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Out Front in the Progressive Learning Revolution

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ShoreTel’s Cloud division Learning Team has been working on our strategic plan for 2013 and we couldn't be more excited.  One of our goals is to further our position as a thought leader corporate learning.  We believe the corporate world is ripe for a Progressive Learning Revolution and we are at the forefront.  To us, this means learning, for our staff, needs to be:

  • Easily accessible, always available
  • Frictionless
  • Structured, for those who need it
  • Social, as knowledge is held by a community, not a course
  • Accompanied by assessments that are learner-centric, not instructor centric
  • A vehicle to promote collaboration and entrepreneurism.

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The face of learning is changing everywhere and it’s been a long time coming. The Progressive education movement can be traced all the way back to at least the turn of the 20th century in the John Dewey’s Democracy and Education, a text every teacher-to-be runs into in graduate school.  Upon a recent review, I myself wondered what is taking so long for our public education systems to catch up to something that seemed pretty apparent over 100 years ago. Even more shocking, well-resourced corporate learning programs don’t demonstrate an understanding of how people learn. Corporate training=boring PowerPoints and hard to use learning management systems (LMS) that do anything but inspire learners.

Universities are catching on though. One of my teammates pointed to a recent New York Times article as evidence.  College of Future Could Be Come One, Come All, highlights the growing popularity of massive online open courses, or MOOC’s that universities are using to “harness the power of their huge enrollments to teach in new ways, applying crowd-sourcing technology to discussion forums and grading and enabling professors to use online lectures and reserve on-campus class time for interaction with students”

We at ShoreTel are constantly chasing the perfect learning environment. Our famous Battle of The Bands and jiujitsu programs are legendary.  But we want to do even more and are always looking for technologies to help. We look to partner with companies that understand or share our learning philosophies. Examples include a recent and exciting start up called Sales Mentor and Blackboard Learn for Salesforce who recently recognized our position as a though leader in corporate learning and created a video about our learning programs.

We look forward to 2013 with a renewed energy about learning and growth at ShoreTel. Watch us and learn!