Welcome to the Grist

The Grist is your desk top reference of terminology run through the corporate learning and development mill.

Curriculum – Framework used by a trainer to organise workflow. Think electronic circuit board. A complex maze that defines both the blueprint for a device and the components that make it work. Learning management systems have co-opted the trainers curriculum. The line between education and technologies influence has been removed. Who’s serving who? The confusion is on display in the following job ad. Even HR could not decide if they need a technologist or an educator.

Toolbox – Educational tools a trainer needs to do his/her job including curriculum, instructional methodology and instructional resources. If you’re an operational CEO and want to know the status of a team, consult the trainer. A trainer with a well-defined toolbox will be able to provide you with all the information you need, in real-time. This is a great exercise when you want to compare the performance of your trainer against HR and all the bells and whistles it calls training. In the end what really matters?

Content – An insidious name used by a third-party software company to support the administration of learning management systems and learning content management systems. A trainer thinking like an educator incorporates instructional resources. A system merely deploys content.

Learning Management System aka LMS – Third party software and post-mortem data base. Would have you believe there is no separation between data and training. Value lies in its imitable style. The least educated can copy and paste to great effect. Created for school teachers co-opted by the software industry and sold to corporations. LMS is the answer to a question no one asked. A stone tool HR found as it transitioned from its administrative role to strategic planning. Data sets don’t spark insight about training or trainees. Based on analytics and statistics, not on emotions and relationships that drive training in schools or corporations. The LMS reports outputs and outcomes, not the impacts of learning on the lives and minds of learners.  The idea a date base can be the purveyor of knowledge is beyond archaic. It reeks of a one room school-house where everyone is sitting in rows and doing the exact same thing at the same time using rote learning. More data doesn’t make you more trained anymore than a big wedding makes you more married.

Training Specialist – Can decipher a training system like an archeologist does a dig. Is a student of the education discipline and prefaces work by asking the question, “We are here to do what is best for the trainees”. Once you start from that point, it is now your job to prove why and what you are asking for is in the best interest of trainee. Can see around corners and is capable of proving a point like a lawyer.

SME – Coined by software companies to identify idividuals in the corporate organization chart who will be disintermediated from operational teams for the benefit of ERP tools i.e., the LMS and LCMS. Shifts resources from operational teams to human resources. Works under the mind meld assumptiont that information can be sucked out of persons head like maple sap from a tree.

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