Nash-Boyd Learning Solution

Learning Specialists providing support to Corporate America

Multi-Tasking

What we call multitasking is really task-switching

When you’re trying to juggle what seems like a million responsibilities, multitasking might seem like a necessary evil. But research shows that multi-tasking or switching tasks, can actual cause more harm than good. 

Each time we try and batch unrelated tasks together, we tax our brain and use up energy in the transition. The more complex the tasks we are switching between, the higher the cognitive cost.  Yes…our brains suffer.  

In today’s society, doing just one thing at a time seems downright luxurious – bordering on lazy or wasteful.  But chances are, you’re not doing yourself (or your boss, or your friends and family) any favors by multitasking your way through the day.

Research shows that it’s not nearly as efficient as we like to believe and can even be harmful to our health. Research conducted at Stanford University found that multitasking is less productive than performing a single task – one at a time. 

During a 2014 study, brain scans of the participants indicate that the prefrontal cortex quickened its ability to process the information, enabling the individuals to perform tasks (related to the same goal) more efficiently.  

Multitasking (unrelated tasking) reduces your efficiency and performance because your brain can only focus on one thing at a time. When you try to do two different things at once, your brain lacks the capacity to perform both tasks successfully. Research also shows that, in addition to slowing you down, multitasking lowers your IQ.  Ouch!

Productivity?

Moving back and forth between several tasks actually wastes productivity, because your attention is expended on the act of switching gears—plus, you never get fully “in the zone” for either activity.

Save time?

Contrary to popular belief, multitasking doesn’t save time. In fact, it will probably takes longer to finish two projects when you’re jumping back and forth than it would to finish each one separately.

“What tends to save the most time is to do things in batches,” says a researcher on multitasking. “Pay your bills all at once, then send your emails all at once.  Each task requires a specific mindset, and once you get in a groove you should stay there and finish.”  People who switch between tasks tend to lose time and have problems staying on task, which has a negative impact on both productivity and performance

 “When it comes to attention and productivity, our brains have a finite amount,” he says.
“It’s like a pie chart, and whatever we’re working on is going to take up the majority of that pie. There’s not a lot left over for other things, with the exception of automatic behaviors like walking or chewing gum.”

Mistakes?

Experts estimate that switching between tasks can cause a 40% loss in productivity. It can also cause you to introduce errors into whatever you’re working on, especially if one or more of your activities involves a lot of critical thinking.



Stress?

When University of California Irvine researchers measured the heart rates of employees with and without constant access to office email, they found that those who received a steady stream of messages stayed in a perpetual “high alert” mode with higher heart rates. Those without constant email access did less multitasking and were less stressed because of it.  And it’s not only the physical act of multitasking that causes stress; it’s the consequences.  The mistakes you make and the extended time it takes to complete the task. 

Details?

Most will agree that if you try to do two things at once—read a book and watch television, for example—that you’re going to miss important details of one or both. But even interrupting one task to suddenly focus on another can be enough to disrupt short term memory, according to a 2011 study.

Creativity?

Multitasking requires a lot of what’s known as “working memory,” or temporary brain storage, in layman’s terms. And when working memory is all used up, it can take away from our ability to think creatively, according to research from the University of Illinois at Chicago.  With so much already going on in their heads, researchers suggest, multitaskers often find it harder to daydream and generate the spontaneous “a ha moment.”

Missing out on life?

Forget seeing the forest for the trees or the glass half full—people who are busy doing two unrelated things at once don’t even see obvious things right in front of them, according to a 2009 study from Western Washington University.

Specifically, 75% of college students who walked across a campus square while talking on their cell phones did not notice a clown riding a unicycle nearby. The researchers call this “inattentional blindness,” saying that even though the cell-phone talkers were technically looking at their surroundings, none of it was registering in their brains.

Learning?

For many years, it was thought that people who multitask, or perform more than one activity at once, had an edge over those who did not. However, research now suggests that multitasking can actually make learning less effective.

Solution

On their own, these multi-tasking habits might seem harmless. But if you do them repeatedly, they can ruin your cognitive function in ways you don’t realize.

To save your brain, develop new habits to replace the multitasking habit.

Start by focusing your attention on the task at hand and continue working for a predetermined amount of time.

Pay attention next time you find yourself performing many tasks at one time.  Ask yourself if there’s a better habit that can go in its place.

Your brain will be happy and thank you.

Corrective Feedback

As an instructional designer, I know that Level 2 evaluation plays a significant role in ensuring that learners truly understand the presented material. While most e-Learning courses contain some type of test or quiz, many do not bother to provide adequate feedback.

In fact, feedback, plays a crucial role in helping learners progress towards their goals and understand whether they have mastered the content from the course.

The main goal of corrective feedback is to provide remediation and promote learning.

The feedback that learners receive can be either intrinsic or indirect or extrinsic or direct.

The type of course, presentation methods, and assessment instruments chosen determine the type of feedback you provide. For example, while extrinsic feedback may be a good choice for multiple-choice questions, it may not work well for a game. 

Instructional designers should carefully construct corrective feedback for each question to ensure that it covers all objectives of the learning activity and offers enough information for the learner to comfortably move forward with the course.

Does On Time Matter?

You can work tirelessly to make sure a product or service will be delivered on time, but how useful is it if your consumer does not know how to use it?

Are you looking for ways to train staff or customers on robust services in a timely manner? Reach out to Nash-Boyd Learning Solution.

Strategy

We all know that a robust training strategy plays an integral role in driving the success of an organization. In spite of this, in my career of more than 30 years, I have spent quite a bit of time explaining that training strategy is not a bunch of PowerPoint slides thrown together to create “training” for staff and customers.  

In fact, there is a lot more that goes into putting together a training strategy. In my experience, developing a training strategy is very similar to what engineering teams do to put a product strategy in place. 

Before designing your training strategy, it is important to identify the goal of the training team. Why do you need to create training? Is it to drive awareness and adoption of your product or service? Is it because you want to build and validate the technical skills of your field and customers on your product or service? Or is it because your training team is a P&L organization and you want to make a profit?

Strategy

Let Nash-Boyd Learning Solution help you in identifying the best strategy for your next project.

Storytelling! It is the Right Ingredient for Training

Is storytelling the right fit for training? The answer is a resounding “Yes!”

Using storytelling to deliver content is effective because it engages learners, helps them retain their learning, and helps you organize your content more efficiently. Indeed, the benefits are clear:

Stories provide a realistic context for content.

Stories convey action versus static information.

Stories motivate participants to connect with content.

Stories add interest to learning programs.

But there are many different kinds of stories, so you need to find one that makes a relevant point and fits the content.

We are preparing a video so that you can view the effectiveness of Storytelling in your learning environment.

Allow Nash-Boyd Learning Solution to bring classroom engagement into your training.

Webinar – Is it right for your organization

In its traditional definition, a webinar is an online seminar. Like a webcast, a webinar is also primarily one-way communication from a presenter to attendees.

However, webinars often employ interactive techniques such as polling, chatting, or whiteboard annotating.

If you think about how television newscasts have evolved over time, many modern news programs now incorporate audience interaction through social media and other techniques. It’s the same with a webinar. The information shared is mostly one-way from speaker to audience.

The speaker(s) use slides to present, while periodically involving attendees through polls and other brief interactions.

While some webinars can be highly interactive, most are not.

You might think of a webinar like a university class, with an expert professor behind a podium and hundreds of students sitting in an auditorium. The class will have some interactivity through questions-and-answers, assignments, and quizzes. But the large class size limits the type and frequency of interaction available.

Online technical support, training, teaching and learning concept showing hand holding a wrench and blank instructional booklet coming out of a computer with dramatic lightingz

If your organization’s human resources department decided to hold informational sessions about a new company travel portal, and throughout the event they offered several opportunities for discussion and dialog, then this type of session—if held online— could be called a webinar.

Add Scenarios Into Existing Training

Scenario based e-learning need not be an all or nothing design.  You can add scenarios to your existing courses – whether they are classroom based or e-learning to improve learning outcomes.

We have really witnessed the benefit of adding scenarios to the instruction and seeing the Return-On_Investment when participants are in the workplace.

I will be adding scenarios later this week to share how the scenarios improve in the workplace.

Your Portfolio

Keeping your portfolio organized helps us show our prospective employer our history and line of experience without a sweat.

We believe that a well-organized portfolio will demonstrate to our customers that we put some thought into learning and we are the resident experts in all we do.  

How do you handle your portfolio?

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Learning is our Passion

We will list some of our methods for organizing and showcasing our Portfolio over the next few days.

See you soon.

Continued Learning

Today, there are many reasons employees need to continue learning.

 woman by the window

They may need to learn how to use new tools, systems, technologies, processes or products.

Some make seek to improve upon their current skill set.

Others may want to broaden their knowledge so they can move up in the company or go in a new direction altogether. With self-directed learning, employees can absorb information at their own pace and on their own timeline.

When creating e_Learning courses –look at the content.   A high-quality, engaging, informative program keeps learners returning for each new module of a session. 

Who can you turn to for instruction and design.  Nash-Boyd Learning Solution. We understand Training and we use the technology that fits into your busy schedule.  

Want to find out more?  Reach out to us from the Contact Us Page .

E-Learning

E_Learning E-Learning and other technology-enabled learning programs like mobile learning continue to gain in popularity as corporations, non-profits, government agencies and educational institutions strive to deliver knowledge and skills more efficiently and effectively.   E_Learning is also enabling organizations to deliver significantly more training units than they had been able to deliver via classroom and on-the-job instruction. As demand for e_learning continues to increase, training organizations must remember to keep their focus on delivering quality training rather on the technology being used to deliver it. We at the Nash-Boyd Learning Solution utilize 5  key points when developing technology-based training. e reader flat