Posts Tagged Innovation
One of the big debates this morning comes from Yahoo’s decision to bring all of their employees into the office in the name of innovation. The pros and cons of telecommuting, or “working at home”, have been debated for decades, but I believe we are at a tipping point as illustrated by the amount of discussion on this topic this morning.
When considering the merits of the virtual workforce it is not a case of if this works; it’s a case of how this works. As with any major shift in cultural norms and working practices, it takes time. And it requires old habits to be broken and new habits to be formed. I could state the many benefits of adopting a more balanced approach to simply requiring people to be in the office 9 to 5 Monday to Friday, but these are largely already known. The key, though, is in learning how to work virtually, how to collaborate virtually, how to lead virtually, and indeed how to innovate virtually. It can be done.
3GS is viewed as a leader in innovative ways in which to move training out of the physical classroom and into the virtual world. This move to the virtual classroom is also seen by many as inferior to traditional classroom training But we have now shown that we can new approaches to learning can deliver superior results to the physical classroom It does, however, require behaving and thinking differently.
There are so many examples of how technology has enabled us to live our lives very differently, and virtually. I personally coach, from my home office, young adults in South Africa that are among the most innovative individuals I have ever worked with. Just ask any group of teenagers how they collaborate and innovate – oh, and you better do this by texting them as you likely won’t find them in one place for long.
I totally agree with Richard Branson that this move by Yahoo is a step backwards. More however, I think it is indicative of a lack of innovation to adopt the new approaches necessary to make this work.
Recognizing our best-in-class use of the Adobe Connect platform, Adobe recently launched a Customer Success Story about us and how we’re pushing the platform to offer our customers a richer online learning experience.
Check out the writeup on the Adobe Connect Blog, where you can also download the Success Story.
The IDC predicts that by 2013, at least 75 percent of the U.S. workforce will be made up of mobile workers.
This week, President Obama announced the launch of Startup America, a national campaign to celebrate, inspire, and accelerate high-growth entrepreneurship. A partnership between private companies, such as IBM and Intel, and public organizations, such as the Small Business Administration, the campaign promises to provide both an economic and a social framework for economic growth and sustainable job creation.
What I hope Startup America supports is one of the fastest growing economic sectors in the world today: training knowledge workers. A major cost for companies is training: In 2009, more than $47 billion was spent in the U.S. for training services with outside vendors, and $126 billion was spent on training in total. Forty percent of these costs involved bringing participants to a physical classroom, where training takes place. Given the prediction by the IDC that by 2013, at least 75 percent of the U.S. workforce will be made up of mobile workers, it makes more sense to leverage technology for virtual training and save the expense of travel and time off work.
The next step for Startup America would be to include a roster of virtual training programs as an integral part of its support for startups and their staff. Besides saving time and money, virtual training has the potential to deliver a superior learning experience than does a physical classroom. A recent white paper 3g Selling coauthored with Citrix demonstrates that a best-in-class, instructor-led and live virtual training program can engage learners, increase the rate of program adoption and behavioral changes, and improve performance results.
What startups need besides money and mentorship is the ability to provide training quickly and effectively to an ever-growing pool of knowledge workers. We would hope that Facebook—a partner in Startup America, which is hosting a dozen or more Startup Days around the country to provide entrepreneurs access to expertise, resources, and engineers to help accelerate their businesses—will include virtual training vendors in its offerings. And although the field of virtual training is crowded, there is enough variety among training offerings—such as 3g Selling’s use of a broadcast studio format combined with live, virtual training—to satisfy and support startups, as well as established businesses, everywhere.
Martyn Lewis is a principal at 3g Selling, which provides clients with transformational sales training experiences delivered live over the web. For more information, visit www.3gselling.com.