Now and Zen

I have a bad habit of not being “in the moment.” Instead, I tend to think too far ahead, trying to plan for every possible contingency—one of the hazards of being an editor (and a Virgo), I’m told.

I have a bad habit of not being “in the moment.” Instead, I tend to think too far ahead, trying to plan for every possible contingency—one of the hazards of being an editor (and a Virgo), I’m told. Which is exactly how I ended up breaking my ankle last year. Instead of focusing on carefully placing my foot on the icy last step of my back stoop, I was obsessing about delivering my upcoming celebratory toast for the Training Top 125 Gala in front of 600-plus people. As a dyed-in-the-wool introvert, that was the stuff of my nightmares!

Without a doubt, I could benefit from some of the “mindfulness training” that is making its way into the corporate world. Our “Mindfulness at Work” cover story on p. 18 delves into how companies such as Brighton Jones, Moss Adams, and TimeXtender are looking to the practice as a way to help stressed leaders and employees manage the pressures of a 24/7, “always on” work cycle. And Talent Tips columnist Roy Saunderson explores whether the current mindfulness focus is a fad or an innovative training and personal development exercise. Our “Breaking Bad Habits” feature goes one step further, offering insight into how to instill better habits in your workforce.

Two of those better habits are looking at things from a different perspective and collaborating to find innovative solutions. Our Training 2017 Conference & Expo held January 30-February 1 in sunny San Diego helped Learning and Development professionals do just that. One conference attendee related how he suddenly found himself named manager of Learning Analytics (because he’s good at math!) after the Training department at his company underwent significant changes. He said after attending Training 2017, he now better understands what it is he’s supposed to be measuring. And he now has enough information to write his job description!

The 2017 Training Top 125 Gala, held during the conference, offered winners the chance to congratulate and network with each other. In some cases, that networking actually took place after the event. After a series of changed flights and missed connections, one veteran Top 125er ended up sitting next to a newcomer to the list on a plane and they started chatting. When they arrived in Baltimore with no luggage and no connecting flight, the newcomer—who was with a hotel chain—offered to take the veteran to one of their hotels near the airport for a few hours of sleep. “I had the chance to share some insights I have gained through the years we have been applying, and they made getting home a little more enjoyable…none of which would have happened if you didn’t make the Top 125 happen,” the veteran Top 125er noted in an e-mail to me. See “Ride the Learning Wave” for coverage of the conference and gala, including keynote takeaways and photos from the yacht party celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Training Conference & Expo.

Speaking of celebrations, I’d like to congratulate my counterpart who shares my name—Lori Gardner—on her promotion to associate publisher of Training magazine and our sister publication, Sales & Marketing Management. An honor well-earned!

Our next big event is the 2017 Online Learning Conference—to be held for the first time in New Orleans, September 25-27. To learn more and submit your entry for the 2017 eLearning Design Challenge, visit

Lorri Freifeld
Lorri Freifeld is the editor/publisher of Training magazine. She writes on a number of topics, including talent management, training technology, and leadership development. She spearheads two awards programs: the Training APEX Awards and Emerging Training Leaders. A writer/editor for the last 30 years, she has held editing positions at a variety of publications and holds a Master’s degree in journalism from New York University.