Eating our own dog food...
A beloved former co-worker always had a great saying when it came to training - that we (as a learning and development unit, as an organization, as a team) should be ready to "eat our own dogfood." Dogfood to mean not so much a lack of tastiness or quality (ie perjorative) but rather we should be going through the same experiences, eating the same kibble as it were, that we are asking our learners to consume.
Ken, may he rest in rightousness, was on my mind as we recently launched a series of onboarding modules for new hires at my membership organization. This organization asks our members to go through some pretty significant leaps when figuring out what level of membership they should join at, how to build a device using the specification, how to test it, and ultimately, how to adhere to the brand guidelines. So we are now requiring our new hires to be immersive in this expereince as they build and code a simple Bluetooth nametag (scrolling his or her name across the LED screen then pairing it simply and easily), figure out if and how to test it against the specification, and then brand it so that it will not get stopped in Customs. It's both fun and fulfilling for our staffers to contextualize what is abstract (ie the technological specifications) and then better identify the pitfalls and barriers that members may experience in their journey. Hopefully this will also be an exercise in customer empathy. And they will come away with an appreciation of how the work that they do impacts our members.
Stay tuned as I continue to work out loud on this. We will be posting objectives and outcomes in the future.
Onward with the kibble!