This post was originally published by Carl Miller on lessonly.com.
I’m sitting at home, watching college basketball, working through a few training modules to finish up my onboarding. I hear a coach screaming and turn my attention to the TV. One player is oblivious to the coach’s attempts to get through to him, so the coach calls a timeout. He sends the player off the court and to the end of the bench with an assistant coach carrying a clipboard. I thought to myself, “Yikes, he missed something, presumably in practice, and now he’s paying for it.” I turn back to my computer and the training module I’m working on… Interesting.
When I was coaching, this happened all the time. Players struggled to learn plays and concepts in real-time and retain them. And that’s because learning has evolved. An integral part of my daily work includes using an online learning system to ensure I stay ahead of the game. If online training software like this was available when I was coaching, would it have changed the way I coached? Better yet, would it have changed the way my players learned?
I held onto this thought for a few minutes.
Countless hours spent drilling players on offensive and defensive sets. Asking players what should happen next on an out-of-bounds play and receiving silence accompanied with a crowd of blank stares. Taking two days off until our next practice only to realize we forgot everything—again. While these challenges weren’t unique to my team, they needed to be solved if we were ever going to progress.
Now, let’s be realistic. Coaches spend years trying to develop the training notebook, and there are very few coaches in the world of amateur sports that would go out and adopt an online training solution to help their players learn the ins and outs of the game. But if they could, what would it look like?
Well, we would need to address these three truths:
1. Players learn at different speeds.
New season. Coach rolls out a new playbook and you’ve got two weeks to learn it. Some players will know it like the back of their hand by the end of the first practice. Other players will sit on the bench for a couple weeks because they can’t figure it out. We all learn differently, so the system needs to act like an online personal trainer; one that holds your hand through the process but allows you to learn at your own pace.
2. Coach can’t coach 24/7.
For many teams, practice is limited to just a handful of practices a week. That’s four, maybe six hours. How much can we possibly cover in such a short window? A solution must be a tool that gives players the flexibility to learn when they’re away from the gym, away from a physical coach being in their presence. If the information is accessible when coach is not, players can learn their way.
3. Learn from your mistakes and practice.
The best teams in the world excel by learning from their mistakes. After each game, coaches analyze what happened, and they make changes for their future practice plans. In order to be a successful team, the ability to adapt the training material easily and rapidly for the next time we need it is a must.
It’s business, not basketball
When I joined Lessonly by Seismic, I didn’t initially make the connection with my new company and my coaching days. I focused on learning, just like other new employees. Some will use a learning management system to get started, some will have classroom training, and others might have more specialized employee training solutions. These tools are in place to help make learning easy and efficient. But not all tools are created equal, and that’s what made me fall in love with learning at Lessonly by Seismic.
When it comes to everyday business, we address three areas:
1. People learn at different speeds.
In a world of solutions, we put the learner first. Lessons within the platform are easy, catered to each position, and outlined with a learning path that allows each learner to progress at their own pace. Don’t understand a lesson? Restart it or revisit it. Missing information? Search for it. The learner is in control every step of the way, and it’s a beautiful thing. Pair that with access to review the material or see updates to processes later down the road and you’ll truly be set up for success.
2. There is finite time to learn from the people that know it.
Every training process comes with its challenges. Most often we identify that there isn’t enough time for learners to learn from subject matter experts. It’s not economical and often businesses cannot afford for key employees to be away from the job to spend ample time training new staff. That’s where we step in. Take the most experienced people in each department or team, have them assist in the creation of an online employee training software and see immediate savings. Processes, training, and information all become accessible from anywhere, and your team can jump in to learn what they need wherever and whenever they want, without needing a “coach” to guide them through the learning.
3. What’s working? What’s not? What’s missing?
When it comes to online training courses for employees, many companies roll out information in the beginning, and it’s difficult to access it again or it becomes outdated (think traditional employee LMS). We look at learning as a living entity that’s constantly evolving. Just like in sports, everything changes after you play that next game. If something is working, revisit it in practice. If something isn’t working, switch it up and practice something new. If something is missing, get creative and add it.
Long story short, we could revolutionize basketball with online training software. But we’ll start with revolutionizing learning for business.
Building a world-class team, whether we’re talking about basketball or frontline teams, takes both learning and practice, and we help teams do both. Click here to get a quick look at what we do.