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Frances Ferguson

Glasstap Ltd

Training Design Manager

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Vision is the art of seeing the invisible….


Ever seen/heard a quote that made you whistle through your teeth as it hit the spot? A saying that made you nod your head franticly and repeatedly? Words that cause a big grin to spread across your face & you to say "Abso-bloomin-lutely"? 

It's a great feeling isn't it :-)

This is how I felt when I read this wonderful quote from Jonathan Swift this evening:

"Vision is the art of seeing the invisible...."

Love it, love it, love it.

It reminds me of the strategy of the late great Steve Jobs - to start creating the products consumers will want before they know that they need them. 

I think even the most begrudging on onlookers could say that Apple are very very good at doing just that.

But why did it have such a resonance with me? Why did I go "Wow"? Why (if I am being completely honest) did your friendly L&D geek feel like running round the room going "WAHEY!!!!!" when I saw that quote?

It is simple. When we hear or see something that makes perfect sense, it is like the feeling of popping in the final piece in the jigsaw. It is the satisfaction of knowing the world in front of us makes more sense; is more complete. It feels good.

For me it encapsulates what brilliant training is all about, when you look round the room and you can see face staring back at you with big grins on their faces and you know they are thinking "Of course. Why didn't I think of that?"

I often tell people that my role as a trainer is to have the knowledge - the theories, the models, the practical experience - and be able to put it across in a way that people 'get'; they know exactly why they need to alter their behaviour. 

Some of our learners will need to know the research, the theories, the names of those clever research peeps who dedicated many years of their lives to creating a simple model for us to follow. But most just want to know "What's in it for me?"

That is what the role of those of us in training is; to make the 'invisible' visible and clear to those around us. So that they have that wonderful moment of 'getting' exactly what they need to do and why.

Yet, too often, we worry; we are afraid. We think no one will be interested in what we are saying. Maybe we think we lack the expertise or the experience; maybe we think our learners feel we are inadequate too? 

Yet we all love that moment when we know that we did good today; that our organisations, our clients or our colleagues are in a better place than they were before we walked into work this morning. Surely it is worth trying to ignore that voice of doubt in order to achieve this?

If you want one last little piece of inspiration that it is possible, one you can share with those who come to you reluctant to change, here is a quote from the one and only Steve Jobs, the interesting thing is it dates back to 1984..... :

"I've always thought that it would be really wonderful to have a little box, a sort of slate that you could carry along with you"

Enjoy your week :-)

Author Profile Picture
Frances Ferguson

Training Design Manager

Read more from Frances Ferguson

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