A Modern Learning Professional

At this year’s CIPD Learning and Development Show, Gary Cookson did a presentation on the Modern Learning Professional. Using a cleverly written poem, Gary reflected on his initial experience of learning as a secondary school teacher, the early years of his corporate training career and how the role of training has changed over the years.

It was a pleasure to be invited to create a replay of this content using a video Gary sent me, his notes and a copy of his Powerpoint Presentation.

#IronTweeps The Movie

On Sunday 18th March 2018, a team of swimmers, cyclists and runners from around the UK, Europe and beyond, joined together to complete a relay Iron Man in aid of Sport Relief 2018 and you can still donate here.

Braving bitterly cold wind, snow and ice, making last minute adjustments to arrangements and routes on the day, the team completed an incredible 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile cycle and a 26.2 mile run, each taking their turn before handing on to the next one using social media.

The donations go directly to Sport Relief who do some incredible work around the world and here in the UK helping people to lead better lives. I’ve personally been touched by their work in the UK funding projects to change the stigma associated with mental health issues.

Watch the video below and please donate to the great cause of Sport Relief by visiting the team page and choosing any of the team to donate to. Your support is massively appreciated.

DPG Community Merry Christmas

Christmas wouldn’t be christmas if I didn’t put my hands to some form of Christmas digital goodness and this year it’s been a pleasure to work on this one for DPG. This year, we’ve opted for a nice, simply worded Christmas greeting to the friends and family of the DPG Community. You can see it below.

In the thriving community of practice of the DPG Community, thousands of HR and L&D professionals network, share, learn and grow. That includes those developing their HR and L&D expertise through CIPD qualifications with DPG to those that are just making the most of all the community has to offer.

So what about you and your development for 2018? If you are a professional looking to be part of a vibrant community dedicated to continually developing and being the best at what they do, just head along here and sign up.

We’ll look forward to having you with us in 2018.

Here’s the video. Merry Christmas.


Good quality voice recordings – What microphones and software without breaking the bank?

I was a fond fan of this question as soon as I saw it.

The fact that the question was around creating ‘good’ quality voice recordings appealed to me. If there’s one thing I’ve discovered along the way, a ‘bad’ quality voice recording is a sure-fire way to tune out your listener (and/or viewer). The fact is ‘good’ quality audio is necessary, especially when it comes to voice.

That is unless you’re trying to create a deliberately poor-quality recording (more on that later).

So what sort of microphones and software do you need that won’t break the bank? What do you need to get that good quality recording from a home or office?

#IDrewAPigeon: Want to Learn How To Use Twitter?

Twitter is a powerful tool and nowadays, I couldn’t be without it. It’s firmly in my toolkit of digital platforms that I find incredibly useful. But it hasn’t always been that way.

Like many, when I first heard about Twitter years ago, I just didn’t get it. Why would you want a platform that essentially just allows you to broadcast a ‘status’ update? And why, should we be limited to the number or characters we should use?

So why did I join? The honest reason for this is I felt obliged to do so as a particular DJ I was listening to much on the radio at the time (and still do). He was always banging on about Tweeting the show, more so than sending in texts. Over the months that I listened to him, I became fascinated with how the guy built collections of interactions on certain parts of his show and music he was playing under the banner of something I’d never heard of; hashtags.

I took the plunge, signed up for an account, sent a few tweets, followed a few TV programmes other high profile accounts, to get very quickly very bored and put it to one side for a couple of years.


cipd L&D show

CIPD L&D Show An Artistic View

CIPD L&D Show was this week. I had planned to make it down for at least one day. A change in plans meant that I didn’t in the end.

No worries. The flurry of activity that comes from events like this mean I would at least be able to keep up with the threads from afar using the usual channels.

Life was made so much easier with the brilliant work from consulting artist Simon Heath. He not only continually demonstrates his ability to bring stuff to life through his doodling excellence but this guy really has some serious talent and finely honed skills in pulling out the most important, thought-provoking and relevant points.

I’ve shared these masterpieces in a video curation of his work. Check it out by clicking this link to > DPG Community Update

Learning at Work Week


Learning at Work week is next week from 15th – 19th May and it was a pleasure earlier on this week to have a chat with Julia Wright, the National Director at Campaign for Learning. I’m a fan of the work they do and whilst Learning at Work Week is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of the great things they work on, it’s a useful reminder to us all about the role we all play in life long learning.

Listen in to the interview and find out more on the DPG Community: Learning at Work Week.

Experiment, tactics and learnings from Twitter


Is the experiment over? Have you changed tactics? What have you learned? They’re great questions and much appreciated. Thank you. Seeing as they’ve been asked, they deserve an answer. I’ve been thinking about these over the past few weeks before starting to re-follow on Twitter.

Is the experiment over?

The thing is unfollowing everyone on Twitter was never an experiment. It was a new and much needed way of working, one that’s worked out really well. I’ve pondered for a few weeks about changing it and it’s a change I’m already finding challenging. But there’s a reason for me doing so though so I’ll persevere. If it doesn’t work out I can always revert back. I’ll come on to why the re-following in a while, but me doing so is an experiment.

How are you developing your digital skills?

More than 12 million adults in the UK lack basic digital skills. That’s according to the work of Go ON UK and later Doteveryone  over several years. They’ve been working hard to highlight this problem and how it affects both individuals and our workforce as a whole. The need for basic digital skills is now widely recognised. There’s been a recent announcement that this work has been handed over to the Tech Partnership, an organisation that has a track record of bringing people together to address critical digital issues. They will lead the next phase of working to create skills for the UK’s digital economy .

As L&D and HR professionals, it’s important we consider our own digital skills. Our people are already using technology in every area of their lives outside the organisation. We must take advantage of the ever growing technology that is available to help our organisations thrive.

Creating a personal knowledge store using Slack

In my role as a Digital Learning Specialist, one of the challenges I find is keeping up with all the knowledge needed to do my job. Digital is massive. There’s so much to learn with the software I use. Videos, animations, audio, instructional design, virtual classrooms, social platforms, collaboration tools the list goes on and on. It seems like every day there’s something new to get my head around. Because there is so much to learn, there is also a lot to remember. It’s just not possible to keep all this in my head.

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