There Are Simulations and Then There Are Simulations

My 30th in 30 (presentations to ISPI Chapters over the past 3 decades) was held at the JetBlue University training facilities in Orlando on Thursday January 19th, 2012 – on a sunny day – in central Florida – imagine that.

My hosts were the chapter leaders at the new ISPI CFC – Central Florida Chapter – and their hosts were the good folks at JetBlue University.

Beyond the Lobby

I got the nickel tour – very quickly – before going on stage to present on the Processes and Products of CAD – Curriculum Architecture Design – and doing my simple demo on developing a T&D Path (your people may call them Learning Paths) for Sky Caps – which is my standard demo for overview sessions just as in my workshops I do Cabin Attendants (your people may call the Stewards and Stewardesses).

Both are for one of my Case Companies: AAA (Triple A) for Always Airborne Airlines – “we never bring you down” – a little joke of mine from having to fly in and out of Chicago’s O’Hare Airport for over 25 years. Yeah yeah – very little.

In my tour I met some Pilots-in-Training, their Trainers, and the guys on the evening shift at the controls of the Flight Simulators.

Think giant machines on hydraulic stilt-legs from any Star Wars movie – and you’ll get the right visual. Only they didn’t walk around blasting all of the enemy. They stood there and swooped and tilted – slowly.

I saw one Simulator in decent – a nice, easy decent – so I have none of those AAA jokes to offer you here – that followed that Demo Case Company “head of the parade of jokes” typical of my deliveries on CAD and MCD (the ADDIE-like level in my PACT Processes for T&D/ Learning and Knowledge Management. Such as “But when we do bring you back to earth…. (don’t want to give away all of my materials here).

You’re welcome.

If you travel a lot as many of us consultants in the Learning/Training biz – you have your own travel jokes – and not all are really very funny. Gallows humor is a term that comes to mid to categorize them. I appreciate that – sense of humor.

And if you have been traveling long enough you’ll recall white table cloths (OK, napkins) and real silverware (or is it flatware?) – in Coach!

Ah, deregulation – and the laws of unintended consequences.

But I digress.

One of the things I preach about Training and Learning (the means and the ends) is authenticity.

Doing Real Work is the best application exercise – but sometimes it is just not prudent. Too risky and/or too costly.

It was explained to me – and shown to me – that the Pilots practice before and after the Simulator time – on laminated boards and pretend to push buttons and pretend to turn the wheel (aircraft depending) in response to their trainers set up of the situation. Which makes a lot of business sense. Which was something that I also talk about in my sessions on Instruction and Instructional processes.

Note: All photos liberated from the Internet.

Decisions – Decisions

There are a whole lot of Business Decisions in every Instructional design project.

Yes, there are Instructional Decisions too. But there are decisions that Training/Learning folk have no business making but they do – and too often that is the case – that the Instructional-types are asked to make the Business decisions – for which they can only lose – if they make them without collaborating with their clients.

And – any manager that challenges a Training Person about the ROI for a past initiative – is typically providing me a clue that their process is broken/poorly designed or adhered to. For that’s the wrong role to be making those decisions – the decisions to do a project or not – or this one versus that one, etc. They shown a light on that “issue” for me.

Those ROI decisions are Business Decisions.

Some of the many.

What’s in your process?  Look at it in the light of a sunny day.

Does it simulate good business practices and allocate decisions to the right party? 

Best Wishes ISPI CFC!

Next up for ISPI CFC – my good buddy Judy Hale, the current president of ISPI International – and someone I met at the then NSPI Chicago Chapter back in 1981 – when I moved back to Chicago.  And then I served on the Board when she was President-Elect the first time back in 2000-2001. And we’ve been on Committees together – including the Kitchen Cabinet that created the CPT professional designation.

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