A recent article in E-Learning Solutions Magazine caught my attention:
“We spend a lot of time in this business talking about how to do things: build it, program it, deliver it, launch it, or sell it. We don’t spend much thinking about what to do after we’ve actually done it. Consider investing more time in working toward improving in the future, reconciling your walk with your talk, and building your role as practitioner in a professional pursuit.”
Reflections and lessons learned log is one of the best uses of an LMS in a company. It is also one of the most powerful forms of e-learning, especially when done collaboratively. The sweetest payoff from this deliberate disciplined effort is a greater ROI. Yes folks, reflections, logs and heuristics help drive sales in company. Here’s how a simple LMS and determination drive your sales.
Reflective Practice to Enhance Company Performance?
For starters, choose a knowledge management, team collaboration tool suitable for companies like yours. The layout of the dashboard should be simple and easy to learn and use. Migrate all employees in this collaborative tool to exchange ideas and comments.
“I was surprised at the ease with which my team would share and discuss recurring problems and provide out of the box solutions for them. The goal was to have them post comments and interchange perspectives on new solutions. After the learning need was identified an e-learning course to improve performance.”
To keep things tied neatly, I borrowed a Reflective Practice Worksheet to be filled out after each event and conference from Show Your Work: The Payoffs and How-To’s of Working Out Loud:
If reflective practice is new for you, begin by ending a task, particularly a big one, by asking yourself some basic questions. Consider things like:
- What do I know about now that I didn’t know when I started?
- Why did this particular (event, barrier, success, accident) happen? How can it be explained?
- What can I do differently next time? How could I have made this go faster, better, more smoothly?
- What political issues emerged?
- A problem I ran into was ___________________
- I fixed it, overcame it, or circumvented it by ______________________
- How did the outcome measure up to my expectations?
- How well did the actual reflect my estimates on time, challenges, difficulty, or people?
- I could not fix, overcome, or circumvent it because ___________________
- Did this highlight any deficiencies in my preparation, training, or skill level? What do I need to do to correct that?
- What assumptions did I make? How valid were these? How did they affect what I did?
- What do I know about __________ now that I didn’t know when I started?
- Why did ___________ happen? How I explain it?
- What did I learn from this?
Finally: Is this something worth sharing via a blog post or coffee conversation or quick video or with a mentor or coach? Who else might benefit from knowing about your experience and reflections on it? And would there be value to you, in way of getting feedback that might help sharpen your vision beyond the subjectivity your own blinders create?
Or if Nothing Else:
If all that’s too much consider just putting an index card in a visible spot and as you finish something take a minute to reflect:
- What was the best thing I did, and why?
- If I did this again tomorrow, what would I do differently?
- What did I learn from this?
Segregating Topics in Reflections for Practice
Collecting the learning needs of your team by letting them discuss topics and hunting for courses to offer in your LMS that answer your employees needs can bring great value and understanding to your company, which will result in better sales. Create a list of social media collaboration tools and let your team edit and use it for daily reflections about their work. By allowing the flexibility to use these tools, you will be able to create a stronger and a more cohesive team. Be more agile, responsive and prepared for new projects, to improve your performance and service quality.
Microblogging and Blogging for Reflections
By definition, a reflection is: “capacity to reflect on action so as to engage in a process of continuous learning”. D, Schon. Re-enacting experiences and visions in words, using active vocabulary creates a deeper and a more meaningful connection between what happened and how it could have been better. When comments are made on a topic on a more regular basis, they become blogging.
6 Ways to Integrate Reflective Practice Tools in your Company LMS
Here’s how you can implement reflective practice in your company LMS and enjoy better returns.
Follow these simple steps:
- Broadcasting Company News – invest in a learning management system that supports microblogging and tagging. You can easily spread an internal news to all members in real time. Also, ideas come in the most inappropriate places, and you won’t miss them too!
- Peer Support – We all come with a plethora of knowledge that we are eager to share. A member in distress can share a conflict and request for advice from others. Multimedia links and pdf documents could be just the thing in need.
- Connecting with SMEs – Allocate blogs spots for experts in your team. Encourage members to ask questions. Arrange similar questions under one common topic. This will later be added to your company knowledge repository. No need to reinvent the wheel!
- LIVE Chats – For organizations with employees always on the move, a LIVE chat is a great way to connect. When jokes and puns give way to serious discussion, well-meaning team members go the extra mile to help. Try it out through your LMS.
- Knowledgebase – Using search features in your collaboration tool and LMS, you can retrieve conversations that are similar to your existing question. You can also flag your team if the information is outdated.
- Learning Portal – Creating your own videos for your team members is easier and more private using an LMS or team collaboration tools. Add a layer of microblogging and you have a reflective practice automatically in place.