Tuesday, June 30, 2009

LearningWare has a new website!

In case you haven't seen it, you should head on over to www.learningware.com and check out our new, totally redesigned website.

Not only is it spectacularly awesome looking, but it also has a bunch of new features designed by trainers, for trainers--like our new Learning Center.

The Learning Center includes:

  • Tips for being a better game show host, structuring your game, changing the rules and using game shows in training.
  • Expert interviews with Thiagi, Bob Pike, Lou Russell and more.
  • This blog--which will feature case studies, articles, game show tips and anecdotes, and LearningWare news.
  • And more to come--including more case studies and videos!
Head on over and check it out--and don't forget to give us your feedback!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Case Study: Unique Hospitality Training Method Leaves Them Wanting More

Industry Vet Mark Eggers Keeps Employees In The Know, When It Matters Most

As a veteran of the hospitality business, Mark Eggers knows how important customer service is. Now more than ever, the competition for the consumer buck is stiff and the hospitality experience overall has to be second to none. This all starts with training and development – the learning experience has to be engaging, cost-effective, and worthwhile, so it really can spell success. Some say “enjoyable training” is an oxymoron, but Eggers thinks the opposite, in part because of his key training tool –Gameshow Pro by LearningWare.

Eggers has been a trainer in the hospitality industry for more than 10 years. He uses Gameshow Pro, which puts his training curriculum in a game show format to encourage better engagement. In fact, he’s used Gameshow Pro the last four years, and he’s found it to be a lasting experience.

“It was great for the employees because you could take training material and make it more engaging with better knowledge retention. Many times the employees wanted to keep playing after we were done,” he said.

The hospitality industry is a several billion-dollar industry. A large part of its success relies on what employees take away from their training sessions and into their day-to-day roles. The ultimate goal is extraordinary customer service and a wonderful guest experience. That is why Eggers uses Gameshow Pro in his traditional classroom training regularly. It ensures knowledge retention with the trainees and rounds out the learning process.

“Gameshow Pro is like the cherry on top of the sundae. It adds the finishing touch to a session,” he said.

New AllPlay Web Video

We'll be back to the game show training tips shortly, but for now, we wanted to share the following video with you. It's a short walk-through of the new AllPlay Web software. Let us know what you think!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Extending an Invitation

Recently, we were at ASTD conference delivering a workshop on using game shows in training called, appropriately: "I'll take Learning for 500."

We ended with a slide that said "You've got a friend in the business." It had the contact information for both Dan Yaman, the founder and CEO of LearningWare, and Missy Covington, the communications director. (It even included Dan's cell phone number!)

What we meant by that was that the participants in the workshop could contact us up any time to ask questions about using game shows in their training sessions--even if they weren't using our software. These questions could range from hosting the game to creating the questions, to setting up the room for a game show...anything game show related in training, and we'd be willing to help.

Because we're *that* passionate about using game shows in training, we would like to extend this invitation to you.

x207 for Dan
x237 for Missy


We're dedicated to making your training successful using game shows. So give us a call today, and start revolutionizing your training.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

The Cure for the Common Webinar

My first webinar experience took place about 3 years ago. We were producing a live training event through our sister company, Live Spark, and wanted to get a solid grounding in our client's content so we sat in on one of their new product rollout webinars.

Webinars, at that time, were relatively new-ish. "How fantastic," I thought,"I can get up to speed quickly without having to leave my desk."

As the webinar progressed, however, my enthusiasm was quickly sapped. I'm not a particularly distraction-prone person, but after about 5 minutes I found myself (somewhat ashamedly and automatically) checking my email...checking the news highlights...trying to squeak in a little copyediting...

The webinar was a great way to reach people, but the problem was that it was just another deadly-dull-and-dry presentation. Not only that, but if it had been an in-person presentation, I would have been required to *try* to pay attention (or at least maintain that placid look of wakefulness). There wasn't even that level of accountability.

I don't blame that client. I've been in many, many other webinars since--and while they have been presented with varying degrees of skill, my mind was still left to wander...to email...to the news...to my other tasks...

There is just *no* way to ensure that attendees are paying attention. And if my mind is wandering, you can bet that every other attendee is experiencing brain check-out in mass as well.

More and more companies are doing webinars now--they're efficient and cost-effective in a world where offices are globalized and travel budgets are slashed. But if people aren't learning the webinar information--if they aren't engaged, if they aren't paying attention, if they aren't accountable--then webinars aren't a cost-effective solution, they're a waste of time.

Clearly, there was a problem here that needed a solution.

Hey, LearningWare had been the expert in making training engaging, memorable and fun for over 15 years... surely we would be able to come up with something to fix this new webinar problem, right?

Right.That's why LearningWare came up with AllPlay Web.
AllPlay Web lets you create a professional, fully-automated and engaging game show experience within your webinars. You can review and preview content, refresh the audience, and--most importantly--keep everyone engaged and accountable.

They have to pay attention to the presentation--their sense of competition is engaged and there might be a question on the material later.

They have to stay with you on the webinar instead of checking their email, because there is actual, tangible participation required on their part: registering their answers using their own keypads.

It's fun. It's engaging. It's memorable. It turns a common webinar into an interactive experience--truly making the webinar a cost-effective training and communication solution.

AllPlay Web even tracks how everyone answered, so you know where the knowledge gaps exist in your training. You can even ask survey questions.

We've just launched it in a beta version, it's awesome, and you should find out more about it here.

No, seriously, go check it out. Because not only is it absolutely revolutionary, but it's the first thing that's kept me on track--as a participant--during a webinar, *ever*.

And that's a pretty amazing feat. :)