3 Reasons to Include Workshops in Your Ecosystem

In today’s rapidly evolving digital landscape, creating impactful and engaging learning experiences is more critical than ever. As the founder and chief learning architect of Mavenzeal, I have seen firsthand the transformative power of integrating workshops into digital learning ecosystems. Workshops, particularly virtual facilitated ones, offer a unique blend of interactive learning and actionable outcomes that can significantly enhance the value of your offerings. Here are three compelling reasons to include workshops in your learning ecosystem.

 

Virtual Facilitated Workshops Provide Actionable Outcomes

The digital age has ushered in a new era of learning, where the emphasis is increasingly on acquiring skills that can be immediately applied. Virtual facilitated workshops excel in this aspect by providing solutions that pave the way for rapid implementation. These workshops are not just about disseminating information; they are about facilitating real-world application.

Rapid Implementation:One of the standout features of virtual facilitated workshops is their ability to deliver rapid results. In a world where time is a scarce commodity, the ability to quickly move from learning to doing is invaluable. These workshops are designed to equip participants with the tools and knowledge they need to implement solutions swiftly and effectively.

Engagement Through Interaction:Unlike traditional passive learning formats, virtual facilitated workshops thrive on interaction. This dynamic environment encourages participants to actively engage with the content, fostering a deeper understanding and retention of the material. The facilitator plays a crucial role in guiding discussions, addressing questions, and ensuring that each participant can apply what they’ve learned to their specific context.

 

They Are Microlearning Assets Focused on One Part of the Process Model

Microlearning is a strategy that focuses on delivering content in small, specific bursts, allowing learners to absorb and retain information more effectively. Virtual workshops embody this approach by concentrating on one aspect of the process model at a time. This method is particularly beneficial in today’s fast-paced world, where being time-poor is a common challenge.

Targeted Learning:By focusing on a single part of the process model, workshops can deliver highly targeted learning experiences. This specificity ensures that participants gain skills and knowledge that are directly applicable to their needs, without the overwhelm that can come from more extensive courses.

Flexibility and Accessibility: Virtual workshops offer unparalleled flexibility, allowing participants to engage in learning without significant disruptions to their daily lives. This accessibility is crucial for attracting and retaining learners who are juggling multiple responsibilities and may not have the time to commit to longer learning formats.

 

People More Than Ever Want a Quick Solution, and the Rapid Implementation Workshop Provides This

The demand for quick, effective solutions is a defining characteristic of our current era. Learners are looking for educational experiences that can deliver immediate value, and virtual workshops are perfectly suited to meet this need.

Immediate Application:The structure of virtual workshops is inherently designed to provide quick solutions. By the end of a session, participants have a clear set of actions they can take to start implementing what they’ve learned. This immediacy is incredibly appealing to those who are eager to see progress in their personal or professional development.

High-Impact Learning in Short Sessions: The condensed format of virtual workshops does not compromise the depth or quality of the learning experience. Instead, it ensures that every moment is packed with valuable insights and actionable strategies. This efficiency resonates with learners who want to maximize the impact of their time investment.

 

Conclusion

Incorporating workshops into your learning ecosystem offers a myriad of benefits that align with the needs and preferences of today’s learners. Virtual facilitated workshops stand out for their ability to provide actionable outcomes, focus on microlearning assets, and deliver quick solutions that cater to time-poor individuals. By leveraging the power of workshops, you can enhance the effectiveness of your digital learning offerings, ensuring that they are not only informative but also immediately applicable and engaging.

 

As we at Mavenzeal continue to evolve and refine our approach to digital learning, the inclusion of workshops remains a cornerstone of our strategy. They are not just an addition to our ecosystem; they are a vital component that enriches the learning journey for our clients. By embracing the unique benefits that workshops offer, we can empower learners to achieve their goals more efficiently and effectively, driving forward our mission to share and advance knowledge in the digital age.

Providing Tiered Offerings for Every Stage of the Learning Journey

Providing Tiered Offerings for Every Stage of the Learning Journey

As a coach or consultant, your goal is not only to deliver value but also to cultivate long-term relationships with your clients. In this context, understanding the Ascending Transaction Model becomes a critical aspect of your strategy. This model represents a strategic approach to customer engagement, where you offer your clients a series of products or services, each of increasing value, complexity, and cost, as they progress along their learning journey. 

Imagine a staircase. The first step might be a free or low-cost offering, like a lead magnet or an introductory webinar. This step serves as an initial point of contact, a way to capture the interest of potential learners and provide them with immediate value. It’s a low-risk proposition for them, but it also opens the door for deeper engagement.
 

As clients ascend the staircase, they encounter progressively more advanced, detailed, and value-rich offerings. Perhaps the next step is a low-cost eBook or mini-course, followed by a more comprehensive course or program, and finally culminating in high-ticket offerings like one-on-one coaching or consulting services. At each stage, you’re delivering increasing value, helping clients solve more complex problems and achieve more significant transformations.
 

Consider the journey of a small business owner seeking to improve their digital marketing skills. They might start with your free webinar on “10 Top Tips for Digital Marketing Success”, where they pick up valuable insights and start to see you as a trusted authority. They’re then ready to invest in your eBook, “The Comprehensive Guide to Digital Marketing”, where they delve deeper into the topic. As they continue to grow and face more complex challenges, they enroll in your full Hybrid Authority Program on “Mastering Digital Marketing”, and eventually, they might even engage your one-on-one coaching services to get personalized advice and support.
 

The Ascending Transaction Model is a win-win for both you and your clients. They get to ‘try before they buy’, experiencing the quality and value of your work before investing in your higher-tier offerings. For you, it allows you to nurture relationships with your clients gradually, providing ongoing value and building trust, which ultimately leads to higher client retention and lifetime value.
 

However, implementing this model effectively requires a deep understanding of your clients and their journey. You need to know what challenges they’re facing at each stage, what they’re ready to learn next, and how you can best deliver that value. It’s not about pushing them to buy – it’s about guiding them along their journey, providing the right support at the right time.
 

Moreover, while the Ascending Transaction Model can be highly effective, it’s also important to be aware of potential objections or challenges. For instance, some clients may be hesitant to invest in higher-tier offerings, even after experiencing the value of your lower-tier products. It’s essential to communicate the value clearly, offer guarantees or testimonials where appropriate, and ensure that each offering truly delivers on its promises.
 

Creating an effective Ascending Transaction Model can seem like a daunting task, but remember – you don’t have to do it all at once. Start with your core program, then consider what lower-tier and higher-tier offerings might complement this program and support your clients’ journey. Experiment, gather feedback, and adjust your offerings based on what works best for your clients and your business. And always remember, the key to a successful Ascending Transaction Model is delivering genuine, consistent value at every stage. Your clients’ success is your success.
 

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Size Does Matter – Implementing a microlearning strategy

Bigger is seen to be better. In our personal lives we want bigger things. A bigger house, bigger boat, and a bigger pay packet. In business, we also want bigger things. Bigger group of customers or clients, bigger volume of sales, bigger profits, a bigger return on investment. But bigger is not better when it comes to learning. Bite-sized is better. Bite-sized learning (or microlearning) means we are focusing on less information, but getting better learning, better outcomes and better returns.

Microlearning is part of the solution.

Our world is changing. Technology is rapidly changing. We have greater access to information as we need it. How we are consuming information is changing. We have more interruptions/distractions affecting how much information we learn and retain. Learners can be easily overwhelmed by the volume of content pushed at them in training.

Microlearning allows for better learning. It allows us to provide the core information that is needed to fill the performance gap, to focus on the essential information needed to perform a task without the distraction of other less relevant (and often irrelevant) content. Learners will have greater retention, application and transfer of learning. This will result in better outcomes. It is also cheaper to develop, which with the better outcomes, will result in a better ROI.

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Microlearning means we are focusing on less information, but getting better learning, better outcomes and better returns.

The benefits of microlearning

There are numerous benefits to implementing a microlearning strategy, including:

Reduces cognitive load

Brain based study has shown that “physiologically, your neurons are keen and alert for no more than 20 consecutive minutes. At the end of those 20 minutes, your neurons have gone from full-fledged alert to total collapse” (Abreena Tompkins). A microlearning approach means less content is delivered, eliminating the issue of cognitive overload.

Pulled not pushed

Microlearning allows for learners to pull the pieces of content they need. Not have content pushed at them. This provides greater opportunity for personalisation.

Focus on the core

The Pareto Principle or the 80/20 rule applies equally as well in learning. 20% of the learning provides 80% of the results. By stripping away the excess, we can focus on the core information that will be retained, applied and impact on business performance.

What is microlearning?

Microlearning incorporates small bite-sized learning. It is learning that is targeted to a specific learning objective, includes a focused learning activity and is part of a larger strategy.

An effective microlearning strategy will be made up of:

  1. Microcontent – small bites (up to 7 minutes in length) of easily consumed content.
  2. Microactivities – structured activities that allow the learner to apply the knowledge
  3. Micromedia – tools such as twitter, vine, yammer to allow social interaction
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Microlearning is made up of microcontent, microactivities and micromedia.

Implementing microlearning

Microlearning is not a single learning event. It’s not simply compressing a full day workshop into 90 minutes, or converting an hour long online training piece into a 5 minute video. Microlearning is a strategy, a process for short bursts of easily consumed (and retained) content to be provided to learners.

It includes:

  1. Engage – take steps to prepare the learner and engage them in the content.
  2. Consume – where learners consume the content.
  3. Action – where a microlearning activity takes place.

“Not that the story need be long, but it will take a long while to make it short.” Henry David Thoreau, 1857.

Microlearning is an effective tool for greater retention, application and transfer of learning. But it’s not a simple quick fix. Building quality bite-sized content can take more time than traditonal elearning, but will have a greater impact.

The following seven step process can be applied to implementing a microlearning strategy:

  1. Evaluate
    Determine what courses and content you want to convert to microlearning. Analyse the organisation’s needs and determine the behaviour that needs to be changed.
  2. Prepare the learner
    Prepare the learner for a different style of learning. Engage them and get them motivated.
  3. Identify the application points
    Determine the key pieces of content that learners will need to know and the key activities they will perform to meet the performance objectives
  4. Identify the organics
    These are the stories and other elements that give life to the content. The elements that give the content some context.
  5. Identify the extras
    This might be job aids or any otther extra information that learners could link to.
  6. Trigger the action 
    Develop microactivities that relate to the context, that learners can apply the knowledge.
  7. Evaluate
    Evaluate the outcomes. Review, tweak and repeat.
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Making it Bite Sized

For too long training and learning events have been too large, requiring learners to try (and usually fail) to remember large pieces of content. Bite sized learning provides content in smaller easily consumed chunks of content.

‘Divide each difficulty into as many parts as is feasibly possible and necessary to resolve it’ (Descarte).

Descartes must have been a fortune teller because he describes our modern lifestyle. No longer does a whole music album get purchased, rather just a song. People read articles not the whole magazine. For the modern day learner, bite size is the right size. Brain based study has shown that “physiologically, your neurons are keen and alert for no more than 20 consecutive minutes. At the end of those 20 minutes, your neurons have gone from full-fledged alert to total collapse”. Not only is bite sized learning beneficial for your brain, it provides an opportunity to learn in a time effective manner in our busy day to day lives. Learners and managers are demanding more effective and efficient learning times due to rapidly changing topics, on-the-job performance needs, an abundance of mobile learning tools and faster and more reliable internet connections. Bite sized learning provides the time challenged learner with a greater opportunity to access the content they need in the small spaces of time they have available. So, why is bite size the right size and how does it achieve better training, outcomes and returns?

  • Bite sized training is easier to remember, reducing the cognitive load on participants
  • More effective use of time, focusing on smaller specific need to know pieces of content
  • Time spent on learning is more compact and targeted resulting in more cost effective training
  • Bite sized content is easier to update, with
  • Bite sized learning objects are more mobile and transportable, able to used in different courses or learning environments

What can you do to ensure your training is bite sized and the right size?

  • Make sure new concepts can be presented in segments so natural breaks can be inserted
  • When designing new training, consider how the training would look if presented in different modalities and easily recreated
  • Ensure it is very easy for participants to get the concept really quickly with relevant visuals and aesthetic considerations
  • Build your courses from your key facts
  • Make feedback about your course length a priority
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