks, leader effectiveness, strategy and change.  She is also the founder of two Employee Resource Groups, the Allstate Asian American Network (3AN), and Intrapreneurs@Allstate (I@A).  Her passion centers on enabling human systems to tap into and unleash potential so that they can achieve their purpose and mission. Maria also finished her Executive Masters of Science in Organizational Development at Pepperdine University.

  • May 08, 2019 5:13 AM | Eileen Terrell (Administrator)

    Because coaching can help an organization save up to 87 cents on every dollar spent on training or leadership development, the Executive, Team, and Group Coaching PDN is designed to link Chicagoland members with the knowledge, skills, and resources to improve the effectiveness of their coaching and/or coaching initiatives within their organizations.  The Executive, Team, and Group Coaching PDN welcomes ALL ATDChi members, including those who supervise coaching or talent development initiatives within their organization, those who use coaching skills in their job roles, those who simply have an interest in coaching, as well as those who are coaches internal or external to an organization. 

    The Coaching PDN meets virtually (via Zoom) on a quarterly basis, making it easily accessible to all ATD Chicagoland members.

    Mark your calendars now!  The next virtual meeting of the Executive, Team, and Group Coaching PDN will be July 10th at 1 pm.  “Group Coaching: Tips and Techniques to Get The Most From Your Talent Development Dollars” will be facilitated by Dan Johnson, Performance Consultant and Certified NeuroTransformational Coach with Performance Mastery.  Future meetings include “Conscious Leadership” with author Alan Seale and  “Sticky Coaching Situations” with International Coach Federation Ethics Chair Sue McMahon.

    There is a nominal fee for Executive, Team, and Group Coaching PDN meetings. All registration monies benefit ATDChi directly.

    For more information see Dan Johnson or check out the PDN under the “Learn and Develop” tab on the ATDChi website.

  • April 09, 2019 4:52 PM | Ben Cardenas

    By Jimel Razdan

    The story is not for you, it’s for the learner.

    This theme permeated Hadiya Nuriddin’s ATDChi session on March 21, 2019 at the Lake Forest Graduate School of Management in Lake Forest.

    Throughout the evening, Ms. Nuriddin talked to a full room of TD professionals on the importance of story in the learning process. “The lessons of your life shape you,” said Ms. Nuriddin.  They make you who you are and are entrenched with lessons. If we are aware and are open to learning from these lessons, then we can then share our stories with others, imparting the knowledge we have.

    Why stories?When we share our experiences we tap into emotions, memory, and impact. Stories make an impression because they connect people in empathy, on a deep level of understanding. Good storytelling helps others feel safe to tell their own stories, building on that deep connection.

    But how do we tell a story that engages learners and delivers the message we intend?Intention is the first step. What is it that we want the learner to learn? The answer to this question must guide how we build our stories. We must identify a story that will support the point we’re trying to make. 

    In combing through the stories of our past, we must be careful to look for “lessons, not legends.” According to Ms. Nuriddin, a legend is a story where you’re 100% the hero or 100% the victim. In legends, there is no growth. There needs to be balance between hero and victim to show personal development. We learn more from “growth than glory.” For the lesson to have impact, we need to connect via the lesson being similar to that of the story andby demonstrating change with a theme that is relevant to the message we want to impart.

    To assist in building a good story, Ms. Nuriddin shared tools such as guidelines for selecting stories, timelining to structure your story, and the story spine.

    Selecting stories - listen with empathy; storytelling is about you, but not for you; the learner is risking more than you; the goal is to motivate transformation.

    Timelining - draw a line; identify the key event; identify leading events that allow the key event to be possible; identify consequential events that occurred as a result of the key event. You want to anticipate reactions to the story and determine where the lesson appears in the story - beginning, middle, or end. Always lead with what people can relate to, or what is true vs. what is the truth.

    Story spine - the building blocks for creating your story:

    • Once upon a time…beginning
    • Every day…beginning
    • But, one day…the event
    • Because of that…middle
    • Because of that…middle
    • Because of that…middle
    • Until finally…the climax
    • And, ever since then…end

    You can practice using the story spine by going to https://www.storytrainingonline.com/storyspine.html

    Last, Ms. Nuriddin urged participants to focus on keeping it REAL:

    • Release - you have to let your story go
    • Engage - talk to your learners about your story; ask questions first to make sure you’re telling the right story; listen with empathy
    • Adapt - if it’s not what they’re talking about, stop
    • Learn - if you haven’t learned anything, you’re doing it wrong

    Ultimately, the stories we tell can entertain, but by focusing our intent, a well-structured story becomes a training tool that engages learners with lessons that will stick with them long after the training is over.

    To learn more, read Storytraining: Selecting and Shaping Stories that Connect by Hadiya Nuriddin at http://www.hadiyanuriddin.com 

    Jimel Razdan is a Sociologist, instructional designer, trainer, and author. She has over 15 years of training and development experience, and her specialty is building training programs to support customer service in a variety of fields. 

    Connect with Jimel via LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/in/jimel-razdan-1217a15) or e-mail (jrazdan@gmail.com).

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