Training magazine Events: Let’s Do It!

Recognizing purpose, realizing possibility, and maximizing potential.

By Tony O’Driscoll

At the Training 2012 Conference, we gathered to celebrate the 35 years we have spent together as a community of committed and capable learning professionals tirelessly dedicated to understanding how to leverage human capital to drive business results.

During this conference, we discussed how this particular moment in the relentless unfolding of time is our “moon-shot.” Through our interactions, we realized there has never been a more important time to turn what we know about what works in learning into a focused and deliberate set of actions that will help drive a step change in human performance on a global scale.

We not only came to this important insight at the conference, we had a lot of fun, too!

During our session with Drum Café, we were viscerally exposed to what it feels like to fully engage in co-creation.

In our conversations with Dan Pink and Laurie Bassi, we explored the latest research on how purpose drives motivation and how that motivation can be optimally leveraged by organizations that put people first, engage authentically with their customers, and care greatly about the communities within which they operate.

In our interactions with Omar Wasow and Lee LeFever, we were afforded a glimpse into the future where exponential changes in social, mobile, and collaborative technologies are fundamentally redefining how society lives, works, and learns.

In reviewing the Top 10 Hall of Fame’s Social Learning report, we learned firsthand how our peers are leveraging technology to fundamentally change the game in learning and extend the reach of what we know and do well beyond the traditional classroom confines.

And, finally, in hearing the captivating and motivational stories shared by Miguel Nicolelis, Stedman Graham, and Victoria Rowell, we are left with a very real sense of what a huge difference just one person can make in maximizing
human potential. During our time together at Training 2012, we have recognized that purpose is the foundation upon which all motivation is built; we have realized the incredible possibility technology brings to the maximization of human potential; and we know that the most significant transformations in the world begin with a group of dedicated and capable people who take collective action to implement the change they want to see in the world. We are those people. As learning professionals, we share a passion for helping people grow and develop to achieve their utmost potential.

And, so here we are. Where might that be? Following Training 2012, it appears to me that our Nike moment has arrived. All that’s left now is to “Just Do It.”

I look forward to watching our profession grow in stature and value over the next 35 years as we move from arguing for what we know to demonstrating how it adds value through deliberate action and the power of positive example.

Tony O’Driscoll is the executive director of the Center for Technology, Entertainment, and Media (CTEM) at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business. His most recent book, “Learning in 3-D: Bringing a New Dimension to Enterprise Learning and Collaboration,” explores how emerging Web technologies are transforming the learning landscape within organizations.

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.