Using immersive learning technology to improve skills acquisition

We learn new skills through repetition.

When we repeat actions with the intention of getting better, we call this practice.

It works, but it’s laborious, and without guidance can lead to bad habits, poor technique, and – most often – failure. That means lower confidence, lower performance, and self-limiting beliefs.

As learning professionals we can improve the effectiveness of this process by providing the right knowledge and structure, and then through coaching as skills are practised, reflected upon, and new mental models developed.

The problem now is that it’s not realistic to scale this level of support for a whole organisation.

This is where technology comes in.

Dr Doug Seifert and the team at Syandus are leaders in immersive learning technology. This is about using AI to scale up the practice-plus-coaching model at a fraction of the cost of getting real people to do it.

In this podcast I talk to Doug about how it works.


 Doug Seifert

Douglas Seifert, PhD is the founder and CEO of Syandus. He founded Syandus 15 years ago to create a new way to learn. By combining cognitive science with game technologies, Dr. Seifert focuses on providing scalable ways to solve issues related to knowledge retention and skill acquisition … read more about Doug here.

The before and after: how to deliver a training programme where everyone wins

Despite our best efforts, our thorough preparation, and our fantastic facilitation, sometimes training programmes don’t go as well as we hope. Sometimes people turn up with quite different expectations of what the event is all about, or they feel like political prisoners who have been coerced into attending by managerial pressure, or perhaps they are seeking to spend a day playing with their phone instead of working!

In this podcast Sunita Sehmi talks about her approach of engaging before, during and after the programme to ensure that the event is as successful as possible for the organisation and for the individuals who attend.


 Sunita Sehmi

Sunita Sehmi is a Certified Executive Coach, Consultant, Speaker and Trainer. She is of Indian origin and was born in London before moving to Geneva in 1992. She has a Psychology degree, specializing in Occupational and Developmental Psychology and a Post Graduate certification in the Development and Training of Adults from the UK. She also has a Masters in Human Resources, Coaching and Career Management from HEC University of Geneva … read more about Sunita here.

Want to see performance transformation from your training? Do action planning!

Time is running out and you’ve got so much more content to squash in to the training course … what can you do? Easy, just drop the action planning session you have penciled in for the end of the day!

According to Emma Weber, expert in learning transfer and author of two books on the subject, this would be exactly the wrong thing to do.

In this episode – the longest Trainer Tools podcast by a country mile – Emma explains how action planning done well can be the key tool in ensuring knowledge and skill acquired on a training course is transferred into the workplace and drives real life proper performance improvement!

Maybe I should have split this up into two parts, but there didn’t seem to be a natural break … so I didn’t. I know it’s long, but I think it’s worth it!

This is a Trainer Tools Essential Podcast


 Emma Weber

Emma Weber is the founder of Lever – Transfer of Learning and developer of the Turning Learning into Action™ (TLA) methodology. Emma’s firm belief, and the platform on which she has built her successful global business, is that the key aim of learning in the workplace is to create tangible business benefits … read more about Emma here.

Using social networks to reinforce learning

With so much great content available freely online, why would anyone bother paying for a training course? It’s almost like people can go round learning stuff, willy-nilly, without us learning professionals getting involved at all!

Obviously that would never do, so what can we do to rise to the challenge of technology?

In this episode of the Trainer Tools podcast, I talk to Larry Reynolds about his ideas for the future of the training facilitator, including his experimental use of social networks and online communities to help reinforce learning.


Larry Reynolds

Larry Reynolds is managing partner of 21st Century Leader, a consultancy that helps managers to have courageous conversations. We believe that courageous conversations are the key to high performance organisations where people love to work … read more about Larry here.

Getting creative with ways to transfer learning back to the workplace

R equals e to the power of minus t over s.

Or, to put it another way, people forget about 80% of what they learn on a training course.

That might not be exactly true, Ebbinghaus’s research and “curve of forgetting” equation is not the most rigorous of science, but it’s probably true-ish and that’s good enough for this podcast!

In this episode I talk again to Roger Greenaway, an expert in experiential and innovative training methodologies. We talk about what “learning transfer” really means, and then discuss some unusual and creative ways of designing training courses so that learning transfer is more likely to occur.

 Roger Greenaway

The example Metaphor Map discussed in this podcast can be found here.

Further materials about the content of this podcast can be found on Roger’s website here.

Roger Greenaway is a specialist in making experience-based learning more participatory, dynamic and effective. He does this by training facilitators in the skills and techniques of active reviewing (debriefing), what he calls “the game after the game”. … read more about Roger here.

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