My mother taught junior high and high school. My father was an elementary school principal. And, I knew from a young age that I wanted nothing to do with education and learning. My, how things changed!
I graduated from college with a bachelor’s in journalism. It took a couple of years in very small markets, that I needed a career that would allow me to afford crazy things like food and gas. So, I moved to a larger city and got my first job as a corporate trainer.
At first a move from journalism to learning and development might seem odd, but it actually makes a lot of sense. Both involve taking large and concept topics and breaking them down to smaller chunks, so people can process and understand the information. Both fields also involve superior communication skills (written and verbal).
I was surprised at how much I enjoyed training employees and teaching them new skills. Whether facilitating or designing, I truly enjoy what I do. It started out as training classes but as I continued in the field I gained additional knowledge, learned new applications and mastered new skills.
- I took it upon myself to learn adult learning principles and classroom management. Skills that I later used to conduct Train the Trainer classes and to evaluate other trainers.
- Through technical training, I developed the ability to learn new software and practices quickly. I have not had the luxury of taking a lot of training classes myself to develop my skills; however, I have taught myself popular eLearning applications and using them to create courses and even teaching others how to use those applications.
- My love of writing has shone through as an instructional designer. I am always writing: manuals, job aids, standard operating procedures, instructor guides. In my own time, I even wrote a book, The Colors of Customer Service, for call center employees. In addition to the book, I created a training guide to accompany it.
- I have developed and delivered management and leadership training as well. Delivering daylong, half-day and lunch and learn sessions to address the specific needs of managers and respect their time.
- I have worked with management and upper level leadership to advocate training for hourly and salaried employees. I have conducted training needs analysis and created training based on those results.
- The great part about learning and development is that it gives me the ability to use my creativity. Whether it is me in the classroom or I’m creating training for others. I’ve developed training in the top eLearning programs (Captivate, Articulate, Camtasia), created training and training reinforcements on social media through post, tweets, blogs, discussion forums and wikis).
- Personally, I am a blogger, podcaster and writer. I would love to have the opportunity to use these skills in a corporate environment.
I am looking for my next opportunity that will allow me to use my experience to manage other instructional designers and trainers, to develop training concepts and to work with managers and leadership to develop training that will meet their needs and engage the learners. I hope you will give me the opportunity to interview and share more about how I can be an asset to your organization.