I'm in Atlanta for Training 2015. Our friend Cammy Bean so often live blogs other people's conference sessions, including some of mine, I figured I'd return the favor.
"How can we write better programs?"
-Aim for short & snappy
-How do people talk to each other? Write like that. Use a lighter, accessible tone.
It's really critical to know your audience
(Form follows function) Comic books are fun and can support the fun affect.
-We are storytellers - that's why writing is so essential.
"It's all about the people, man. Sitting at the other end of that computer is a person. We need to make it accessible, conversational. What if you were sitting having a cup of coffee with someone and talking about this topic? Capture that tone.
-Object to learning objectives. These are objectives for the designer. Learners don't need these and won't read them -- and it's not how we talk to each other. (Jane: I have never had a boss ask me to "list" anything.)
- Read it out loud. Would YOU want to listen? That helps a lot with cutting jargon, wordiness. Make it something that's appealing to you. If you think it's boring, others will think it's even more boring.
- Inject humanity by letting real people talk. Use iPhones if you need to: "Here's what I think." "Here's my perspective" "Here's how I do that." Work out loud/show your work.
- Tell great stories. See Heath & Heath's Making Things Stick . Use stories to help someone step into another's shoes. It will help them remember, will help with subsequent practice.
- Grab attention w tales of risk & intrigue. Provide a cliffhanger. Set up a curiosity gap.
- Find stories by asking questions of SMEs: Where do people get this wrong? What do people want to DO? Where can they get more information and help?
-"Ask your experts to think out loud. Get them to narrate their work and walk you through the process."
-"Have the SME tell you the story of their slide deck."
-Use the words they SAY, not the words they write. Get it in their words.
- Activate your writing -- go for engaging, active. Pull the learner through a great story. Connect the dots so the story flows from one piece to the next.
- Cut the blather; focus on doing.
- Write the neverending story. Elearning may just be the beginning -- help learners take the action out into the real world.
-Clear call to action: get them to think about how they will change their behavior.
Learn more at cammybean.kineo.com. Today's slide deck is available on Slideshare.