Catching Up With the Times


HRM Online recently posted an article on the power of using video as a Human Resources communications tool. As a training tool, video has been around for a long time. Videos done well, however, have not.

Click here to read the article.

At first read, the notion that companies should be using video in order to communicate organizational messages seems a bit obvious. Upon reflection, however, using video as a platform for workforce training through effective messaging is not something that just ‘happens.’

Many of us have sat through video sessions on a variety of training requirements. While the information provided through the medium of video training may be useful, there is a significant lost opportunity if the production value of the video is shabby. There is limited transfer of effective training when the medium of the video itself is poorly constructed, filmed, edited and produced. In addition, a second opportunity may be lost in the disconnect between poor video content and organizational leadership goals and messages.

Nobody wants to sit through a twenty-minute fuzzy video clip of the organization’s talking head reading from a script as a training tool. The days of shoddy production and poor messaging are over.

Our workplaces are filled with sophisticated video consumers who have come to expect a certain level of video literacy from the source providing the medium and the message. When the organization fails to live up to this expectation, more than the content of the product is lost.

In order to meet these expectations, the Human Resources professional has an opportunity to support the development of video literacy in organizational leaders. Vern Oakley’s book, ​Leadership in Focus, provides direction on how to capture effective messaging and captivate the workplace audience in order to meet organizational goals.

Click here to read a summary of Leadership in Focus.

It is time for a change through the medium of video training, and time for a leadership close-up!

Discussion Questions:

  1. Describe a video training session that you found to be effective.
  2. How can video training tools provide organizational messages?
  3. If you had to produce a video training tool for your current workplace, how would you proceed?

Is Experience the Best Teacher?

Source: Patsy Michaud/Shutterstock
Source: Patsy Michaud/Shutterstock

We have often heard the expression ‘walk a mile in my shoes’ when someone wants to relay how a certain experience has affected them.  Usually, the experience was unpleasant, challenging, or just very difficult and we want to have someone else understand how we felt.  Why?  Sometimes, when we experience a difficult situation we want to talk about it just to complain,  but we also talk about our negative experiences because we don’t want to go through that experience the same way, again.  Having a negative experience, especially one that causes us discomfort, is certainly a key factor in changing our behaviour in order to avoid repeating the same experience in the future.  One hopes that what we learn for ourselves, we might help others with as well.

Listening to someone’s negative experience is very different from living through the actual experience itself. A very effective training design technique which implements experiential learning, is being used at the Michener Institute for Applied Health Sciences.  An “aging simulation suit’ is being used to train future healthcare practitioners.  The suit is designed in such a way that it literally allows someone to walk in the shoes of an aging person and to learn, through personal experience, what it physically feels like to be a patient or a client in a healthcare setting.

Click here to read the article and watch a video

Discussion Questions:

  1. Besides healthcare, what types of industries would benefit from having this type of sensory aging & mobility training provided to their employees?
  2. Have you changed something in your own work style because of how you felt someone treated you? What did you change and why did you make that change?
  3. From a customer service perspective, what other types of training tools could be used to relay the experience of aging?
  4. Why is this type of experiential training effective?