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reflections of the team

Our Monthly Reads: October

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Like Socrates said: "The more I learn, the more I realize how little I know", we are constantly motivated to strive for more knowledge in our area of expertise. In our Monthly Reads section, we bundle the best articles, blog posts, infographics and videos we come across every month.

1. Top 200 Tools for Learning 2017 - C4LPT

As a learning aficionado or professional, no doubt you've seen this pass already. However, the list could not have been without the top 200 Learning tools Jane Hart composes every year. Jane has been doing this survey for a while now and it is a great example of how communities use social media to exchange and thus expand knowledge. 

If you ever feel curious for tools your colleagues are trying out, this would be the ideal starting point. Our personal favourite in the top 10 is definitely Twitter. The first tool we encountered on the list that is still unknown territory is Branchtrack. We will be sure to test it out in the near future!

2. What Managers Need to Know about Social Tools - HBR

 Scott Webb - Unsplash

Scott Webb - Unsplash

As you've read on our blog, Karen's last finished book was Social Technology in Business by Isabel De Clercq & friends. It sparked her interest so much, she's still closely following the topic. She enjoyed the chapther in the book discussing "how to convince your management". In this light she found this article by Harvard Business Review very telling. 

This long read discusses the use of tools such as Slack or Yammer and how the use impacted performance. It even discusses frequently heard myths of social technology & how to combat them. A must-read if you're on the brink of a social (r)evolution in your organization!

3. Why You Should Never Underestimate the Fun Part of Innovation - Nexxworks

 Levitating Frog by Andre Geim - Wikipedia

Levitating Frog by Andre Geim - Wikipedia

Peter Hinssen, a digital transformation guru, shares his knowledge, thankfully, across many platforms. Yet this article found a way to surprise us after reading many others of his hand. 

Hinssen shares the story of his favourite (Ig) Nobel prize winner Andre Geim. Geim is a scientist who has the habit of doing experiments on a Friday night, together with some friends or family and perhaps even a wine or too. They get together in an informal way and have fun creating new things. 

Geim won both the Ig Nobel and "regular" Nobel prize with findings after such a Friday night. Showing that the most creativity usually shows it when you least expect or need it. 

4. To Come Up with a Good Idea, Start by Imagining the Worst Idea Possible. - HBR

 Michal Parzuchowski - Unsplash

Michal Parzuchowski - Unsplash

Two years ago, I participated in a creative brainstorm for the national railway organization. The objective of the meeting was to gain input from users in how to ameliorate user experience in ticketing machines.

The day started with a Reverse Thinking afternoon. We were asked what would make our experience even worse.

Responses started off quite nice: “waiting even longer”, “loud processing noises”, … But as the day passed, the participants grew into the exercise. “Swearing and cursing when you walk by!” “Stroboscopic lighting effects!” “For every ticket bought, the machines kills a kitten!”

Yes, it escalated quickly and at first glance, you’d think all of these ideas were irrelevant and unhelpful. But what if we would turn them around?Could we create a better user experience if we would install ticketing machines with natural and nice language? With soothing lights, depending on the weather? With a 10 second clip of a cute kitten while your ticket is in print?

In short: reverse thinking is a great tip for out-of-the-box ideas!

5. Myths & Facts about Flipped Learning - Educase Review

Educause Review was tired of hearing all those myths about Flipped Learning and decided to counter them with sound evidence and cases. Our favourite: how the articles that Flipped Learning optimizes face-to-face learning, not replacing it.

Might come in handy when you need to convince non-believers!

EXTRA: Learning Creative Learning

The extra of this month is a Mooc-like platform of MIT where they get together in a “Kindergarten Community”, as they call it with learning aficionado’s from all over the world. The course kicked off the 18th of October, so you still have time to jump in! See you there?