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In previous weeks, my focus was to introduce the idea of a blended learning system. Now my focus has shifted toward getting into the details of describing how the blended learning system will work. 
This week I had a meeting with the Training Manager to review progress in documenting the blended training process and to elicit feedback for improvement. 
I did receive feedback that I classify as concerns. Although the feedback was not negative, the issues raised would have to be addressed to the satisfaction of the Manager.
The Manager’s three concerns were: “We just have to make sure that the students have good instructions on how navigate back to the e-learning;” ”We need to have a trigger point where the students get scheduled for instructor lead training if they fail to complete the e-learning after a certain amount of time;” and, “We need to give the students instructions on how to get help if they are having problems.”

Her feedback was based upon our discussion regarding the following flowchart (click image to enlarge):

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Reflection
How do I feel about the approach that I am using?  I feel that I am using the correct approach. Consulting with the manager allows me to get feedback on what she thinks will improve the blended learning process. Incorporating her lessons, I feel, will give her a sense of ownership into the process. In my past experience, I have seen hat most people who are given an opportunity to contribute to a new process will, at the very least, not seek to work against the implementation of the process. I can recall, early in my career, an incident where I had a number of employees who were actively hostile to a new and different process. They were actively encouraging other employees to not follow the process as designed. When I enlisted these nay-Sayers into helping me improve upon the processes, I was able to accommodate many of their suggestions. I quickly learned that some steps in a process are critical to success while others could be modified without losing the intent of the process. Since then, I strive to include stakeholders into the creation of a new process. If the process structure has critical evidence-based elements that can't be changed, I communicate to stakeholders that those particular elements cannot be deleted. I did this with the Manager and was able to avoid conflict with her regarding critical to success elements in the process. At the same time, I was able to get from her useful feedback that will improve the process while encouraging her ownership as a co-author of the process.

 
 
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This week I had a meeting with the Training Manager. She manages trainers and training coordinators. Her recommendation to proceed with a Blended Learning test is critical. It is natural for her to be involved in the processes and guides to be used by trainers and training coordinators.

I presented to her the same outline that I presented to the Director.
Her response was overwhelmingly positive, “This could really free up the Trainers to target specific provider issues by getting the basics out of the way before the Trainer’s class.”

Reflection
Having such a positive reaction has me very enthusiastic  Why am I enthusiastic? In previous jobs, pitching a new idea has had negative consequences. In a similar situation  I would receive a flurry of negative comments and reasons why such an idea would never work. 

Why is the reaction different now? I think that two elements make this different. First, the culture of this company (and of my department in particular) is one of continuous quality improvement. The company encourages an iterative process similar to action research and this allows the introduction of new ideas and testing. Other companies that I have worked for lacked continuous improvement in their make up. Simply put, the company that I work for is more developmentally advanced than others. Secondly, in the past, I would not couple a concept with the idea of small scale feasibility testing. When pitching a new idea or concept within the context of testing it for efficacy seems to make the concept less threatening. I have yet to have management in any company say no to testing a new way of doing things with a potential toward providing benefits.