Embracing A Fluidic Workforce By 2020: The CLOs’ Challenge

The CLOs' Challenge To Embrace A Fluidic Workforce By 2020 

Digital is now mainstream with every business. While technology is the big enabler of digital enterprises, it is highly-skilled people that define the success of an enterprise. Learning and Development teams have been very successful in procuring a seat at the decision tables. A larger challenge lurks close, mostly unseen and unprecedented.

Intuit Inc., and Emergent Research, in a study, estimated 7.6 million professionals will work in the on-demand markets by 2020. This is more than double the current total of 3.2 million on-demand professionals. 43% of the US workforce will be freelancers by 2020. Hence the emergence of Upwork, Peopleperhour, and more.

CLO teams are pressed to prepare highly skilled and digitally evolved professionals connected to the internet. Sounds like a strange scenario? Well, it's knocking the door. Speculations aside, but the benefits of this shift are immense. Enterprises can now access a smarter, competitive, promising, and fluidic workforce, or Fluidforce, if we may say.

CLOs are challenged more than ever to evolve from a classic learning and development team to a high-engagement “apparatus” that can connect, engage, and empower a Fluidforce. 4 priorities that can help CLOs stay ahead of the game and avoid a digital shock are:

  1. Perform a skill-gap analysis and identify one high-demand role where it is difficult to fill positions.
    Develop a new learning curriculum and deliver it to a pilot group of existing employees.
  2. Use this to understand how to make it more fluidic, i.e., available and omni-channel.
    Consider MOOCs, BYOD, social, and collaborative learning options.
  3. Determine your organization’s training capabilities and how to expand it to accommodate diverse channels.
    Adding new channels to your training infrastructure continuously improves the training outreach.
  4. Finally, create a plan to scale the pilot project across the organization.
    Formalize the training outreach program to make it ready for freelancers and contractors.

CLO teams need to step and pledge to offer an engaging and hassle-free experience to employees and students. Learning and development need to go customer-centric. According to Forrester Data, “If you don’t understand their emotions, you don’t understand your customers”. Managed learning services are key to Learning and Development transformation.

It is exciting to understand what our fraternity colleagues think of this upcoming shift in a digitally connected, fluidic workforce. Comments are highly appreciated.

This post was first published on eLearning Industry.

Top 16 Leadership Books For Chief Learning Officers In 2015

Top Leadership Books For CLOs

Here is the top 16 of leadership books for Chief Learning Officers in 2015:


1. The 7 Habits Of Highly Effective People 

Author: Stephen R. Covey

Summary: If you haven’t already read this book, then you have certainly been missing out. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People is a must for your leadership book library and vital to your leadership growth. This book discusses how you are the creator of your life and how you can focus your time and energy on the things that you can control. It is a top seller with over 15 million copies sold.

What You’ll Learn: This book will teach you the 7 vital habits that every person must possess in order to become an effective and successful leader.

Link: http://amzn.to/1Ir0G4M


2. Leadership And Self Deception 

Author: The Arbinger Institute

Summary: If you learn well from parables and examples, then this book is perfect for you. Leadership and Self-Deception explains the differences between being “in the box” and being “out of the box”, which can symbolize viewing others as objects vs. viewing them as people.

What You’ll Learn: This book will help you learn how to “get out of the box”. You’ll learn how to view the world and others in a different light. Understanding yourself and others will come easier through reading this book.

Link: http://amzn.to/1zUemAP


3. Good To Great 

Author: Jim Collins

Summary: Good To Great  brilliantly discusses why and how most businesses remain “good” and how you can take the leap to become great. Collins begins the book explaining how good is the enemy of great and how 11 elite companies managed to take the courageous leap and how they kept their greatness.

What You’ll Learn: This book will teach you how to take your business from merely “good” to great. Learn how to define your company’s strength and how to focus your time and efforts on that.

Link: http://amzn.to/1yBjlLn


4. Man’s Search For Meaning 

Author: Viktor E. Frankl

Summary: Man’s Search For Meaning  is written as an autobiography about Frankl’s experiences from his imprisonment in a Nazi concentration camp. Frankl discusses how to discover self worth and personal fulfillment even in the darkest times in your life.

What You’ll Learn: Through reading this book, you will learn how to find the worth in life, no matter what situation life seems to put you in. You will learn that joy and suffering can coexist and each individual has the ability to choose who they will become both spiritually and mentally.

Link: http://amzn.to/1BM22Fo


5. Drive 

Author: Daniel H. Pink

Summary: Find out how to successfully motivate not only yourself, but others as well. Drive  dives into four decades worth of scientific research on human motivation and explains the most effective ways to motivate those you work with.

What You’ll Learn: You will learn how to motivate yourself and others without using money or other material items. These new and successful ideas will change the way you think and work with others.

Link: http://amzn.to/1BMfYiz


6. Emotional Intelligence 2.0 

Author: Travis Bradberry & Jean Greaves

Summary: This book helps you understand the importance of having emotional intelligence in the work place. The strategies discussed will help you develop these skills for you to practice in your life.

What You’ll Learn: Learn how to identify your emotions and how to work with them to benefit you. You will be able to identify which strategies work for you in order to build your own emotional intelligence skills.

Link: http://amzn.to/1xSfcjf


7. Principle-Centered Leadership 

Author: Stephen R. Covey

Summary: Principle-Centered Leadership  is the perfect tool to help you identify your authentic core. Covey argues that effective leadership is designed with a strong internal core and he explains what characteristics a principle-centered leader has.

What You’ll Learn: You will be able to understand what it is that makes a leader a principle-centered leader. Learn how to obtain these qualities and improve your leadership skills.

Link: http://amzn.to/1HOozoA


8. The Speed Of Trust 

Author: Stephen R. Covey

Summary: It’s been said that trust is one of the greatest and most admired qualities in a leader. In this book you will see how to build and restore trust in others. Covey insists, “The ability to establish, extend, and restore trust with all stakeholders -customers, business partners, investors and coworkers- is the key leadership competency of the new, global economy”.

What You’ll Learn: You will learn how to build and strengthen trust in those you associate with, as well as restore trust with who have lost it. You will realize how important trust is in every relationship you have.

Link: http://amzn.to/1xG2hCG

Influencer book cover

9. Influencer 

Authors: Joseph Grenny, Kerry Patterson, David Maxfield, Ron McMillan, Al Switzler

Summary: Leading others can be a challenge in an of itself, but leading a team through change can bring a whole new world of challenge. Change is inevitable, which is why this book will help you to understand how to lead during those hard times of change.

What You’ll Learn: You will learn how to successfully lead a team through change. You will understand the meaning of “influence” and why it’s better to strive to influence others.

Link: http://amzn.to/1AGf74K


10. The 5 Levels Of Leadership 

Author: John C. Maxwell

Summary: Leadership is much more than your position or title. According to Maxwell, your title is only the first of five levels of leadership. Leadership merely begins with your title and where you go from there determines what kind of leader you really are.

What You’ll Learn: You will learn the five distinct levels of leadership, how to get from one level to the next and how to become the ultimate leader.

Link: http://amzn.to/1BIOmKW


11. Crucial Conversations 

Authors: Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan, Al Switzler

Summary: There are several ways to confront and hand any and all crucial conversations. However, Crucial Conversations  discusses the best way to approach these crucial conversations that everyone finds themselves in.

What You’ll Learn: Learn how to successfully enter a crucial conversation and leave it feeling accomplished.

Link: http://amzn.to/145Xa29


12. How Will You Measure Your Life? 

Author: Clayton M. Christensen

Summary: This book asks one of life’s greatest and deepest questions. How will you measure your life? Christensen, a Harvard business-school professor, reminds his readers to remember the family while getting caught up in our fast-paced world.

What You’ll Learn: You will learn what really makes you tick, what your purpose is, and how to balance everything you do in your life.

Link: http://amzn.to/14zfOAB


13. The Advantage 

Author: Patrick Lencioni

Summary: Your company may be smart, but is your company healthy? The Advantage  discusses how vital it is for a company to be healthy and exactly what traits to focus on in order to become successfully healthy.

What You’ll Learn: Learn how to make your company healthy by developing the right skills and traits. You will come to understand which areas you need to work on and improve in your company to make it a more healthy workplace.

Link: http://amzn.to/1HUUNP2


14. On Leadership 

Author: HBR

Summary: This book is a must read, made up of different articles on leadership from the Harvard Business Review.

What You’ll Learn: These articles will help you go from a boss to an exceptional leader. Learn from the best how to make these transitions.

Link: http://amzn.to/1tQWOsR


15. The 4 Disciplines Of Execution 

Author: Chris McChesney, Sean Covey, Jim Huling

Summary: Have you ever made a goal and merely watched it disappear without it being accomplished? The 4 Disciplines Of Execution  will lead you down the path of successful execution to all your goals and initiatives.

What You’ll Learn: Learn how to understand why your goals aren't being accomplished and how to implement these proven practices into your company.

Link: http://amzn.to/1FumfoU


16. The 5 Dysfunctions Of A Team 

Author: Patrick Lencioni

Summary: Written in fable form, this book discusses which dysfunctions are most detrimental to a team’s success. There are vital traits that every team must possess, but often overlook. Get to know these principles and how to implement them into your team.

What You’ll Learn: This book will help you understand what issues may arise in a team that will hurt your performance. Learn how to avoid or overcome these issues.

Link: http://amzn.to/1wZhGIX

This post was first published on eLearning Industry.

Employee Engagement Versus Employee Energy

Employee Engagement vs Employee Energy

CLO’s blogger argues that learner leaders should be looking for minion-level energy, not engagement.

“Wait…?” You’re probably thinking. “I thought I was supposed to be driving engagement! My job isn’t to provide energy—that’s what Starbucks does!”

Here is why CLO blogger Kate Everson thinks that we should take inspiration from minions:

For learning leaders, [minions] can also be model employees, energetic, engaged and committed to their leader, the not-so-villainous Gru. Sure they’re just cartoon characters, but they have a sense of palpable excitement that they apply to their employer’s missions. They assemble for meetings with motivated [sic] and filled with curiosity. When there’s no money to build a rocket for stealing the moon, they pool their resources because they’ve developed a deep loyalty to their boss and the work that’s to be done.

Forbes contributor Liz Ryan defines employee engagement as “the employee’s connection to your mission,” which I think perfectly ties into Everson’s description of the minions. The minions feel connected to their leader’s mission, which is what gives them their energy.

So How Do You Achieve Employee Energy AND Employee Engagement?

Everson points to the importance of communication. “For your employees, it might be a kind word from the boss given at the right moment—even more of a reason to teach managers how to identify opportunities to express those magic words of ‘thank you,”  she says.

It doesn’t have to be a high-level manager thanking a subordinate either. Friendly communication between peers can increase the overall energy of the office and unite your team. A learning platform like CourseMill® Wave that lets your employees quickly and easily share content and resources with each other can help increase energy and morale.

For example, I have a proofing guide that I reference for all of Trivantis’s communications pieces. I could hoard this guide for myself and let people keep asking me “What’s the correct way to use a registered mark in this piece?” or “Do we use the Oxford Comma?” or “Wait, what IS the Oxford Comma?” Alternately, I could put this document up on CourseMill Wave, so all my coworkers can access it and answer these questions on their own. And then others could add to that knowledge base. Our graphic designer could put together a style guide of the specific fonts we use on our website, so everyone knows which fonts are okay to use or not. I feel engaged because I contributed to the knowledge base on CourseMill Wave. My coworkers’ engagement increases too when they access my file. In doing so, we are helping each other put together a more professional-looking product, and helping our company. Which makes us more energetic—and our manager much happier. And then we can all run around like minions. Wait no, that’s not professional.

Your office might not need a proofing guide, but that’s the beauty of CourseMill Wave. You can share pretty much any file type through CourseMill Wave. What would you share?

Another idea would be to create a leaderboard on CourseMill Wave where everyone can see it, with your “employee of the week.” Public accolades do wonders for energy and morale—you just might get your own minion! Ryan’s article for Forbes echoes this idea, saying, “We all need acknowledgement and reinforcement. It’s easy to tell when people are turned on. The atmosphere in the workplace is lively.

Want a lively workplace—and maybe a minion or two? Then focus on your engagement and energy levels. Start your free trial of CourseMill Wave today to get employees engaged and energized.

This post was first published on eLearning Industry.

Are Women Better Bosses? Definitely!

Why Are Women Better Bosses?

In the corporate environment, the battle of sexes is a bourgeois, and before I am taken to be a feminist, let me put forth the perspective with some facts.

As per the recent studies, women in the workplace have been rated higher than men on parameters such as: “taking initiatives”, “practicing self development and developing others”, “honesty and integrity”, “building relations, team-work and collaboration”. In that case, the first popping question that comes to our mind, is that why are we not in a capacity to engage and fully employ these consummate women leaders? A probable explanation could be barefaced discrimination, as is apparent.

The Inc. World has men as its majority of leaders (64%), and the higher we go on the corporate ladder; we find an increased percentage of men on senior positions. If we look at medium or small enterprises, there are more men than women bosses. However, according to a recent study by Gallup, 41% of female managers are found to be better engaged at work, compared to 35% of male managers. Since female executives are more engaged and more engaging, it’s apparent that they will cultivate and promote a high-performing environment. The research also brought forward that 33% of executives who work for female managers are better engaged at work, as compared to 27% of those who have male supervisors.

The study also concluded that organizations with women in their board committees make decisions that benefit all the stakeholders and not just the directors, therefore women in the boardroom not only serve the gender equity, but also serve the overall business purpose.

Here are 3C’s that make women more competent bosses than men, and a go-getter tip on leadership skills:

  1. Communicators.
    Women are better listeners than men, and this is the most critical for managing employees and customers. The author Louann Brizendine of the book “The Female Brain”, published in 2006, says that the brain size is irrelevant to an individual’s intellect or communication skills. The deciding factor is “connections” and particularly in this concern, the female brain has more “connections” between the two hemispheres of the brain. The book also says that females have brain cells higher than males by more than 10% in the area of the brain called the planum temporale, which is engaged in perceiving and processing language. According to Dr. Susan Sherwood, women are more discussion oriented in comparison to men who want to just take action. The stakeholders want managers to tune in and give attention to their problems and perspectives and to empathize with them, being a better communicator helps in building stronger relationships based on trust and loyalty.
  2. Community Builders.
    Women are better accord generators and don’t have a high degree of requisite to direct everyone, unlike men. According to a 2013 research involving more than 600 board directors, women are more likely to empathize, consider the rights of others and take a symbiotic approach to decision-making. Dana Ardi, the author of The Fall of the Alphas, speaks of how the traditional top down structure and male chauvinistic authoritarian leader is being substituted by a more collaborative and associated manager. Women have an edge over the men in today's work- place culture, they demonstrate traits like coaching, mentoring, teamwork, empowering employees, sharing information and responsibility, motivating and consulting thus they can be relied on for greater business success.
  3. Composure.
    Women are found to be more composed and patient with employees as compared to men. They take time in analyzing the situation and are less likely to make a prompt decision or take action too soon. A research by a UK-based mobile operator found that men are less patient than women, queuing for just 3 minutes 23 seconds - compared to women at 3 minutes 39 seconds. Another study commissioned in the same regard showed that women are willing to wait longer for a desired result. Generally most small businesses take 5 to 7 years for the so called “overnight success”. Those who can manage composure and be patient enough to take actions, and wait for results, make their journey to victory.

Previous researches have also shown that organizations with women in the boardroom perform better and are less likely to go bankrupt. So WOMEN move out and do wonders!

This post was first published on eLearning Industry.

Savvy Transition: An Online Program To Help Leaders Excel In Their Roles

Savvy TransitionTraditionally, leadership development coaching has been an expensive service reserved for only an organization’s senior-most executives. E-Learning is changing this paradigm by making cost-effective leadership development programs available to leaders at all levels of the organization.

Savvy Transition was developed by the transformation and change experts at Emergent, based on their years of experience working with leaders at Fortune 500 and mid-market companies. The program represents the collective wisdom of highly experienced executive coaches, leadership development professionals, and researchers who have studied the characteristics of successful leaders.

Savvy Transition: An Online Playbook and Toolkit For Leaders In Transition

Savvy Transition is an online structured six-month program of coaching and tools designed to help a leader excel in his/her new or expanded role. The program engages the leader in collaborative efforts with supervisors, peers, direct reports, clients or customers, and key stakeholders. Because a leader’s success depends on forging constructive relationships with these stakeholders, you will find that the program continually directs the leader toward others — for information exchange, alliance building, and visioning work.

Designed for leaders at all levels of the organization, Savvy Transition is specifically targeted to:

  • Existing leaders taking on expanded responsibilities
  • Individuals newly appointed to a leadership role
  • Individuals just hired into a leadership role

The program content enables leaders to more quickly integrate into their roles, and achieve higher performance in a shorter period of time.

Savvy Transition: performance comparison

Savvy Transition Program Content

Savvy Transition is a six-month online program organized around 4 Transition Phases, 6 Focus Areas, 21 Transition Activities, and is supported by 40+ Transition Tools to help leaders be successful.

Transition Phases

  • Taking Hold (Month 1) focuses on clarifying the leader’s role, building relationships, paving the way for necessary changes, and targeting specific factors affecting the leader’s success.
  • Immersion (Month 2) focuses on building awareness of strengths and needs of the leader and key stakeholders. The leader learns to leverage insights about the organization’s systems, politics, and culture.
  • Reshaping (Months 3-4) focuses on assessing team competencies and development needs, managing conflicting agendas, promoting an inclusive culture, creating a vision for the future and securing buy-in for that vision.
  • Consolidation (Months 5-6) focuses on future challenges and opportunities. The leader repairs and enhances stakeholder relationships, builds support for the vision, and measures progress to date and charts the path forward.

Transition Activities Tools

  • The four phases are supported by 21 transition activities designed to help leaders develop practices that they can use the rest of their career. The activities enable leaders to learn and understand core leadership concepts, skills, and techniques, and then incorporate them into their thinking and daily work routines.
  • Embedded in the transition activities are 40+ tools to help leaders analyze, plan, and execute their transitions. Tools are downloadable in MS Word and Excel formats and can be easily customized.
  • A Dashboard provides a snapshot view of the leader’s progress against the 21 transition activities.

Focus Areas

  • Six focus areas help leaders identify critical objectives, work with teams, develop relationships, build self-awareness, understand the organization, and partner with supervisors.

Savvy Transition: dashboard

Savvy Transition Benefits

Savvy Transition provides benefits at three levels – to individual leaders (users of the system), the leaders’ supervisors, and leadership development professionals.

For Leaders

  • Identify critical steps you must take to maximize your success
  • Negotiate with key stakeholders to achieve results-oriented, rewarding, interdependent business relationships
  • Build high-performing coalitions of people who achieve business results
  • Communicate successfully from a strong leadership platform
  • Assess the organization’s culture, your learning needs, and achieve your learning goals

For Supervisors of Leaders

  • Avoid the most common mistakes of leaders
  • Engage effectively with you and other key stakeholders
  • Learn practical skills and techniques that really work
  • Resolve conflict in a professional and productive manner

For Leadership Development Professionals

  • Provide an affordable turnkey solution for your leaders
  • Enable leaders to more quickly integrate into their roles
  • Build a strong foundation for long-term success of your leaders
  • Increase employee engagement and performance by cultivating high-quality leaders

More Information

Learn more by visiting the Savvy Transition website at: SavvyTransition.com. There you will find screenshots and a video overview.

If you are an internal leadership development/HR/L&D professional and would like to request a demo, you may sign-up here: Savvy Transition: Demo Request

This post was first published on eLearning Industry.

How The Chief Learning Officer (CLO) Got It’s Name

Have you ever wondered how the Chief Learning Officer got it's name?

Well, this legendary story starts at the University of Southern California (USC) in 1989 with Steve Kerr. No, not the basketball phenom, Steve Kerr but rather with the Chief Learning Officer, Steve Kerr. While bball Kerr was just starting his NBA career with the Phoenix Suns, our Steve Kerr was striking a deal with one of the greatest corporate leaders of the time, CEO of General Electric, Jack Welch. This 11-year journey began slowly but was then quick to change the face of corporate leadership development. The program that Steve worked on became the most prestigious Corporate Management Training program in the world. The “Aon Hewitt Top Companies for Leaders” has it ranked #1 in 2014.

Steve Kerr - The World's First Chief Learning Officer

Steve Kerr - The World's First Chief Learning Officer

Steve started on this voyage by accepting to consult 25 days a year with General Electric (GE) while still a tenured professor at USC. Steve was the only professor from the West put into GE’s Nuclear company to train on “Work-out” (GE’s Process Improvement and Organizational Change program). Because he was a professor and administrator at the time, Steve figured he only had 25 days to spare. In spite of the expectation from GE that Work-out would go poorly within Nuclear because it is in such a heavily-regulated industry, it succeeded and Steve was to thank for it. Because of this success, other businesses within GE started utilizing his services, including training on conflict resolution and dealing with people.

It took only two years before Steve’s services were in such demand (210 days/year) that he resigned his position at USC. He became part of the Michigan faculty to be closer to Crotonville and the work he was doing with GE. This is also the time that Steve became the personal outside consultant for Jack Welch. Although multiple offers were made, it took four years before Steve said yes and went from an outside consultant to the Vice President of Leadership Development at the legendary Crotonville, NY training facility.

One month into the new position, Steve did a "Work-out" session with some of the top brass. They suggested that Steve be the Chief Education Officer, or CEO, for all of GE. He had fun with this and went to Jack Welch saying, “I’m going to be a CEO just like you.” Jack gave a robust laugh and informed Steve that there can be only one CEO at GE. Instead Jack offered, “You can be chief learning officer.” And that is the origin of the Chief Learning Officer.

The New York Times wrote an article about how GE now had a CIO and CLO and contrasted the two relatively new positions. Steve says, “It was my 15 minutes of fame. Then I had to figure it out. My job became to identify the barriers. What is it about the way we organize work and build rewards? What is it that keeps people from wanting to communicate, and what adjustments in rewards, and norms, and so on would create more motivation?”

Steve is still working with Jack Welch but back in academia at Chancellor University in Ohio,


This post was first published on eLearning Industry.