It’s exciting times we’re living in my friends. Behold, a new era of unprecedented diversity – where the places we work at could have up to five different generations working side by side.
Great content is everywhere on the web. For instance, if you wanted to learn how to make a cup of coffee, chances are there will be a good many videos to show you exactly how, infographics to teach you the difference between a flat white and a latte, and if you’re interested, even articles to explain coffee history.
So if we wanted to build learning content quickly, we don’t have to start from scratch. Curating content from the web has emerged as a viable alternative to provide employees with relevant knowledge and information fast enough to keep up with the rate of change.
Yet while curation helps us to build learning content faster, there’s still a fair bit of work that goes into it, fortunately for us, not the back-breaking kind. Curation involves sorting out information that’s available, and showcasing it in a meaningful way around a certain topic. There’s a bit of an art to it, so to help you get started, here are a few tips to check out as you’re on your way to curating great learning material for your teams, or people in your organisation.
Here are our top tips:
#1 Aggregating content is only step 1
Collecting a ton of content is only the first part of curation. A lot of people might confuse aggregation for content curation. However, the goal of curation is not to collect everything that’s available on a certain topic, rather it’s about providing quality information that has been carefully hand-picked to ensure that it’s information that would actually help people in their work.
Once you’ve aggregated content, you still need to filter information specific to a particular audience, and present the information in context for them in order for the content to be useful.
#2 Focus on what’s most critical
When we first start curating, we might develop the tendency to build up this seemingly endless bank of information, simply because we’re distracted by every fancy new piece of content that we find. But we have to remember it’s about quality not quantity.
A lot of times, what’s good to know isn’t what’s good to have. So to avoid overloading people with information, it’s important to determine if that article or video is really critical to include. Here are a few guiding questions to help you decide that:
- Do they know this already?
- Will this help them to achieve the outcomes in their work?
- Is this concisely written/presented?
- Is this relevant and current?
- Can they put this into practice immediately?
#3 Add a personal touch
Curation is also about putting the information into context for the learner. This is the part where you elevate the content that you’ve already filtered out in order to personalise it for your audience.
You can add value to the content by
- including commentary from subject matter experts, or people with more experience in the topic or area of work.
- adding questions so learners after some time to genuinely reflect after they’ve gone through a short module or topic
#4 Provide a variety of content types to engage the audience
Presenting a learning topic in a variety of content types keeps it from getting dull for your audience. It also appeals to a wider range of learners as some might prefer reading, while others prefer pictures to words. So try to mix in pictures, charts, infographics, videos , texts and short activities like quizzes to keep it engaging.
#5 Keep content bite-sized
Bite-sized content that can be consumed in less than 10 minute sessions appeal to employees short on time. Nobody has the time or maybe even wants to read a long academic paper during their workday. What employees need are quick hits of information or short paragraphs with detailed knowledge; basically content that they can easily and quickly jump in on, anytime they can get within their busy schedule.
#6 Actively check for feedback
Use feedback from polls, surveys, interviews or even the analytics features of the online platforms you use, to gauge which content are most helpful or more popular with your audience. With some information, you’re at least better positioned to make adjustments to your curation strategy.
Are you curating content in your teams? We’d love to hear some of your tips!
One of the major L&D trends for the year is the shift from thinking of learning as made up of individual learning events to learning becoming part of the lifestyle that employees partake in within the organisation.
Learning as a lifestyle is about daily continuous learning. It represents a workplace culture that provides opportunities for employees to learn formally (e.g. classes) as well as informally (e.g. conversations). A culture where learning is integrated into the workflow so people don’t have to leave their work to access the knowledge and expertise that they seek to complete tasks, solve problems or achieve goals. And perhaps most of all, it represents a culture that embraces innovation.
We have a culture of sharing. I believe we’ve all been taught to share since we were young… and some of us probably started first with sharing our toys, then maybe our clothes, a little gossip here and there, and perhaps even test answers (oops). And today, we can look no further than our social media feeds to behold this thriving culture of sharing, in some cases – TMI!
The hallmark of a highly engaged employee is one who is continuously learning. According to Timothy Clark in his book, The Employee Engagement Mindset, when an employee is engaged: “They never graduate, and they don’t want to.”
And the most successful companies get this. To keep employees engaged, we have to keep them engaged to their learning. For this is vital to their growth and ability to create value for themselves and the organisation.