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LITE 2018 – Visual Storytelling for Training and eLearning Content [Sandy Rushton]

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LITE 2018 – Visual Storytelling for Training and eLearning Content [Sandy Rushton]

  1. 1. www.brightcarbon.com info@brightcarbon.com UK +44 161 883 0225 USA +1 866 789 2482 Visual Storytelling for Training and eLearning Content Sandy Rushton
  2. 2. Start
  3. 3. A B C A B C A
  4. 4. A B C A B C A
  5. 5. Current situation Negative consequence Training solution Learner benefit
  6. 6. Learn to remove 98% of contaminants Access safe drinking water and remain healthy Legislation is slow moving
  7. 7. Audience recall Bransford & Johnson 1972
  8. 8. Let’s meet Clara and see how her business trip is affected by poor data security practices. Along the way, you’ll find out how you can protect your devices and information on business trips.
  9. 9. Ask your subject matter experts What do you want people to do differently? What mistakes do people make? What are the consequences of these mistakes? What is the benefit of doing things differently? Ask your learners What problems do you have? Where do you get stuck? What happens when this goes wrong? Why is it hard to succeed?
  10. 10. • First, build a data governance program to define a policy that specifies who is accountable for various elements of the data. This includes the data’s accuracy, accessibility, consistency and completeness. • Then, align your data definitions. Different stakeholders like IT, Finance and HR are involved in analytics. It’s very important to align with your IT department, because they are tasked with the implementation of these definitions in the HR-systems. • Finally, facilitate your HR-organization by setting goals and KPIs and help them to measure these KPIs. Ensure that three or four key HR-processes (like recruitment, absenteeism and/or turnover) are completely fact-based. Your KPIs should focus on these areas. • Since your data is now much more accurate and complete with uniform data-definitions, you are now ready to serve your business with interesting facts and figures by offering insights through HR- reports and HR-dashboards. • First, build a data governance program to define a policy that specifies who is accountable for various elements of the data. This includes the data’s accuracy, accessibility, consistency and completeness. • Then, align your data definitions. Different stakeholders like IT, Finance and HR are involved in analytics. It’s very important to align with your IT department, because they are tasked with the implementation of these definitions in the HR-systems. • Finally, facilitate your HR-organization by setting goals and KPIs and help them to measure these KPIs. Ensure that three or four key HR-processes (like recruitment, absenteeism and/or turnover) are completely fact-based. Your KPIs should focus on these areas. • Since your data is now much more accurate and complete with uniform data-definitions, you are now ready to serve your business with interesting facts and figures by offering insights through HR- reports and HR-dashboards. • First, build a data governance program to define a policy that specifies who is accountable for various elements of the data. This includes the data’s accuracy, accessibility, consistency and completeness. • Then, align your data definitions. Different stakeholders like IT, Finance and HR are involved in analytics. It’s very important to align with your IT department, because they are tasked with the implementation of these definitions in the HR-systems. • Finally, facilitate your HR-organization by setting goals and KPIs and help them to measure these KPIs. Ensure that three or four key HR-processes (like recruitment, absenteeism and/or turnover) are completely fact-based. Your KPIs should focus on these areas. • Since your data is now much more accurate and complete with uniform data-definitions, you are now ready to serve your business with interesting facts and figures by offering insights through HR- reports and HR-dashboards. Basics of Data Management for HR Analytics Source: AnalyticsinHR.com
  11. 11. Basics of Data Management for HR Analytics Source: AnalyticsinHR.com Build data governance program Align data definitions Set goals and KPIs Offer insight through reports and dashboards
  12. 12. Creating Change in Your Organisation: Using the People Analytics Cycle Source: AnalyticsinHR.com People Analytics Process Cycle Ask the right questions Interpret and execute Analyse the data Clean the data Select the data
  13. 13. Decision Makers, Admins & Power Users POWER USERS Main point of contact Ambassador to help educate other platform users Relays communications and information to platform users Integral part of onboarding program ADMINS Assigned in the tool at account set- up Create users and grant permissions Track usage View teams and permissions Access to chat support Platform Users Customer Success Manager Power Users Decision Maker Admin
  14. 14. Decision Makers, Admins & Power Users POWER USERS Main point of contact Ambassador to help educate other platform users Relays communications and information to platform users Integral part of onboarding program ADMINS Assigned in the tool at account set- up Create users and grant permissions Track usage View teams and permissions Access to chat support Platform Users Customer Success Manager Power Users Decision Maker Admin
  15. 15. Decision Makers, Admins & Power Users Admin Decision Maker Power Users Platform Users Customer Success Manager Assigned in software Track usage Relay information Help educate & onboard
  16. 16. Presentations Interactive Decks eLearning Explainer Videos Dynamic Animations PDFs Infographics
  17. 17. brightcbrightcarbon.com/events Free 30 minute online master classes every week
  18. 18. brightcarbon.com/resources/slide-visualisation Free resources to take your slides to the next level Visualisation tips Advanced visualisation
  19. 19. Phone UK +44 161 883 0225 USA +1 866 789 2482 Email info@brightcarbon.com Web www.brightcarbon.com @BrightCarbon

Editor's Notes

  • 0 - Hello everyone! I’m Sandy, I’m work for a company called BrightCarbon. Thanks to LITE for having me, and to all of you for coming to this session on visual storytelling. I want to start by outlining some common themes that we see in a lot of training and eLearning content.
  • 0 – Let’s think about eLearning.

    1 – At your fingertips is a powerful tool to upskill your staff on-demand, no matter where they are in the world.

    2 – But so often eLearning content is reduced to a text-heavy manual, where learners are faced with pages of dense, wordy content. The only respite is the Next button…
  • 0 – …which leads learners to a multiple-choice test that they will likely just guess their way through.
  • 0 – And we see similar problems in face-to-face training content. Text-heavy slides, endless bullet-point lists and a trainer struggling to keep learners awake against the odds.
  • 0 – But it doesn’t have to be that way, and you’ve probably come to this session to find out how to avoid these common mistakes. So when you’re sat at your desk creating some training content, what can you do to make it take off?

    1 – Well, at BrightCarbon, we think that one of the keys to creating successful training is storytelling.
  • 0 – And today I’m going to share some insights into how 1 - stories, told through 2- visualization and 3- made clearer through animation, can make training and eLearning content more effective.

    4 - First, let’s start off with storytelling…
  • 0 – Stories are a brilliant, brilliant tool.
    1 - They help to engage and motivate learners to pay attention,
    2 – They make content more memorable,
    3 – And they give us a opportunity to create more dynamic, active learning.

  • 0 – So let’s start with engaging and motivating your learners. It’s quite rare for anyone to attend training of their own accord.

    1 – Often we get told we have to attend training, because our regulator demands that we attend a day of fire safety training or our head of department has told us we need to complete an eLearning module about a new range of products.

    2 - These can feel like box-ticking exercises, usually because they are. And no-one is overly excited to be taking part in box-ticking. So, before you can start to tackle the problem that the training is trying to solve, you need to get the learners to understand why this training is actually important and relevant for them. Without this, you’re facing a lot more work: it’s a lot harder to teach when people don’t know why they should listen.
  • 0 - So, before telling your learners everything they need to know, you need to give them an impetus to learn. It’s the old carrot vs. stick analogy.

    1 - The typical ‘you need to pass or you’ll get in trouble’ approach isn’t the right kind of motivation. The ‘stick’ approach will encourage people to pay just enough attention to get through the training day or eLearning module and avoid an awkward meeting with their line manager, but it won’t set up a situation where you’ll see changes in behaviour – which is the whole point of the training anyway.

    2 – Instead, you need the carrot. You need to show an immediate, tangible and beneficial impact to their role. Demonstrating how knowing the following information, understanding it, and being able to apply it will help them do better, achieve more, stay safe, or develop in some other way is a crucial first step. Without it, they have no reason to listen or engage, and so won’t.
  • 0 – And there’s a four-part narrative that you can use to tell a story that motivates your learners at the beginning of any training presentation or eLearning module.

    1 - Begin by talking about the current situation – some change, development or event that is the context for why they have to do this training.

    2 - Explain what the negative impacts are of not learning this. It’s important that these have some bearing on the learner, and they aren’t just ‘you’ll get in trouble’ or ‘the wider company will be affected negatively’. It should be something specific and tangible that will impact them, as an individual, in an immediate and obvious way.

    3 - Follow this with a solution: what knowledge will the learner need to avoid this negative outcome. You can draw on your learning objectives to come up with your solution, or even quote them directly.

    4 - And finally, you need to explain the ‘so what?’ So, tell the learners how the things they’ll learn in this training will benefit them. Again, this should be about the learner, not how the company or industry will benefit. Directly impacting them is the key.
  • 0 - So let’s look at an example. This is some training about water safety.

    1 – The situation is We have contaminated water in our village and government intervention has been slow. Current proposed legislation is complicated, expensive, and will take a long time to implement even once it’s decided.

    2 - The problem is you can’t wait for all that to happen, because your current drinking water isn’t potable.

    3 – And the negative impact is that if you don’t self-filter this water the you put yourself at risk for illness form the contaminated water.

    4 – But the solution is following the simple steps in this training you will learn how to filter out 98% of harmful contaminants by using a simple t-shirt, scarf, or bed sheet. And the benefit is that this will give you safe drinking water immediately so you can remain healthy while we await government intervention.
  • 0 – By taking the learner along this story, you’re providing context and making it clear why the learning is relevant to them.

    1 - And relevance is so important because learners are twice as likely to remember information they perceive to be relevant to them (as opposed to non-relevant information). And that word ‘perceive’ is also really important, because stories are a way of connecting the dots between your learners and the content. You could build the most relevant content in the world, but if your learner isn’t aware that it is relevant, they aren’t perceiving it as relevant, they’re still not going to remember it as well. So this is one of the reasons stories make learning more memorable: they make it very clear how the learning content is relevant to the learner’s world.
  • 0 – So, stories are great for engaging and motivating learners, and make content more memorable. And, they enable us to use an active mode of teaching. A lot of educators believe that practice is the best way of learning:

    1 - actually getting your hands dirty, getting stuck in and just doing the thing. A practice makes perfect kinda thing.

    2 - But sometimes it might not be possible for learners to get real practice because of lack of time, or lack of access to equipment, safety regulations, or the restrictions of the training mode.

    3 – So if practice is like a main-stage performance, a story is like a rehearsal. It’s not quite as valuable to the learner as actual practice, but it puts them in a better position to go through the real life experience.
  • 0 – You can immerse learners in stories by building scenarios that put the learner in a leading role, and enable them make decisions in order to discover and demonstrate key knowledge. Having them move through this journey from the driver’s seat is a much more engaging, memorable, and active way of learning.
  • 0 – This kind of scenario enables learners to make decisions in order to discover and demonstrate key knowledge. In this example, they’re choosing their own adventure in a way: every response they give leads them down a different conversation path.
  • 0 –And, giving direct, specific feedback on their choices is a great way of affirming when a learner gets something right and teaching them why they got something wrong.
  • 0 – Another option is guided stories. These are less immersive, but still effective: instead of putting your learner in the leading role, have them follow the lead character through their journey.

    For example, in this training learners follow a character called Clara as she experiences a number of mishaps that compromise her data security. Through following Clara’s story, the learners realise what not to do, see the possible negative consequences of their potential actions, and learn about what they should be doing instead.
  • 0 - So, when you’re sitting down to create your content, you need stories in your toolbox. And the best stories come from the source:

    1 – Your subject matter experts

    2 – And your learners
  • You can take a snap of these questions, but I’ll tweet it out from the BrightCarbon twitter later too.

    Ask your SMES and stakeholders:
    1 - What do you want people to do differently?
    2 - What mistakes do people make?
    3- What are the consequences of these mistakes?
    4 - What is the benefit of doing things differently?

    5 - Ask your learners:
    What problems do you have?
    6 - Where do you get stuck?
    7 - What happens when this goes wrong?
    8 - Why is it hard to succeed?

    Ask these questions and listen when people give you a for instance or real life example. This content is gold.
  • 0 - Now that we’ve talked a little bit about the power of stories, let’s look at visualisation.
  • 0 – So, stories are great! Hurray! But how you tell the story is just as important and this is where we get into visuals. When you look at typical training or eLearning content, you’re faced with slides that are full of words. The problem is that words you see

    1 - and words you hear

    2 - are all processed in a single part of the brain,

    3 - meaning that humans just can’t read and listen at the same time.

    4 - Which leaves your learners confused.
  • 0 – BUT if you are looking at visual content instead of text,

    1 – then the words you hear aren’t competing for attention with words you’re trying to read,

    2 – and the two streams of information – visual and linguistic – can coexist in your mind.

    3 – AND it’s actually easier for them to process the information because they’re able to take both visual information and the linguistic information in a process called dual coding, which enables them to more easily understand and retain more of what’s being taught.

    4 - Which leaves your learners feeling great and learning more!

    So, we need visual information as well as text. But how do you figure out what visuals to use?
  • 0 – Well, you could get yourself a state of the art visualisation machine that chews up your text and spits out beautiful, designed, visual content.

    But if you don’t have one of those, you can take basic concepts of visual communication to create training content using just simple shapes in PowerPoint or whatever authoring tool you’re using.

    Let’s work through an example together.
  • 0 - AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION Take a look at these five circles. These might be five bits of important information, represented as five icons or illustrations. One obvious way to arrange these, would be to line them up horizontally, like so. This might seem to be the natural or obvious choice. But, what is that decision actually saying about the information?

    They’re all discrete, not intersecting or joined up together. All individual elements.

    They’re all the same size, shape and colour. Nothing’s standing out. They’re all equal.

    In western cultures we tend to read left to right, so there’s a chronology suggested here. Starting on the left and ending on the right.

    So there’s a lot going on here – even if you didn’t intend or even realise it. So, let’s play around with this a bit.
  • 0 - AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION If I arrange the points in a circle, I can give the impression that this is a finite group – there’s no more room for another point, so the learner assumes that what you’re showing is complete.
  • 0 - AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION If I link these together through the centre, it suggests that each is related to a single, unifying concept or category.
  • 0 - AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION But, if the link changes to a ring, this connection means something different – they’re related to each other, but not necessarily a central idea. Again, a logical flow is suggested here too.
  • 0 - I can suggest a close relationship between points by having the circles expand and come into contact with one another.
  • 0 - Or take this even further, and have them intersect. If you choose to do this, do so for a reason. The interconnected areas need to mean something – a specific piece of information that means something exclusively to the two adjacent points.
  • 0 - AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION Let’s put these back into a line. From here I can indicate significance in a number of ways. Moving one out of line shows draws attention to it, above the others.
  • 0 - Similarly, making it bigger indicates it is more important.
  • 0 - I can extend this out and suggest an entire hierarchy through the relative size of each circle. The biggest takes up most space, and therefore more significance.

    1 -At this stage, the order is less important, so spreading them out makes more sense.
  • 0 - Finally, we don’t need to limit ourselves to a single 2D plane. One very powerful way to suggest significance or emphasis is to use focus.

    1 - So if you make some of the circles look blurry, our eye is drawn immediately to the sharp elements on the slide – and less so to those that was obscured. This gives the effect that they are receding into the background, further away from us, and therefore less important.
  • 0 - Ok, so what I want to do now is take these basic principles and apply them to some actual training content. I’m going to show a typical starting point for some training content: a dreaded, bullet-point filled, text-heavy slide! I’ll give you a minute to read it and I want you to think about what we just looked at and consider what layout and visuals we could use to tell this story.
  • 0 – So, here we go. LET AUDIENCE READ SLIDE.

    Any ideas?


    1 – It’s quite hard to figure out with all of this text, so let’s focus in on some key areas. We need to get to the core information in each bullet point. What are we asking or telling the learners to DO at each point? Look for active verbs like ‘build’, ‘align’, ‘set’, ‘measure’. These highlighted phrases show the core action that is described at each bullet point.

    2 – Then, we need to understand the relationship between the pieces of information, in order to figure out how to represent them visually. These conjunctions ‘first’, ‘then’, ‘finally’ give us a big hint that it’s steps of a process, and they tell us the order. The final point is kind of a summary of the information above, and tells the learner what the result of the process is. By doing steps 1-3 they can now offer insights etc.

    So, now that we know it’s a process, and a result, what could we use to show this? Let’s see!
  • 0 - First, build a data governance program to define a policy that specifies who is accountable for various elements of the data. This includes the data’s accuracy, accessibility, consistency and completeness.

    1 - Then, align your data definitions. Different stakeholders like IT, Finance and HR are involved in analytics. It’s very important to align with your IT department, because they are tasked with the implementation of these definitions in the HR-systems.

    2 - Finally, facilitate your HR-organization by setting goals and KPIs and help them to measure these KPIs. Ensure that three or four key HR-processes (like recruitment, absenteeism and/or turnover) are completely fact-based. Your KPIs should focus on these areas.

    3 - Since your data is now much more accurate and complete with uniform data-definitions, you are now ready to serve your business with interesting fact and figures by offering insights through HR-reports and HR-dashboards.
  • 0 - So, I hope you can see from those examples that it’s really not that huge a leap to create visual sequences in your training content. And now, onto the final part of the puzzle which is animation.
  • 0 – Often slide content appears simultaneously, all the information up there, all at once.

    1- This means learners have no clear guidance on where they should be focusing their attention.
  • 0 – If there is too much information on the screen there might simply be too much for them to take in,

    1- and they will switch off rather than trying to understand it, and maybe just start scrolling through their phone. Or clicking that next button on the eLearning because they’re overwhelmed by the wall of content in front of them.
  • 0 – Even if your learners do try to understand it, the content they are focusing on will not necessarily match the teaching point you’re trying to make,

    1- creating a barrier to successful communication.


  • 0 – I mean… Eesh, where do you start with something like this? It’s got a nice visual, and some supporting statistics and equations, but you don’t know where to start.

    1 – So, let’s get rid of that.

    2 – To keep control of the flow and pace of information we need to build in animations so that you can decide when to show the key points;

  • 0 – this ensures that information appears in manageable chunks, and keeps the learner focused on the point you’re currently making.
  • 0 – So thinking about the visual language we’ve discussed, let’s take a look at this slide. What do you think? Is it a good slide?

    Initial thoughts… well, yes, probably. It looks good, not too much text, just little captions, nice visual style, we’re using the visual to show a cyclical process simply.

    The problem is, even though this is quite a simple diagram, it still takes quite a bit of your mental energy to interpret it as a whole. And I bet everyone looks at a different part of it to start: title, or the middle caption, or different points in the process. So as much as we can use layout to say a lot about the content, if it’s all building in at once, there’s nothing guiding the learner through it in an easy way.

    1 - Instead, let’s the same exact cyclical process, but start with just one element on the screen. Now, everyone’s focused on this first point. So, first, you need to ask the right questions. Then I’ll click…

    2 - And bring in the second part of the process: now you need to select the right data from what you’ve gathered based on the questions. All your attention has now shifted to that point and my explanation accompanies it.

    3 - Click. After you have your data, you need to clean it up to make sure it’s fit for purpose.

    4 – Click. And then you can begin your analysis, looking for trends and patterns.

    5 – Click. And finally, interpret that data and execute your actions, before coming back and starting it all again after the actions have been put into place.

    A simple technique, but very effective. And it works for more complex slides, too.
  • 0 – So thinking about the visual language we’ve discussed, let’s take a look at a cyclical diagram. What do you think? Is it a good slide?
    Initial thoughts… well, yes, probably. It looks good, not too much text, just little captions, nice visual style, we’re using the visual to show a cyclical process simply. The problem is, even though this is quite a simple diagram, it still takes quite a bit of your cognitive load to interpret it as a whole. And I bet everyone looks at a different part of it to start. So there’s no control for the presenter, and no coordination for the learner.

    1 - Instead, let’s the same exact cyclical process, but start with just one element on the screen. Now, everyone’s focused on this first point. So, first, you need to ask the right questions. Then I’ll click…
    2 - And bring in the second part of the process: now you need to select the right data from what you’ve gathered based on the questions. All your attention has now shifted to that point and my explanation accompanies it.
    3 - Click. After you have your data, you need to clean it up to make sure it’s fit for purpose.
    4 – Click. And then you can begin your analysis, looking for trends and patterns.
    5 – Click. And finally, interpret that data and execute your actions, before coming back and starting it all again after the actions have been put into place. This is a great and simple way to control the entire presentation, and ensure that everyone follows along. A simple technique, but very effective. And it works for more complex slides, too.
  • 0 – Right, one last example now. Let’s have a look at a final slide.
  • 0 - So what do you think of this slide?
  • 0 - Everything all at once is just too much isn’t it!
  • 0 - But now, coming back to it, what do you think here? It’s exactly the same slide, but now just the diagram is there.

    1 - Then click, and the first wall of text for the admins comes up.

    2 - And click for the second lot for power users.

    Just the simple entrance animations, which literally take a few seconds to add, make a huge difference, as you can control the pacing and focus attention. So even terrible slides can be made better quickly, by building them up in stages.

    But how would you improve it further? Well, the diagram in the centre is actually a good one. What if you expanded on it, and added the bullet points into the diagram to build the whole story of this slide in a visual way.
  • 0 - This is exactly the same slide, but we’ve added clicks to build the content up in a more granular way. First showing the customer success manager and the platform users.

    1 - Then each of the roles, with the decision maker coming out,

    2 - Followed by the admin. Here we’re going to detail what the admin does – which is what those bullet points were about – showing that they are assigned in the software tool,

    3 - That they create user groups,

    4 - Track usage of the tool,

    5 - And use chat support if they need anything.

    6 - Then we move to the power users,

    7 - Who are the main points of contact,

    8 - And relay information about the tool to all users,

    9 - Helping to educate and onboard them.

    What do you think? Same basic principle, but building everything around a single diagram, and using simple animations to build it all up in an easily digestible chunks that everyone can follow
  • 0 - And with that, we’ve come full circle. We’ve shown how visual stories, brought to life with select animation, can really make a difference to your training content. And hopefully you’ve got some ideas about how you can use this in your next training session or eLearning module.
  • 0 – And if you’re feeling inspired but you need a bit of help, BrightCarbon are here for that. You might just want help with making your slides or eLearning content snazzier, or you might want help telling your stories better too. We can help with both.

    And then, we can help you to make the most of the stories and visuals we create – using them in presentations, but also in eLearning, animations and explainer videos, infographics, and interactive decks and PDFs.

    And then finally, to really help, we can teach you how to do some of the things we’re really good at – with Advanced PowerPoint training, presentation skills training, and even sales messaging training.
  • 0 – Also, our website is full of incredibly useful content – all of it free. Visit BrightCarbon.com and sign up weekly online master classes. We also have some face to face training in Manchester and London coming up in the next few weeks.
  • 0 – And access our visualisation resources. I’ll tweet this out from our twitter later too, so you can find the link directly. Or come chat to me at the end, I have some pamphlets with more information.
  • 0 - And that’s it from me! Thank you so much for your time: any questions?
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