Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Complete the Learning

First there came a rock.
Then learning. Then ore.
Then learning. Then metal.
Then learning. Then tools.
Then learning. Then machines.
Then learning. Then factories.
Then learning. Then helicopters.

What was the difference between the first generation of learners and the last?  They all had the same natural resources didn't they? So, why didn't the person who learned about ore just go ahead and build a helicopter?

The same reason that the inventor himself, Leonardo da Vinci, didn't actually build it. The learning wasn't complete. He dreamt up the idea and even made plans for it. He just didn't have the knowledge for how to act on it.

Learning is like a set of Legos. One brick at a time stacked upon another. Eventually you have a remarkable creation like a life-sized giraffe or a replica of the Eiffel Tower.

The question you need to ask yourself is what learning can you complete to help to assemble the next great idea?

Monday, November 28, 2011

It's time to start thinking differently about learning

We recently saw a tweet come across our learning lab that read, "Reading one good books makes you a lot smarter than skimming over 3,000 RSS feeds. (via @gapingvoid)."

While on the surface this comment makes logical sense and rings true to everything we have always been taught. Beware! Things are changing. Books are by no means the only source of credible information anymore. Relevant and proven learning fragments can also be accessed online. And RSS feeds are just one learning strategy you can engage to make that information come to you.

So, in answer to this tweet we simply state, it depends.

If the book you are reading provides all the answers you are seeking around a specific topic, then yes it can be better than skimming 3,000 random RSS feeds. However, if you utilize the power of RSS feeds correctly you could have pertinent information pushed to you that is not only on topic but dynamic as well. In other words, once a book is published it can no longer add new and updated data to its pages. But, a research site that has just published a new ground breaking study can send you new and updated data on that topic immediately. (In this example, the combination of both the book and RSS feeds could be an ideal approach to learning something new.)

Keep in mind that just because we have traditionally been conditioned to believe that experts in a field write books, therefore books have all the answers, doesn't mean that experts don't also write blogs, add to communities, and generally contribute to the Learning Explosion taking place online. (Which can then be pushed to you automatically via RSS feeds.) Read more about why we believe "the community" is becoming the new expert.

So, if you really want to learn something new, keep on reading good books, but also utilize the many online tools so that you can take advantage of the immense knowledge base available to you.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Not All Mutant Wanderers Are Lost

J.R.R. Tolkien said it best, "Not all those who wander are lost."

A Mutant Wanderer will stumble upon something unique. A new idea. A new product. A new process. Something that isn't in their area of expertise, but they stumbled into it and found a new solution to a problem.

But, rather than concealing the information and keeping the knowledge to themselves, they'll share it with everyone. Whether they know it or not, these mutants are creating new learning fragments that become part of the Learning Explosion, fueling it's expansion.

  • Margaret is a language aficionado and has a blog on the topic. However, one day she figured out how to download her Facebook album and posted the instructions on her blog. She wandered into the knowledge and then shared it with everyone. She is a true Mutant Wanderer.
Because many Mutant Wanderers are not considered experts in the information they are creating, you need to be careful of what you accept as fact. Be sure you triangulate this new knowledge with other sources.

  • Vishalicious was a beginner at the bass. He posted on a forum about something he thought he figured out. It seems like good information, but as you read through the comments posted by others you realize that his information is incomplete. His initial post erupted into a classic case of Mutant Learning. Other mutants jumped into the discussion to help teach him and they stayed with him until he fully understood the concepts. That's the power of Mutant Learning!
So go. Wander. Discover and share. Try and lose yourself in new knowledge but remember to return home and share what you've learned.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Mutant Creators Among Us

What do Archemedes, Leonardo Da Vinci, Thomas Edison, Steve Jobs, and Seth Godin have in common? They were all Mutant Creators.

Mutant Creators discover and build new and innovative products to improve the life and well-being of others around them.

They find a problem, visualize the solution and create it.

They answer the questions asked by Mutant Innovators.

They actively create knowledge, products, methods and theories.

They use their minds and their hands to assemble their creations -- with a saw-board or a keyboard.

They don't hide what they've done. They actively contribute to society.

Become a Mutant Creator! How? Start right now by posting a new idea to your blog, Twitter or Facebook account. It's easier than you think.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Who are Mutant Initiators

Mutant Initiators ask questions.

They wonder why it works.

They question what it's all about.

They're curious.

They ask how it's done.

They start the conversation.

Can you answer their questions? If so, join the conversation and create.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Are you a Mutant Learner?

If we told you that you have a choice between becoming a Mutant Learner™ or a Zombie Learner™ which would you choose? Yesterday we conducted a webinar for Training Magazine and Citrix discussing this new phenomenon.

To become a Mutant Learner, you need to know how to rapidly evolve. Rather than using using social media to stumble around from site to site wasting time, you can now use social media (and some simple principles) to learn the most effective ways to find, consume and contribute relevant information to your learning needs. This can be done through something we call a Mutant Learning Lab™.

To see the an archived recording of the webinar and to begin your journey to become a Mutant Learner click here. Be sure to leave us your comments on our blog, on Twitter or on Facebook. We'd love to hear about your own mutant experiences!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

How To Increase Your Professional Online Presence (POP)


Just recently we were asked for interviewing tips by two separate individuals. On further review neither had much of a Professional Online Presence (POP). In today's competitive and technologically savvy world having a POP is essential. There is so much a potential employer can learn about candidates, and so much opportunities for candidates to share about their qualifications and skills. So, think of this short post as a beginners guide to creating an effective POP.

A good place to start would be with LinkedIn. Get as many people as you can, preferably people who you have worked with, to recommend you, and write a positive review. Then join some relevant groups, and enquire about jobs, and look for job postings.

Twitter and Google+ are also great networks to build. Start following industry leaders and tweeting/sharing useful and relevant information.

Some additional online tools you could use to increase your POP are:
1.Contxts.com-- create mobile sms business cards
2. Haganblount.com -- build an infographic resume
3. Snappages.com-- create a personal/professional web page
4. Facesforce.com -- Introduce yourself, your product, idea, business, and more using a webcam

If you haven't already, start creating a POP that pops today. Then confidently share your POP details with potential employers and on your resume.