Staff Training - 70:20:10 - great in theory - how do you make it work?

Article by Bruno Cozzi - Bluegum Software - Perth 

This article deals with practical implementation, but as an introduction, there are 3 reasons I like this article: Provoking Deeper Thinking - Ryan Tracey

  1. It sequences the concept the right way round. Although we usually refer to it in the sequence 70:20:10, we generally acquire it the other way round, i.e. we start by learning something in a structured environment before moving on to experience and peer discussions.
  2. It explains the concepts well.
  3. It presents an honest and qualified view of the importance (or lack of importance) of focusing on the numbers.

So let's assume we can put the numbers aside and agree that 70:20:10 works in today and our real question is about how to implement it. I'm sure this won't surprise everyone, but we LMS vendors have less implementation experience than most of you do as L&D professionals, trainers and assessors.

So if its true that LMS vendors have less experience than you, why is an LMS vendor lecturing you about how to implement 70:20:10? 

I think it's less to do with experience and more to do with a different point of viewMaking established processes work in cloud applications presents new ways to view and solve problems. Having said that, I'm not advocating a pure tech solution either. As I suggested in my last article, face-to-face training will always have a place. And to be honest, that's how many of us want it.

The xAPI Approach

In eLearning terms xApi is the successor to SCORM, which is an eLearning platform that enables you to deliver electronic content, have the student interact with a quiz, bookmark their place in the course and transfer tracking and results to a compliant Learning management System (LMS).

Now for the big secret! The limitations of SCORM are the reasons so many of us are dissatisfied with eLearning.

  • Interaction is only possible with online quizzes and menu actions that a computer can mark, e.g. multi-choice, fill-in-the blank etc. This greatly limits assessment capabilities.
  • SCORM provides no mechanism for team / group activities. Learning is experienced and tracked at an individual level.
  • SCORM doesn't allow for learning experience across multiple platforms and modalities. Basically, you'd have to commence and complete your online course on a single device. And integrating face to face, webinar, social experiences would be excluded.
  • Until fairly recently, ALL SCORM content had to be delivered in FLASH which made SCORM courses unsuitable for mobile devices. Today, almost all SCORM authoring tools support HTML 5 and offline mode (disconected from the internet).

Enter xAPI, or the Tin Can Project, as it was dubbed by Rustici Software, the developers of the new standard released in 2013. xAPI plugs many gaps in SCORM. In particular, xAPI can be used to track individual and group learning experiences on-line, face-to-face training and assessment, work-place training, tracks experience across multiple devices, all sorts of interactions.

Video Reference: Introduction to Tin Can API - GP Strategies

The main reason xAPI succeeds where SCORM failed is its ability to track and record learning experiences. LMS Vendors like Bluegem are able to use code in the form of "Statements" to track online, face-to-face, mentoring activities, group interactions, social learning and activities collected across multiple devices.

In short, anything you might want to achieve in a 70:20:10 program can potentially be fully tracked and recorded through xAPI, including the 20% interactivity phase with peers and colleagues, and most importantly the 70% experience component.

But what about Continuous Professional Development (CPD). For many industries this is a vital for a professional to maintain currency in a role or capability, e.g. for Public Safety officers in the fire and emergency services; Financial Planners, and Real Estate Agents, Medical Professionals, etc.

The good news is xAPI can be used to track, assess and verify ALL learning interactions and experiences. So when a learner attends a conference, participates in a refresher course, or is deployed to a significant incident, experiences an online course in LinkedIn; all these activities can be tracked and stored to build a complete picture of learning experiences across multiple contexts.

What about other approaches, non xAPI?

The key benefit of xAPI is that it delivers "interoperability", the ability for multiple platforms to share in the collection and storage of learning experiences by adhering to a common set of protocols, i.e. xAPI. When the web browser that you use is capable of recording your browsing experiences, storing them as 'incidental' or 'social' learning on a new type of "LMS" called a Learning Records System (LRS).

Yes it is possible to design student management and learning management systems that can integrate and track both online, face-to-face and blended learning. As you probably know, Bluegem and other SMS/LMS vendors have had this capability for the past 4 or 5 years. These are monolithic systems. 

Their limitation is that they only record what happens within the SMS/LMS context . Systems that collaborate on "interoperable standards" like xAPI can share learning experiences across multiple platforms to collate a more complete learner profiles. 

But the advantage that xAPI brings is quantum leap ahead of what SCORM delivered in 2001, i.e. the ability of compliant systems and learning content to interoperate effectively across the internet.

So if SCORM could do it in 2001what's this quantum leap? 

SCORM content and learning management systems (LMS) could only interoperate in avery restricted eLearning context. But xAPI has no such limitations. Systems and content can use Tin CAN API Statements to communicate, track and verify ANY kind of learning experience.

Bluegem implements the Tin CAN API - Learning Records System (LRS) hosted by Rustici Software, the inventors of all things SCORM and xAPI 
Try Bluegem for one Month | Contact us for a demo | Watch the video.

Want Capital or Equity - Maybe Crowdfunding is the way to go ?


EquitiseEquitise offers an equity crowdfunding platform for private investors to invest in early-stage companies and startups. Founded 2014 by Chris GilbertJonathon Wilkinson and Panche Gjorgjevski, Equitise is a trans-Tasman investment platform. They bring together the Australasian investment network, providing a platform for high growth and innovative companies to partner with investors who believe in them. Equitise is backed by Investec, AWI, H2 Ventures, Tank Stream Ventures, BridgeLane Capital and well-known Angels. They are creating an intuitive and automated investment ecosystem which is highly social and inclusive for all investors.


CoVentured is a platform designed to connect Startups and Corporates. Founded by the team behind Australian corporate accelerator, Slingshot, CoVentured was created to bridge the gap between corporates looking to explore the innovation of startups and startups looking to leverage the credibility and client base of corporates. CoVentured is a communication platform which allows both startups and corporates to create profiles and more easily find and understand one another. General Manager Nick Dunford and Slingshot CEO Karen Lawson officially launched the platform just a few weeks ago with 2000 startups and 25 corporates on board. Corporate clients include the likes of Westpac, Woolworths, Lendlease and Australia Post. CoVentured aim to be the obvious first step for corporates and startups looking to connect with the other side.

Artworks at Carriageworks Sydney Contemporary Art Expo

Pieces that caught my eye 

Honey and Pru


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  • It means innovation and continuous improvement, building resilience and leading, motivating and inspiring a diverse team of employees and alliance partners. 
  • It means leads, proposals and sales 
  • It means communicating and retaining your customers  - the right customers
  • It means understanding who your customers are and where they are spending their time, and engaging them to buy your product or service
  • It means understanding social media and having the skills to communicate your value proposition to your prospects.
  • It means having a team around you to supplement your skills . A team that you know like and trust
  • It means providing a brilliant customer service 
  • It means having the systems and processes to be able to scale
  • It means knowing your numbers and understanding and managing your cash flow!  (Making sure more money comes in that goes out!!)

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How to become succcesful

This  weeks Bob Pritchard Column - aligns with Tony Robbins message during his 4 day programmme “unleash the power within” this week in Sydney - where Tony is sharing  his strategies to make you successful with 8000 people 

Each one of these 8000 WANT to feel successful 

Bob nails 

The only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be.  —Ralph Waldo Emerson
The biggest difference between successful people and unsuccessful people isn't intelligence or opportunity or resources. 

Success comes to those who believe in themselves and their abilities, those who believe they can make their goals happen.
What you believe influences the way you interpret events, how you feel, and how you behave. And much of the time, those beliefs turn into self-fulfilling prophecies.
Use a skill called "acting as if.” 

 According to Jack Canfield, co-creator of Chicken Soup for the Soul and author of The Success Principles, by acting “as if,” you will become the kind of person who is capable of creating the kind of success you want – and this will trigger your subconscious mind to find creative ways to achieve your goals. You will start noticing anything that will help you succeed. Best of all, you will start acting on these opportunities, because you will have the confidence that your efforts will yield great results.

You are a “Brand”.  Write down all your positive attributes.  
What do you love about yourself ?
What do you hate about yourself?
What are you passionate about?
What do you believe your success is?

Ask parents, ask siblings, ask friends what they like most about…you.  

That’s you, that’s “Brand You”.

Is that congruent to what you want to be? 

If not - what are the things that you need to do to make a change! Create your ideal “Brand You”

Get a notebook and write down what you want (or what success means to you in each part of your life)

Physically, Emotionally, Spitiually, In your Business, In your  Home 

 Now, just act like it and dress like it. Be confident and behave as if you are a savvy person. That doesn't mean you need to be a phony; instead, behave in a way that follows these simple concepts:
Belief – Believing in yourself is all about being sure that you are going to do what you want even if others stand against you.  Remember, it’s your goal, not your brother’s, not your best friend’s, not your parent’s.  Don’t waste time focusing on what others think, it’s what you believe so take control and use positive thinking daily and watch yourself becoming more successful and getting closer to the prize.
Dedication – It’s part of your make-up.  It’s part of the way you do things.  Remember that all successful people have been dedicated to what they are doing.  So should you.  Write it down and look at it every day. 
(And practice it until it just becomes automatic Make it a habit - make it a ritual) 
Focus – It’s a focal point that you aim for.  For example, the object in target shooting is to aim for the center.  The same standard applies for success.  Successful people call these centers goals. 
Skill – It’s the right combination of skill sets in order to be successful in whatever you have chosen as your path to make a difference in the world. To attain that skill Once you need to  practice with unrelenting persistence at shooting that centre until you achieve that goal. 
You can succeed in whatever you choose to do.  It can be anything you can dream of.  

It’s about taking chances, being proactive and ready. 
It’s about “giving it a go” - and taking “massive focussed action” 

Great things are not going to happen for you unless you believe it, see it in your mind and focus on that goal. Keep your eye on your goal…your prize.
The success you will enjoy will be because you have helped other people get what they want.   Zig Ziglar said … You can have everything in life you want, if you will just help other people get what they want.   
The elevator to success is out of order. You'll have to use the stairs ... one step at a time

Where are you on the Ikigai chart?

Inspired by Charles Hugh Smith 

The secret is continuous learning - do you know how to learn how to learn?

  • Where are you on the Ikigai chart?
  • Where do you want to be?
  • What effort and sacrifices is needed?
  • Do you know what your Ikigai is? 
  • How do you get there?
  • Once you get there - is there another Ikigai that you need to achieve? 

Many people aspire to be more than they are, but most don’t.

To achieve change requires sacrifice and effort, and as the inertia of our default settings grows ever heavier with age, it is more and more difficult to change that status quo!

Everything requires effort and sacrifice to maintain: relationships, friendships, organizations, enterprises, roadways, social contracts, your body, your home, your team--everything. 

If effort flags, things fall apart.

As we get older - the weight of our default settings seem to  rise as our ability to generate the motivation , effort and desire to make sacrifices and change seems to decrease.

Does this need to happen 

A human tends to have 4 stages of a work life 

Stage 1  - exploration 

When we're young and just out of high school or college, we have very little baggage (unless we married and had children at a tender age), and so the effort to change--to move, change jobs, etc.--is significant but modest compared to future costs.

This is when we pursue our dreams, and rightly so: 

start a business, travel, break into the arts, film, music or move to Silicon Valley  to seek one's fortune.

Few gain the success they hoped for and so most move on to some place and career that can sustain a livelihood, marriage, family, career or enterprise. 

Stage 2 - status quo 

Then a decade or so hence, the inertia has piled up and we sense our ability to make a radical course change is fading as the costs of change--the effort and sacrifice necessary to throw aside the inertia and gamble on a different path--is steepening.

Responsibilities, relationships, children, parents, employees, fear etc .

We feel that’s it’s ok that we are somewhere in the Ikigai chart

Stage 3 -  mid life crisis 

We sense it's now or never, and this can manifest as a mid-life/mid-career crisis.

The experience of this crisis varies with each individual, but in some way, the individual discovers they cannot continue doing what they're doing--they run out of the ability to keep making the sacrifices and effort required to keep their current life from falling apart.

In this crisis, there is no choice but to chance a major course change and risk the storms of the unknown.

Stage 4 - Retirement 

In an astonishingly brief blur, we reach the age of retirement - where we have no choice but to reappraise our inertia/default settings and our ability to turn the ship of our life onto a new course.

This re-appraisal can be a chance to have a more fulfilling life or pursue a long-suppressed dream. 

It's little wonder than the retirement of one spouse can trigger a divorce, as one or the other partner decides this is their last chance to jettison an unsatisfactory relationship and seek another way of living, despite the risks and the losses such wrenching changes incur.

If one has ideas--for inventions, music, fiction, art, enterprise, organizations, way of life, sea change -- the question in one's retirement becomes: If not now, when?

Can we muster up the effort to make whatever sacrifices are needed to get our ideas out into the world before we die? 

You must not allow your ability to conjure up effort and willpower to fade - as when that happen - things will start falling apart.

It is very difficult to maintain effort and willpower and motivation to achieve and change without the support of a partner, mentor, coach or group of people that you know like and trust! 

I have found that people and teams that succeed have the support of people around them. 

Who are your people ? 

To help you maintain that effort and willpower and motivation you need to hone your ability to learn. 

Make it a habit to continually learn and explore .

Learn how to learn 

Find a group of people that you feel comfortable with to share this journey of learning and collaboration. 

Be the teacher  as well as the student .

As I was writing this article this morning - I was walking in Martin Place and this was staring at me