It happened to Yvon Golbach. Before the pandemic hit, her trainers regularly flew out to locations all over Europe and Russia, where her training and consultancy agency, Zest for Work, provides her customers with a variety of training courses. The agency specializes in personal energy and resilience and contemporary talent and career management. Were these topics suitable for online training? “The lockdown forced us to embrace blended learning,” says Yvon. “Our programs heavily rely on reflection, awareness, and self-management. I didn’t believe it was possible to tackle these matters online and maintain the same level of quality and depth.” How does Yvon feel about this more than eight months later?
Language capabilities, white label option, and support
After having compared a myriad of programs, Yvon opted for LearningStone. “It’s very easy to set up the blended learning platform in a modular way,” she explains. “On top of that, it provides brilliant options, such as language capabilities. I need the latter because I operate in the international market. At our request, LearningStone has made the blended learning platform available in Russian and currently works on a Polish version, which we need as well. This service option is really great — as is the white label option, which allows us to offer programs in the look and feel of a customer’s company.”
Moreover, LearningStone is fully tailored to an individual participant’s location: “It goes beyond language. When a participant logs in on the platform, they see everything in the right time zone. I think that’s wonderful.”
As a relative newcomer in the field of blended learning, Yvon occasionally needs to contact LearningStone for support: “I’m really happy with it. The support department responds quickly, offers good support, and takes my questions seriously. To me, these are important advantages!”
The golden combination: synchronous and asynchronous
Although Yvon likes to work with LearningStone’s blended learning platform, the switch to online training took some getting used to: “We’re still in the process of learning and fine-tuning. At the same time, we’ve discovered a range of new possibilities. Flipping the classroom, for example, is crucial: if you enable people to learn independently, your training courses will benefit. It’s possible to upload videos and reflective questions that hold participants’ attention in between sessions. Our participants’ reviews show they really like completing these smaller assignments. And the result is a greater learning effect.”
To achieve the latter, it’s paramount that you properly combine the synchronous and asynchronous parts. “We provide assignments that encourage reflection,” Yvon explains. “Then we discuss them live in the online classroom, where there’s room for reflection, connection, and peer-to-peer coaching. The blended learning platform offers lots of possibilities, though. This means you should be careful not to overwhelm people. But if you create the right combination of synchronous and asynchronous, the measurable effect of interventions is greater. I never would have expected that!”
More about Zest for Work
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