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Bola Owoade

Jewish Care

Senior Learning and Development Advisor

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My First Story

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As I wrote in my description to this blog I love learning through stories. And I still rate the 1-Minute Manager and Our iceberg is Melting as some of the best business books I have ever read. So I would like to try my hand at writing stories about learning and development principles. I also have another reason for wanting to write stories. I honestly do find a lot of learning and development writing dry and very academic (oops hope i don't regret this). These first set of stories are about Larry who has just joined a mid-sized non-profit organisation as the sole learning and development person and wants to create a learning and development strategy for the organisation. Here is the first story.

Larry's new job:
Larry punched Brian's number into his Samsung Galaxy and placed the phone against his right ear. When he heard Brian's voice on the phone saying, hello, he screamed, "Brian, I got the job! I got the job!" Brian laughed on the other end and said, "I thought you would, why do you sound so surprised?" "Well, I haven't worked in the sector before so I didn't expect to get the job", answered Larry. Previously Larry had worked in the Department of Works and Pensions, then moved to the private sector to work with a financial compliance start-up called uCompli. He wanted something a bit different and more value-based and Brian had suggested he try the non-profit sector. Larry hadn't taken Brian seriously until Brian actually found a job for Larry to apply for. It was with a non-profit charity called East Care, that specialized in supporting people with mental health needs. At first it sounded kind of spooky. Larry was wondering what in the world Brian was thinking of getting him to look for a job in a place where they supported people with mental health illness? But Brian took the time to educate Larry on mental health illness, after all Brian had lived experience of  having supported his brother through severe depression.

"So Larry we need to celebrate your new job", said Brian. Larry answered quickly, "how about this Friday?" "No-can't-do", replied Barry. "I'm off to South Africa this Thursday." "South Africa!" said Larry with a raised voice expressing his surprise. "What in the world are you going to do in South Africa?" Brian said, "I am going to see our software developers, they are based there." Brian ran a small business that sold online subscription plans to video based training for rapid elearning development software such as Articulate Storyline, Adobe Captivate, ISpring Presenter, Lectora Publisher and Camtasia. Previously Brian had been a Commercial Projects and Learning Manager at uCompli, he was Larry's former manager.  He had left just before Larry to start the business.

One Response

  1. What’s next?

    Nice open loop and a lovely implicit invitation to keep paying attention.

    Open loops are a great device to use when telling a story. Get the story started, then you can stop the story when there is a sense of anticipation built. You can then talk about other things. people will often pay closer attention to your 'other things' while they wait for the story to be resumed so they can satisfy their curiosity. Think of the way many soap operas and regular TV shows end their episodes. It is usually an open loop loaded with anticpation. Sometimes they even load the loop by doing a few teaser shots from the next episiode.

    Cheers, Paul

     

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Bola Owoade

Senior Learning and Development Advisor

Read more from Bola Owoade
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