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How to make blended learning a success in today’s workplace

How can trainers create an engaging blended learning program? Andrea Vimercati, a senior training manager at Adjust, shares his insight.

Andrea Vimercati has been working in professional education and in learning and development for eight years. Now a senior training manager, he’s responsible for a three-week onboarding program for new hires at Adjust – the global leader in app marketing, fraud prevention, marketing automation and cybersecurity.

Adjust’s three-week onboarding program brings new hires from around the world to their Berlin HQ. Throughout the program, Andrea uses Kahoot! as an e-learning tool to introduce topics, test understanding, and reinforce knowledge. Andrea and his team also use Kahoot! to track progress and identify knowledge gaps. Learn more about how Adjust uses Kahoot! to continuously improve their onboarding program by reading their success story.

In this article, Andrea shares tips for creating an engaging blended learning program that puts the learner at the center of every session.

The importance of taking a blended learning approach

When I started in the learning and development industry, there was a feeling that technology was going to replace live sessions. At one point, it looked like e-learning was going to be the way of delivering training and instructor-led sessions would soon be phased out. But this hasn’t happened, and I don’t think it ever will.

The focus, instead, has shifted towards a more blended learning approach. Today, trainers in all industries use a variety of traditional and digital strategies to deliver their content. By blending these methods, they’re able to create an engaging learning experience that meets the needs of today’s workforce.

The advancements in blended learning techniques and tools has been phenomenal. Now, we can harness the power of in-person sessions and e-learning to achieve great results in everything from onboarding new hires and building a company culture to improving training and development.

Design an engaging and relevant blended learning program

Even though the blended learning approach includes traditional instructor-led sessions, a trainer shouldn’t resort to just talking their way through a slide deck. Each session should be as interactive as possible. Remember, most learners only have about a 20-minute attention span, so using tools like Kahoot! is a great way to boost engagement and increase focus. In sessions, people should interact with you as a trainer and collaborate with each other as much as possible. I always recommend setting plenty of interactive exercises as they help engage learners in any topic.

It’s very important to make the whole blended learning experience engaging and relevant. The best trainers are able to understand why a topic is important and understand how to make that relevancy come through in the session.

For the training to be successful in a corporate environment, participants have to feel that whatever they learn is going to be useful for them. The training has to either solve a problem they have or give them – like we do at Adjust – the tools and knowledge to be successful in their job.

Most learners only have about a 20-minute attention span, so using tools like Kahoot! is a great way to boost engagement and increase focus.

Ensure your sessions are learner-centric

This may seem trivial, but remember: The learning experience is not about the trainer – it’s all about the learner, so make sure each and every session is centered around them. Again, it’s important that sessions are relevant to learners and meet their needs.

Being able to explain tricky topics in a simple way is a key component of putting the learner at the heart of your session. For example, at Adjust, we take a very complex product and break it down into manageable chunks of information that people can understand. The easier to digest the information is, the more you help participants through the learning process.

Stay up to date with product changes and industry trends

One of the biggest challenges learning and development professionals face is keeping both ourselves and our content up to date. This is especially challenging at Adjust, as our product is constantly evolving, with new features being added all the time. It’s definitely a challenge to ensure our training sessions reflect all product changes.

Therefore, it’s important that the trainer is striving to continuously improve – from keeping up to date with product updates to reading the latest trends in learning and development. I regularly read blogs like E-Learning Industry, The E-Learning Coach, and the Training Industry. There are also a couple of books that have really helped me a lot, especially Make it Stick by Peter Brown and Telling Ain’t Training by Stolovitch & Keeps.