News (blog)

The ATD New Hampshire Chapter Blog page directly supports the Chapter mission as a venue in which chapter members can share best practices in learning, to promote dialogue, and to generate opportunities for networking and resource sharing.  Members may submit their original blog postings to ATDNHChapter@gmail.com

Please note the comments function of this blog is intended to be a forum in which you can freely express yours views on the blog postings and comments made by others.  Given that, please understand that you are responsible for the material that you post either. The ATD NH Board reserves the right to remove/edit any posts that are inappropriate in nature, are "spam" or contain questionable language. 

  • 23 Sep 2013 11:03 PM | Anonymous

    Start Your Engines!

    When developing your instructor-led training programs, your instructional design (I.D.) must contain a number of key elements for effective learning, including activities that stimulate movement, opportunities for hydration to keep the brain alert, and hourly stretch-breaks to allow time for rejuvenation and fresh air.
    It’s your initial ID that starts to build a class that is solid in structure. You carefully check to ensure the content is dead-on; the format and length are of value to the learner; and you consider your learner objectives (watch this space next month for more great information on that topic!).
    Adult learning research show that students can stay attentive to a tell/direct (“lecture”) format for no more than 15 to 20 minutes at a time. Participants must engage in the material to retain it. Presentations should be punctuated with periodic activities (10-30 minutes duration) to enable learners to become re-energized for the next 15- to 20-minute presentation. What does that mean to you, the instructor? Be purposeful in including learning activities that reinforce the topic you’ve just presented.

    You’ve Got to Move It, Move It!

    We keep our learners energized through movement, therefore we need to create an energizing, topic-related activity at least every 20 minutes. That’s not to say everyone performs calisthenics on the 00:20’s, but rather that we create a reason to move, stand and/or redirect their attention. According to adult learning expert Deb Peterson, “Design an activity that gives your students an opportunity to practice what they just learned. Activities that involve breaking into small groups to complete a task or to discuss an issue are good ways to keep adults engaged and moving. Activities can be personal assessments or reflections that are worked on quietly and independently; they can be games or role playing; or they can be small group discussions. Choose your activity based on the best way to provide the adults in your class with an opportunity to experience what you just taught.”

    A library of learning activities can be found in publications from ASTD; at your local book store; downloadable on line; or at free resources, like this: www.thiagi.com/games. And keep in mind that while there are many fun, interactive games out there, the idea is to keep the game or activity relevant to the topic at hand, and always allow time to debrief.

    You Can Lead a Horse to Water…

    Hydration is essential for the brain. That should be of no news to any of you; however we often overlook this crucial element in training class. We cannot underestimate the importance of water in keeping our brains – especially in a learning environment – functioning at full, alert capacity. Joshua Gowin, PhD, wrote in Psychology Today, “Our brains depend on proper hydration to function optimally. Dehydration can impair short-term memory functions and the recall of long-term memory.” Keep this in mind for morning training sessions, as Gowin goes on to explain, “Over the course of a typical twenty-four hour period, the longest spell most of us go without fluid intake is the six to eight hours we spend sleeping. It's for this reason that I habitually get a drink soon after I wake up.” While we may be conditioned to grab that morning cup of coffee as class begins, re-think that concept and grab a bottle of water instead. Since the brain is 85% water, the brain function depends on having abundant access to water. Experts agree: When the brain is functioning on a full reserve of water, your students will be able to think faster, be more focused, and experience greater clarity and creativity. The solution? Bottles of water at each student’s place upon arrival. And you, the instructor, should be drinking water all day, not only to keep your brain hydrated and sharp, but also to subliminally remind students to drink that all-important H2O throughout your training.

    Sometimes, All I Need is the Air That I Breathe

    Every training class must allow students the opportunity to stand up, get outside, and get some fresh air to renew their energy level (remember in high school how awesome it was to have class outside once in a while? Think of what that experience did for your attitude towards learning!). “Take a 10-minute break,” Deb Peterson states. “It’s important to get adult students up and moving every hour. This takes a bite out of your available time, but it’ll be well worth it because your students will be far more attentive when class is in session, and you’ll have fewer interruptions from people who have to excuse themselves.” And adds this tip, “While breaks are important, it’s crucial that you manage them well and begin again precisely on time.”

    Consider including a break at the end of various activities. For example: “When you are finished with your group discussion, feel free to take a stretch-break. We will begin again at 10:45.” This way, the groups will get the work done (activity) and be allowed to take their bio-break, return a call, or get some fresh air.

    In Conclusion

    Keep these elements in mind when designing your instructor-led trainings – How solid is the content and structure? What activities can I add to keep the energy level and learning alive? How will I encourage all learners, and myself, to stay hydrated to maximize brain power? And when can I add appropriate fresh-air break times to keep the students mentally and physically re-engaged throughout the day? Stay focused on these elements when developing your instructional design so that you can help your learners meet each and every learning objective!

  • 12 Aug 2013 11:54 AM | Anonymous

    Dear Members and Friends of ASTD-NH:

     

    We’re excited about the future of ASTD-NH.  We have had a string of strong programs over the last year and look forward to more valuable events in the fall.  It is summer time, and we have several positions to fill on the ASTD-NH Board of Directors.  While it looks nice to have ASTD NH listed on a resume, it’s even more impressive to demonstrate commitment and success in a volunteer position dedicated to growth and development.  Here’s what our board members experience:

    • Significant contribution to the growth and sustainability of a professional organization
    • Networking with professionals throughout the state who are passionate about advancing training and development
    • Development of their own leadership abilities and resume experience
    • New friendships
    • An opportunity to give back to our organization!

    The time commitment is minimal; approximately 5-10 hours a month. In return you will have the opportunity to put into practice all the things you have ever learned in leadership and communication training while making a real difference for our learning community.

    There are now six positions available for election this year (position descriptions are on our website):

    • President
    • President-Elect
    • Vice President of Marketing and Communications
    • Vice President of Technology
    • Vice President of Chapter Administration
    • Vice President of Program Development

    Additionally, we are seeking general board members who can help with miscellaneous chapter business.  If you know someone who is looking to develop their career in any of these areas (you or a colleague), please forward the following nomination information:

     

    Name

    Position of interest

    Phone number

    E-mail address

     

    All nominations must be submitted to Tracey Osborne at t.osborne@snhu.edu or osbornetracey46@gmail.com no later than Friday, August 23rd. 

     

    Serving on the Board of Directors of ASTD-NH has been an outstanding experience for me and I know it will be for you if you choose to embrace the opportunity.  I look forward to working with you.

     

    Kris Mailepors

    President ASTD-NH

  • 29 May 2013 11:48 PM | Anonymous

    I walked into the May workshop leery of what I could appreciably learn in 2.5 hours.  I walked away with tools for focusing on not only where I can improve but more importantly with a new perspective.  I rediscovered not only the skills that I naturally excel in but how I can wield them more powerfully with a sharpened focus.

    But first let me step back a few paces and tell you about our amazing presenter. Trinnie Houghton is the founder of Rippleffect Consulting, LLC.  Her focus is on leadership development and workplace facilitation. She is HIGH ENERGY and engages the participants from the start. She facilitates relationship management. I may be reading into things, but, I picked up what I perceived  to be her mantra,’ know thyself’ and constantly be the student as you learn and understand your work group.

    This was an active session in all senses of the word.  Prior to the meeting, we engaged in a pre-assessment online from our workshop text: Strengths Based Leadership authored by Tom Rath and Barry Conchie.  The assessment identifies your top 5 strengths.  The training provides insight into how to plot your team based on four domains of leadership: executing, influencing, relationship building and strategic thinking.

    One particularly engaging exercise involving selecting the specific domain where most of our strengths lie.  In that domain we met others who occupied that domain as well. We found our tribe, so to speak. We discussed what it was like to be there. We shared with our collective findings with the larger group who also had the opportunity to query us.  We worked through each of the domains in this manner.  After this exercise,   I had a real sense of what it is like in each of the domains and that each cannot function without the other. It was all presented in a fun unintimidating way and the diversity of the group somehow made us all feel connected.

    We then moved on to another exercise where we randomly went into groups and created a business. In that business we were asked to ponder the beginning, the middle and the end. Our group designed a yoga studio. We named it AHH, OHMM Yoga Studio and proceeded to discover we were all strong in the relationship building domain. From there the middle became executing, what did we need to do to open our business and make ourselves successful? Once we saw our execution we shifted into the influencing domain as our end. We saw that domain as necessary and on-going to keep the business fresh. Strategic thinking, for us became our creativity.  It was so much fun to hear what the others created and shared about their businesses as well.

    All too quickly, the workshop concluded.  My peers and I walked away with an understanding of how our strengths contribute to our work groups.  The scenarios for applying this material in our own training to leverage the strengths that already exists in our own or client work groups are unlimited.  As a trainer, I already envision myself applying many components of this training for leadership development, diversity and team building at every level of the organization! 

  • 29 Apr 2013 12:26 AM | Anonymous

    In 2007, The American Society of Training and Development (ASTD), based in Alexandria, VA sent me an email invitation to become a pioneer Certified Professional in Learning and Performance (CPLP). I was working on my PhD at the time, and my first proposal was a bust, due to conditions beyond my control. I had to rewrite my proposal, and I did not know what I was going to do. I did know that it was going to take quite a bit of time to get my second proposal prepared.

    I reread the email and thought to myself, “Well, if I don’t know what to do for the PhD at the moment, I might as well give this a try.” And so I began the process of becoming a CPLP. I had worked in Human Resources and Finance and thought this certification might help my career advance.

    I read everything that I could at the national ASTD website on what a CPLP certification would require, and how well recognized this was. Truthfully, it wasn’t that well recognized, because this was brand-new. ASTD touted this as being a certification for human resource professionals, including trainers and organizational developers, a certification would be similar to a CPA for accounting and finance professionals. I was working as a consultant at the time. I later went on to become Vice President of Finance at an international manufacturer.

    I filled out the forms, sent my check in, and started working to understand their competency model. You can find the latest one at http://www.astd.org/Certification/Competency-Model, as well as all the information you need to begin working towards this certification.

    How good is the certification? After becoming a CPLP, I was invited to ASTD Headquarters, in Alexandria. The purpose of the trip was for several of the Pioneer CPLPs to review the certification test to look for errors, to improve improper questions, to edit questions with two correct answers, and to improve the clarity of the questions. What a wonderful review of the material this was! Those of us who participated also received credit towards our recertification. Since 2007, whether I was working as a consultant or the officer of a global corporation, this certification has served me well. I trained everyone in the company, I improved performance company-wide, and helped lead the organization to higher profits, better customer service, and happier employees.

    The first step, if you decide a CPLP certification is for you, is to examine the competency model closely. Do you train people? Do you want to continue on that career path? Or, are you becoming interested in instructional design? Although most of human resource professionals could benefit from a CPLP, other managers can as well. Do you manage a department, and want to see your reports improve their performance? Are you a professional coach?

    These questions are important because as you work towards your certification, you are going to create examples of your work, or the work that you want to do in the future. There is so much from which to choose, that you will do better with your program if you know what your career goals are.

    Because much of what I was researching for my PhD applied to the CPLP, I did not look for any study groups. I was fortunate in that I did not need this way to prepare for the certification project and the subsequent exam. I was lucky I didn’t need this type of preparation, because there were no study groups at the time! The good news for you is that if you are a member of ASTD-NH, the board is working to help our members get their CPLP certification by starting a New Hampshire study group, purchasing a set of training books relating to the CPLP, and of bringing you information in this blog. If you have questions, this is where to ask them.

    The CPLP certification has become well known due to the efforts of the Pioneer CPLPs, the national ASTD organization, and word-of-mouth. Advertisements for employment now frequently say “CPLP Preferred” or “CPLP Required”. As the competency model indicates, this program “captures changes driven by digital, mobile, and social technology; demographic shifts; globalization; and economic forces”. Those of us who have gone through the recertification recognize the differences a few years can make, especially with technology. This is a serious certification that you will have to continually work on to maintain. Pick your area of expertise and watch for more news from ASTD-NH about how you can become certified. You will have a very happy day when you can add the initials “CPLP” to your resume and business card.

    Gail H. Devoid, Ph.D.

    A Pioneer CPLP, now retired

  • 27 Apr 2013 12:03 PM | Anonymous
    Our Chapter Vice President, Geoffrey Eichhorn loves this video by Jason Dorsey on generational differences!  What do YOU think? How do generational differences impact your organization?
  • 03 Feb 2013 11:08 PM | Anonymous

    Ask any “money guru” about how much of your income you should donate to charity and you’ll hear a range of 5% to 10% (and sometimes more). And, of course, keeping that monetary donation local would be ideal. After all, in New Hampshire we do have renowned cultural institutions and crucial social organizations (the Currier Museum of Art, New Hampshire Historical Society, Families in Transition, the NH Food Bank, etc.) that contribute greatly to our communities. But I challenge each and every professional in NH to consider donating in another way: By volunteering your time.

    Imagine if every professional in NH contributed 5% to 10% of his or her time to volunteer for a cause he or she truly believed in? Would two hours a week be too much to ask for? The answer: No!

    For those in the training & development industry, you each possess professional skills and knowledge that can be transferred to the community in ways of volunteerism – from Junior Achievement in our elementary schools to adult educational opportunities through ASTD. Some call it an act of kindness. Some call it paying it forward. Some call it an opportunity to network within your community. Whatever you call it, volunteering is a way to:

    • Share your professional knowledge with those who are hungry for it
    • Fine tune your professional (and social) skills
    • Motivate and encourage others
    • Get closer to your community
    • Increase future career opportunities through networking

    Join me in declaring 2013 the year in which we each step up our volunteer efforts! If you are interested in exploring ways to volunteer through ASTD, please contact us at astdnh@gmail.com  – from being a valued Board Member, to presenting a topic at an upcoming public workshop, to assisting with administrative duties – the possibilities are there for you at ASTD! For other volunteer opportunities within your own community, you can visit sites like www.volunteernh.org to explore options from “animal care” to “visiting with the elderly” – and everything in between!

    Take a role in your community in 2013. Get up. Get out. Get involved. You’ll be amazed at how an hour or two a week will make such a huge difference in someone’s life.

  • 10 Jan 2013 12:30 PM | Anonymous

    Are you or employees looking for new tools to manage stress?  Our own ASTD NH Board President Kris Mailepors is hosting an hour long community workshop on identifying and managing "stressors" in our lives.

    The workshop will take place on on Wednesday, January 16th from 6 to 7 pm and is sponsored by Catholic Medical Center in Manchester NH .  This is a FREE event  but advance registration is required.  To register or for more information call 603.626.2626.

    Do you have any free events or resources you would like to share with the ASTD NH community?  Forward the details to us at ASTDNH@gmail.com .

     

     

  • 09 Nov 2012 5:56 PM | Anonymous

    The Souhegan Valley Chamber of Commerce held its' 7th Annual Southern NH Expo at the Hampshire Dome on October 18th.  The American Society of Training and Development New Hampshire Chapter took advantage of the terrific opportunity to engage with not only 200 other business professional services, restaurants, and civil organizations  from all over the region but members of the community to share our mission of maximizing human potential. 

    We look forward to meeting some of you at the next Expo event!

  • 02 May 2012 9:01 AM | Anonymous

    A Perspective on the 2012 New England Area ASTD Conference: Innovations in Learning.

    I travel a LOT.  It seems like I’m never home.  Not that I’m complaining.  I have a job doing what I love to do.  I develop and deliver Security training for a corporation made up of almost 40,000 employees at over 75 locations.  Since I can’t personally touch every employee some of the training has to be provided electronically.  I’m not wild about it. 

    When I engage and interact with learners in person, it’s relatively easy for me to make sessions interactive and entertaining, as well as informative.   On the other hand I find it very difficult to create learning that will be delivered over the network that engages, entertains, and informs well enough to overcome the distractions of phone calls, e-mails, pop-up taskings, and dozens of other distractions that get in the way of learning. 

    That’s why it was such a great opportunity to attend the 2012 New England Area ASTD Conference: Innovations in Learning.  The cost was reasonable, less than $200 for a networking event the night before the sessions and some extremely useful and interesting sessions on Friday.  A few highlights from my day at the conference:

    Opening session – Elliott Massi talked about trends in learning.  For me the most enlightening aspect of his presentation was that he did it from his desk in New York (or was it Florida) using Adobe Connect. He was able to provide interesting and interactive learning from his desk.  No airlines!  No rental cars!  I would still want to be present in person at our larger locations, but could provide personalized training at the small sites more efficiently using this technology.  One key point that he addressed is very close to my heart – that in many cases e-learning provides “training” to keep us in compliance without doing anything to change (read “improve”) performance.  If that seems like a waste of time and energy to you, as it does to me, maybe we need to focus on making mandatory training more effective and measure to ensure that we achieve results.  

    The next session I attended was titled “Training with the Brain in Mind.”  A key point from this session (I have about three pages of notes, so I won’t cover everything) is that when a person feels threatened (even with loss of status) a part of the mind kicks in that activates the flight or fight mechanism and prevents learning from occurring.  Making people comfortable and relaxed is a key to delivering results. 

    The 3rd session of the day for me was entitled “Tips to Yawn-Proof Your E-learning without Breaking the Bank.”  This session applied to all training.  Key points:  Grab attention at the beginning to engage the learners and get the best stories to wrap facts in emotion to change behavior.

    My 4th session was titled “Performance in the Nano-Second” which included methods to minimize interruptions using technology to streamline the constant flow of  e-mail, which tends to interfere with productivity.

    Finally the wrap-up keynote speaker presented some amazing methods to move learning to mobile devices, pointing out that many people coming into the workforce currently neither have, nor will have, personal computers.  He presented several specific methods to make I-pads, I-phones, Blackberries, or Androids useful learning tools. 

    All-in-all I got a lot of information I can use to make my life, and training better in the future without having to pay exorbitant fees and travel expenses.  And yet I need to make another key point - the New Hampshire ASTD Chapter provides periodic opportunities for you to learn how to make your training more effective along with great opportunities to interact and network with other training professionals who can relate to the challenges you face every day.  Check this site for regularly for future content and events.  You can also subscribe to the RSS feeds here in the blog news as well as the “Events” page so that you can be notified automatically on the latest happenings in the ASTD NH community!

  • 30 Apr 2012 1:22 PM | Anonymous
    Did you attend the 2012 ASTD New England Area Conference?  Share your perspective on the experience with other members.  Coming soon: "I Want to Learn New Technology so I can Travel Less", a conference experience, by ASTD NH President Emeritus Steve Rients.
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