Audiences are never everyone… oh, and who walked into the fridge?

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Love this quick snap. I imagine the instruction was created as a result of one person walking into a fridge full of milk. If there was more than one, I’d be surprised – maybe they were a Milo consultant?

The funny thing is the instruction is put up for everyone – do we need it?

When designing any user or learning experience, understanding what our users/learners already know, what they could easily work out, what will stretch them and what would be condescending (more crudely expressed, “how to suck eggs”) – is hugely important.


A tip.

When training adults in more senior or high profile roles, ALWAYS talk to their ego, and do it first and foremost (in a good way):

NEVER: “Welcome to this training on “how to suck eggs”. We’ll be covering our best practice three step process. By the end of the training you will be able to…”

MORE OF: “As a decision maker within our company, you know how important it is to “[do whatever the training is about]”. This training aims to extend your professional practice in this area, looking to build on your rich experience. Throughout the training, please also consider any feedback you would like to share with us at the end. Your experience and what you think of this training will lead to better outcomes for others…”

The first ‘NEVER’ approach is a generic standard for the ‘everyone’ approach. The trouble is though, our audience is never ‘just everyone’. It’s a very direct approach of course, but doesn’t take the opportunity to talk with the audience. This is incredibly important in an online environment. We can’t tailor a lesson on the fly in most digital learning assets, so understanding our audience is big, and needs to influence our language and choice of communication.

The second approach might be a little over the top, but speaks much more to our example audiences’ experience, self belief, experience and asks them to look at the training at a number of levels, which we can expect they’re capable of doing.

This is a very simple example, with A LOT of focus on getting our training off on the right foot: “We don’t get a second chance at our first impression” (Shrek). Hope the read was of interest.

Brenden – Creative Director at The Learning Hook –

Custom Learning Solution Specialists. eLearning Courses. Programs. Learning Portals. Multimedia production to amplify learning.

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