Learning Technologies 2016, or #LT16uk, is the largest L&D conference in the UK. The expo was similar to many U.S. conference expos only much bigger and always filled with attendees. The conference also had a similar feel to it. And with dedicated "tweeters" in each session the event backchannel was quite active. It's an event you attend no matter where you are based in the world.
The Day 1 keynote was from Marshall Goldsmith who has been called the number one executive coach in the world. He doesn't get paid unless his clients improve. Now that's confidence. His message was engaging and thought provoking. If you scroll down through the LITMOS Twitter stream you should find a Periscope of the session but I think the event coordinators are also making the video available on their website.
The Day 2 Keynote was Ben Hammersley a noted futurist and journalist. Hammersley has authored or coauthored several books on the same topics. In his keynote he brilliantly told stories of how the future is being created. And he urged us as a community of L&D professionals to remember that we all need to learn how to learn...again. I noted in a tweet that we should also point out that it's about learning how to learn with new tech not learning how to teach with new tech. It's a paradigm shift the L&D industry as a whole struggles to embrace.
The concurrent sessions were well attended. They covered the spectrum of L&D topics including Mobile learning, learning leadership, marketing the training department, video for learning, performance support, and all the other usual hot topics in our industry. The L&D community is certainly growing in the UK. Over the years I've met many new colleagues online via Twitter and other channels. So getting to meet them all face to face was an added bonus.
My attendance at Learning Technologies was part of supporting a new ELearning charity called Learn Appeal. Litmos is the first U.S. Based company to support their mission. Lesley Price is leading the effort and describes herself as Chief Cook and Bottle Washer. Currently she is hard at work looking gathering ELearning content to load onto the Capsules that are sent to schools and rural communities that have no connectivity. And you may ask yourself how are they doing ELearning without internet connectivity. And that is the brilliant solution they've created with the Learn Appeal Capsule. I will have a short video posted soon, and you can check out their website at learnappeal.com to learn more.
Currently you can help by becoming a sponsor. Or if instead you'd like to donate your time, they need content created. And it's really not that big of a commitment. You could simply volunteer to convert content currently in pdf format to something more engaging. Or if you have more time or resources I would encourage you to engage with them in creating some custom content. Lesley has designed the Learn Appeal organization to be a charity for the L&D community since it's a community she's been a member of for many years. Give her your support in any way you can.