A case for social learning in business

This is a first draft of putting together the case for social learning and social business. Comments and suggestions for improvement are welcome. This was not rehearsed, so I know that the narration can be tightened up. I’m interested in seeing what other points could or should be added and especially if the central theme makes sense.

9 Responses to “A case for social learning in business”

  1. colin jones

    nice presentation

    2 developments of your points

    businesses often struggle to transfer classroom learning into workplace practice because learning needs reinforcement and reflection; SoMe is there when learning happens and is needed

    learning in businesses is often as much about culture development as capability building ; shared stories can reinforce a desired culture

  2. Ann P McMahon

    You’ve done a nice job of explaining how the internet has changed the role of workers in your inverted triangle. I’d like to see you expand on the role of managers. How do you see management and training departments facilitating the conversations of the workers? What connections, attributes and skills set a manager apart from a worker? How might someone acquire/develop those connections, skills and attributes? Are managers always managers and workers always workers in your model? Do you see managers and workers shifting roles adaptively based on the work context, their connections, personal traits, and the connections, skills and attributes they wish to develop in themselves? The answers to these questions might morph the triangle into an amoeba (meant to represent dynamic shape-shifting) and push the envelope farther than you intend for an case-making video like this. Thanks for sharing. I’m interested in seeing the next iteration.

  3. Dan Pontefract

    Hey Harold – a few points (since you asked)

    1) shouldn’t you attribute ‘gaping void’ to the hierarchy lampoon?
    2) on second thought, should you even use this cartoon? might be construed quite negatively if this piece is in fact a ‘business case for social learning’ … ie. you might tick off the business with it
    3) I might set the stage up front for the context of what is ‘social learning’ and come back with it at the end — the oreo cookie approach — the current version, for me anyway, lacks the context of ‘why’ and ‘what is’ social learning … hence reinforcing it at the front and the back of the bit

    otherwise, as usual, sage, wise, succinct and excellent

  4. Brent MacKinnon

    You are hitting the right notes for me Harold. The spot that didn’t reach me or fit for me was the complexity message and slide. Neat picture but the point you are making seemed a bit flat. Complexity is an important theme. Maybe add one more slide that opens up why it’s important i.e. emergent solutions, relations, small pieces connecting to unexpectedly resolve large problems etc.

    I so like your shock cartoon using Hugh’s art. The inverted pyramid model speaks volumes, I like that one and the hierarchy one a lot. Very simple but very powerful.

    The conversation slide is a bit flat for me as well. Conversation is integral to your presentation but it’s such a commonly used word especially in the social media sphere. When you say deeper conversations – maybe something there can be said that brings out conversation more in the way you meant it to mean?

    I’ve said more than I intended. Your writing and work is helping me a lot Harold. Thanks!

    Looking forward to seeing your finished product.

    Brent MacKinnon


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