Maybe we can call 2012 the Year of Consideration. As Float met with many different companies and organizations, we found that almost everyone was still in that consideration stage, trying to figure out how mobile learning fits into their culture and how it can become an integral part of their learning program. It’s a good starting place; careful and strategic thought is important for any substantive initiative.
So if 2012 was the Year of Consideration, what will 2013 become for you and your organization? Well, you don’t want it to be the Year of Hesitation, Procrastination, Obfuscation, Consternation or Aggravation. It’s time for action, don’t you think? You most likely have seen the great potential and possibilities for mobile and there should be no reservations that you can integrate it into your learning platform.
Since it’s the beginning of the year, let’s take a look at some 2013 resolutions you can adopt so that this year mobile learning becomes more than a wish and turn into a reality.
Try adding these to your resolutions so you can become more of an active mobile learning professional:
- I will read a book specifically about mobile learning. There are many books coming out that have great mLearning information, guidance and strategy. You will see us write about them here on the Float blog, you’ll notice several excerpts in the free Float Mobile Learning Primer for iOS and Android, and you can always start with our own Chad Udell’s book, Learning Everywhere. Or maybe if design is your focus, you can download Tapworthy: Designing Great iPhone Apps by Josh Clark. Yes, the focus is iOS but you will learn a lot about mobile design for all platforms in this book.
- I will download a book about mobile learning. This is not a duplicate of the first resolution. This is more about the action than the deliverable. You need to get active on the mobile platform. You might enjoy reading a physical print version of a book better, but get this book for your Kindle or Galaxy or iPad and read it on a mobile device. It’s something you will expect your learners to do and you should feel comfortable doing it, too.
- I will make a comment on a mobile learning blog. Join the conversation about mLearning. Our friend and colleague Gary Woodill has a great site and also links to many other mLearning blogs: http://www.mobilelearningedge.com/resources/blogs/. The point here is to become active in the discussion about mobile learning in the workplace. Share your opinion. Ask questions. Be a contributor. You’ll be surprised how much you learn.
- I will become active in social media. A major component of mobile learning is social media. Of course, there are the big dogs on the porch like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. These are great spots to engage in mLearning discussions. You can also find many interesting links to articles and blog posts that are shared by your connections. Beyond these well-known social media giants, there are other opportunities to become active in mLearning communities including networks such as Yammer, or perhaps you could try Tappestry, the first social network for learning. The point is there are lots of places you can connect with like-minded learning professionals who are tackling mobile learning just like you are.
- I will attend a conference that has mobile learning information. There are some tremendous conferences and expos put on by great organizations such as the ASTD, the eLearning Guild and Training Magazine to name a few. Each of these groups stage several conferences a year that include mobile learning tracks and content. In fact, mLearnCon, which is staged by the eLearning Guild in the summer, is nothing but mLearning! If your budget can’t handle a national conference, there may be a local ASTD chapter near you. Additionally, you will find these same groups offer many virtual seminars, workshops and presentations. These conferences provide not only valuable information, but the networking is priceless as you have a concentration of other learning professionals going through the same experiences and quandaries that you are.
That’s a good start to your 2013 mobile learning resolutions. If you undertake all of these, you are definitely going to become more “mobile smart.” In other words, you’ll be ready to speak clearly to your colleagues about the great potential of mobile in your organization. You are going to want to get stakeholders on board and so you need to be able to articulate and even demonstrate what mobile can do. These five resolutions will help you do that.
In fact, if you don’t do these first five, the next five resolutions I share in Part Two are going to be rather difficult. Those will be resolutions that point you toward ways you can actually start implementing mobile learning in your enterprise. And that is your ultimate goal, isn’t it?
And when you do that, 2013 becomes the Year of Implementation.
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