Keep up-to-date on all things mentoring.

My dad has been at the same company for almost thirty years.  The way older generations were raised is you find something and stick with it. With our generation it is about finding your passion. If you aren’t happy, quit, and find something else! We are much more open to switching majors, changing careers and starting fresh.”

- Julie Strand, age 23, sales representative at C.H. Robinson Worldwide...

Tuesday, 15 October 2013 00:00


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Social learning continues to grow as a practice, with U.S. companies spending on average $13,675 on social learning tools and services in 2012, according to Bersin by Deloitte. What is troubling is that people seem to have differing opinions on what social learning is. I’ve found that social learning is often misunderstood or perceived inaccurately as a free-for-all situation that takes place on social media, where a person might post a question and then cross their fingers and hope that someone answers...

We can all relate to the feeling of not having enough hours in the day to do the work we need to get done.  Or those times in our lives when we convince ourselves that we don’t have time to try something new: from a new software at work to yoga on the weekends, because we are too busy and “already don’t have enough time in the day.” But if we knew that trying the new software could help us get ahead at work or that yoga could reinforce a healthy lifestyle that prevents us from getting a disease, we might find a way to make time for these new activities...

A retiring workforce. Mergers and acquisitions. Siloed functions. A globally dispersed employee base. Costly formal training.  Unidentified employee knowledge assets. In last week’s webinar hosted by HCI, we learned that these are the business challenges that URS, a fully integrated engineering, construction, and technical services company, solves with social learning, enabled by River.  If you couldn’t make it to our webinar, don’t worry...

Wednesday, 25 September 2013 00:00


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Businesses today operate in an era marked by increased complexity and competition.  With organizational hierarchies flattening, every worker in your organization is becoming more autonomous and increasingly responsible for making daily decisions that can alter the course of the corporation--for worse or for better. For this reason, it’s important to ensure that everyone throughout your organization has the timely knowledge they need...

Tuesday, 17 September 2013 00:00


Written by Kristin Boe

Think your Millennial boss has some room for improvement? A recent article by CNBC says you are not alone; only 5% of the current workforce thinks that Gen Y is ready to lead. And the Millennial-damning statistics don’t end there. A recently published Ernst and Young study, featured in the article, reveals that the prevailing perception in the workplace is that Millennial bosses aren’t overly effective; in fact 68% of survey respondents think Millennials...

Tuesday, 10 September 2013 00:00


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“Business leaders are keenly aware that social is becoming the primary tool that people use to share information or create knowledge.”  These words of wisdom come from a recent MIT Sloan Management Review research study called, “Social Business: Shifting out of First Gear.” While companies may acknowledge that social is the primary tool they need to use, how do companies get started...

What I’ve learned spending my career in the talent and learning industry is that there is never one system that can be an organization’s entire solution in terms of organizational learning. One system does not yet exist that effectively spans 100% of the 70:20:10 learning continuum and effectively support all the various nodes of learning (formal, social, and experiential). More often than not, large organizations require “Best of Breed” systems that support of the various learning nodes and that work together in harmony...

Tuesday, 27 August 2013 00:00


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In the late 1980s, I was hired to do some executive leadership development consultancy work at a large Fortune 500 company. I remember being on site and walking down a hallway, which was lined with portraits of past company officers and executives, on the way to the executive office area. What struck me as truly rudimentary during my stroll down this hallway was the lack of diversity represented in the portraits. I have to believe that this company has since taken these paintings down, given the fact that all the subjects...

Tuesday, 20 August 2013 00:00


Written by Kristin Boe

The Millennial generation, to which I belong, is 80 million strong, and it is estimated that we will make up 50-75% of the workforce by 2020.  Now, I don’t think that the Millennial generation will cause any Tsunami-like destruction (except maybe to outdated corporate practices and policies), but Millennials’ potential Tsunami-like disruption is what I think could be most powerful...

In a recent blog, I explained that many companies buy social networking systems like Jive, Yammer, and their built-in talent suite counterparts and expect these systems to enable meaningful social learning. Sadly, they don’t. This led me to share the Spanish saying, “No le pidas peras al olmo,” which means, “Don’t ask an elm tree for pears.” Instead of asking social networking systems (that were built for enterprise communication and coordination) to...

Effectively leading an online social learning group is part art and part science.  There is both a structural component (science) and a feel (art) that contributes to creating the optimal environment for generative learning among group participants.  A balance needs to be struck between these scientific and artistic components to help ensure that there is a learning focus that drives the conversation and engages the participants...

Tuesday, 30 July 2013 00:00


Written by Randy Emelo

I am fascinated by watches and all the bells and whistles—or more accurately “complications”—that they can contain.  Every new action or feature added to a watch beyond the core function of the hour and minute hands is termed a complication.  As a result, adding a second hand, a display of the date, leap years, time zones, moon phases, astrolabe dials, days of the week, times of sunset, times of sunrise, thermometers, altimeters, barometers and so on each constitute an added complication to something that at a basic level was built to help you tell time with an hour and minute hand...

Monday, 22 July 2013 00:00


Written by Kristin Boe

I have been fortunate in my short "Millennial" life to have encountered some truly great mentors, from teachers and bosses to colleagues and friends.  But one particular mentor stands out: my mom. My mom started an aerospace and defense contracting company (mostly providing engineering and IT services) in her basement a few months before 9/11 happened and sent the economy into a downward spiral. Nevertheless, she kept her company (and her dream) alive through the Great Recession...

When your company tagline is “We bring learning to social,” there’s no equivocation on what we value and work toward every day: learning.  As such, we are excited about the latest enhancements to River, which came out on July 10. Our latest update to River includes new features such as: A robust activity feed—similar to those of Facebook and LinkedIn—that displays the latest updates for an employee’s learning engagements on the individual’s home page...

In a new Brandon Hall Group research paper, The Shifting Workforce: Driving Development with Dynamic Learning Networks, author Stacey Harris details how Humana, URS, Monsanto and UnitedHealth Group are expanding their corporate learning environments to encompass structured knowledge sharing, collaboration, peer coaching, and experience-based connections. While business objectives and goals differ, the featured companies all use River. The paper includes examples of how River’s matching algorithms...

Tuesday, 02 July 2013 00:00


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It’s no secret: Business leaders want to be more innovative and they want their employees to be more innovative, too, so that they can reap the benefits that organizational innovation has to offer.  But innovation is difficult to achieve.  It isn’t something that can be learned in a classroom or put in the employee handbook of expected behaviors.  So how do we, as business (and learning) leaders, create a work environment that fosters creativity, out-of-the-box thinking, novel concepts and innovative solutions...

Do you know what the term disintermediation means?  Merriam Dictionary defines it as the elimination of an intermediary in a transaction between parties. In the context of learning and development, disintermediation is the process of changing the role of the “knowledge brokers” that have historically been the facilitators and gatekeepers of the organization’s expertise, and shifting away from “directing” or “brokering” knowledge in an organizational setting to letting it flow unimpeded to relevant people who need it...

Gen Y, that. Millennials, this. Oh, this about Gen Z also. Blah, blah, Boomers retiring, blah. Does this sound familiar? Gen Y, the next mega-generation, Gen Z, the youngest and still mostly unknown generation, and Boomers, the generation that represents today’s leadership and C-Suite occupants, sure are getting a lot of ink these days. But what about Gen X...

Tuesday, 11 June 2013 00:00


Written by Randy Emelo

Just when we all finally think we have a handle on how to talk to, interact with, attract and retain Millennials into our workforce, the inevitable happens: A new generation comes of age. Sorry, Millennials, but it looks like you may have some competition for that bright spotlight soon. While Generation Z (loosely defined as people born between 1995 and today) may still have a few years before they begin to trickle into our corporate halls, they will be the next big generation to enter the workforce after the Millennials...


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