Most Read Social Media Posts of 2015

merry christmas
Merry Christmas from the British Institute for Learning & Development

As the year draws to a close we get the usual emails and social media posts about the top 1o events to follow in 2016 or the top 5 developments from 2015.

We have to jump on that bandwagon… But with a slight twist.

Our Social Media output is geared very much toward a curator of news stories so we thought we’d put together the top ten most popular news items from our Social Media.

In reverse order with

10 – 8 Key trends in Learning & Development 

9 – Don’t Sell Training to Senior Leaders

8 – What’s the Difference Between Training and Development

7 – How to Replace your Training Program with a real Learning Culture

6 – 10 Traps for E-Learning

5 – Only 11% of firms have a learning culture in place

4 – City & Guilds Kineo Report Highlights Lack of Collaboration in L&D

3 – 3 Things to Remember When Creating On-Demand E-Learning

2 – Is the Digital Revolution a Waste of Money

And our most read post of 2015…

1 – Learning Trends you can’t afford to ignore


What Have We Really Learnt in 2015

As we approach the end of the year we await the many blogs that review the year’s learning, reflections on the Big Events and the top ten things about XZY learning.

However we wanted to reflect on our experiences this year, as a business we deepened our relationship with the Training Foundation and aligned our joining criteria to their TAP qualifications as a result we were able to reduce our annual membership fees by almost 70% is some cases.

We also attended two of the big conferences this year: Learning and Skills in January which we felt is a poor relation to Learning Tech and we also attended World Of Learning in September. We attend World of Learning every year and are a big supporter of their work.

However at World of Learning this year we confirmed that it was by far our best year ever, and we reflected on why.

Some of the reasons we that we had a new and exciting story to tell, in that we launched our new membership joining criteria on the first day of the event. We were surprised at how well that was received.

Another reason my have been due to changes to our quality mark, which no longer requires membership of the Institute in order to become assessed.

Also World of Learning had some news strategies they held a Learning Design Live event and a fringe seminar programme.

We also compared World or Learning to Learning and Skills; our view is that because L&S is partnered with Learning Tech and based in London more people attend, however, many in our opinion are there anyway and come for a nose about, whereas World of Learning is based at the NEC in Birmingham as a result less people attend this event. Whilst less people attend the event we believe that attendees have to make an effort to go, therefore they are going for a reason.

We feel that this is what makes World of Learning a better show; again this year (2015) was still the best year ever with more people expressing an interest in joining the Institute than any of the previous events.

Coaching and Mentoring

Coaching and mentoring have been forgotten cousins of the learning and development profession.

There are many theories about why this might be, one of the main arguments for this is due to the proliferation of Life Coaches in the late 90’s and early 2000’s, but at the British Institute for Learning & Development we believe that coaching is an integral part of L&D.

Coaching isn’t a new art, it’s as old as teaching! there have been sports coaches for years, I used to be a bit of an amateur runner and in 1986/7 I had a running coach as part of the team that I trained with, I’m now a coach myself for Kickboxing.

What has changed in recent years is that coaching has gone from the sports arena into business, I don’t know when this change occurred but it was significant.

Coaching isn’t mainstream but the principles that have been developed from time immemorial have been applied to the business world and, more importantly, have now been enhanced. Coaches can now take coaching qualifications such as those offered by the Training Foundation.

The point of this blog isn’t to discuss what coaching is, there are plenty of sites for that, this is about the professionalism of the coaching industry. We see coaching and mentoring as an essential skills that anyone involved in L&D should have even if you don’t hold a qualification it’s likely that you exhibit those traits.

What is a new development is that some companies are now appointing Mentors not as a full time job but as a part-time role alongside their full time role.

Anyone involved in Coaching is part of the learning and development industry, therefore should look to become suitably qualified and then join a professional body. Those involved in mentoring are often at the very beginning of an exciting and reward new career path in learning and development, we’re in a position to help you explore that.

We’re holding a CPD event on the 2nd December on the topic of coaching and mentoring – more information can be found HERE

Rich Wootten

Business Manager for the British Institute for Learning & Development.

Important Information Regarding membership of the BILD

Dear Members

For a number of years the BILD has had a relationship with the Training Foundation and we have been impressed by the speed with which the TAP Programme has been adopted by employers across all strands of the private and public sectors. Today, there are more than 25,000 TAP-Certified L&D practitioners employed in more than 1,400 UK organisations and others in 32 countries.

The Board of the BILD has reached the conclusion that the TAP Programme now enables the Institute to move towards its key objective of professionalising a career in L&D. Today, at the World of Learning exhibition, the British Institute for Learning & Development was pleased to announce a deeper relationship with The Training Foundation.

This relationship is a great step forward for the industry, it has long been a passion of the BILD to have the industry properly recognised as a true profession and now by ensuring that future members of the BILD have invested in a high standard of education we can boast that claim.

In order to better professionalise the learning and development industry we will now insure that from the 1st October 2015 all new applicants will need to first hold a TAP qualification. This enables us to guarantee that our members are qualified to a very high and consistent standard.

What does this mean to you, our current members?

Your membership and membership level of the BILD will not change, and this is great news for you, because as a result of this relationship we can now offer the following:

1.       Reduced Annual membership fees

From the 1st Oct these are now reduced from

·       £120 to £40 for Associates

·       £130 to £50 for Members

·       £140 to £60 for Fellows

We have now taken away the International membership, so there will be no difference in Membership between UK members and International members.

2.       Sustain the Institute

As a result of this new relationship we are able to ensure the Institute’s growth for years to come, so there will always be a champion for L&D professionals.

3.       Discounted access to TAP Qualifications

In order to ensure that you can continue to develop professionally we have secured a 50% discount on TAP qualification from the Training Foundation.


In summary your membership and level will not change as long as you remain a member of the BILD, we have ensured the BILD will be here for many years to come, the cost of membership of the BILD has almost halved and you will be able to get huge discounts off TAP courses.

We believe that this is excellent news for the institute and we are proud to partner with the Training Foundation.

Yours sincerely,

David Apparicio                                                                          Rich Wootten

Chairman                                                                                   Business Manager

British Institute for Learning & Development                             British Institute for Learning & Development

Is the Role of the Company Trainer Dead?

Once apon a time there was a company trainer, his name was Johnny and his job was to make sure that all the employees of ACME Engineering company got all the training that the company decided that they needed.

As it was an engineering company and Johnny used to be an engineer; his job was relatively easy, in fact, Johnny still considered himself an engineer, just one who’d become so skilled in his job that he could teach others how to do it.

And Johnny went on like this for years. However, the world outside of ACME Engineering changed in those years, and the workforce fell behind, innovation just wasn’t happening in ACME and the bosses said that the staff needed more training, Johnny felt out of his depth…

And so modern learning and development hit ACME Engineering with a thump! As changes needed to be made.

OK this is a rather simple example but you get where I’m going with this.

So is the role of the company trainer dead? Well I’d hope for all employees everywhere that the “Johnny’s” of the world have retired or updated to become L&D professionals. There may be one or two out there.

I don’t think that the role of the Classic Company trainer is dead, however I think it has changed beyond what Johnny may recognise it to be, for a example many no longer refer to themselves as Trainers, we’re much more used to being called L&D professionals now. The role has also significantly changed, in that it focuses on the needs of the learner and aligns that with the objectives of the Company. Also there is a recognition that one L&D professional can’t be “All things to All men” and that external organisations have to be brought in to deliver certain things such as implementing E-Learning or delivering specialist training; therefore the role might encompass other things such as procurement and networking. Plus there is now an opportunity to work at a strategic level to set the direction of the organisation and to create a learning culture from within.

In conclusion the role is dead, in the way I described it with Johnny (thankfully!), but it has changed and developed it to a much more vibrant and influential role that is pivotal to the success of an organisation and it’s people.

Shiny new object

We’re all familiar with the shiny object, something that people tell you about to get you to stop doing what you are doing and pick up something else. Often its worse in business as there are no shortage of critics telling you that you should look at this shiny new object or this one. The modern world is full of shiny new objects and learning and development sees its fair share of them. Sometimes if you have been in L&D long enough you see the same objects float past a few times.

At the British Institute for Learning & Development we’re not ones for picking up shiny new objects, we have a plan or a goal and we stick to it.

However, a few days ago we stumbled across Periscope which seems to part of or attached to Twitter.

Periscope allows people to broadcast videos to their twitter feed. Which is a great marketing and content tool.

But we can see a great opportunity for the learning and development community too, particularly at CPD events and seminars (with permission) at our CPD events we actively encourage tweeting and don’t ask people to put their phones/tablets away.

We’re going to be using this at World Of Learning on 29th and 30th Sept.

Also we’ve just started (just done our first) a weekly Periscope session, we see this a great way to reach out to the L&D community.

So do yourself a favour and download Periscope to your phone or tablet and make sure you connect with the British Institute for Learning & Development @BILDdev “Up Periscope!”



Edutainment is a concept that has been around since 1970 according to Wikipedia. The idea is to keep people entertained whilst still imparting knowledge and to engage people and keep people interested by entertaining and educating them.

I’m sure we all remember some droning teacher from school trying to tell an old joke, edutainment has moved on from that.

And not only in the class room setting; Edutainment now exists in the E-Learning world as well. True, the L&D professionals who are standing up in front of a group need to engage and entertain as do colleagues in E-Learning and Blended learning.

I recently took a flight with Virgin, rather than the same old in flight briefing about safety and such like, they had an animation that was funny and entertaining, rather than reading my book as I would usually do, I found that I was actually watching the animation.

So Edutainment has some benefits to engagement but there is a fine line between educating and entertaining. For example at a BILD CPD event last year we had two speakers one was highly informative and spoke on the subject matter with a high depth and breadth of knowledge, however, had a mostly monotone voice and not entertaining at all. The other was the exact opposite, in so far as the speaker was “Content-lite” but could entertain an audience.

The irony is that the feedback was that the entertaining speaker was the better of the two.

Clearly the ideal L&D professional will be somewhere in between as no one wants to be dull, but there is no need to be a stand up comedian. Given that Edutainment now appears in E-Learning adds a new dimension to Edutainment.

For many Edutainment comes naturally, for some it won’t. However keep it simple, keep it light-hearted and you’ll Entertain and Educate.

Rich Wootten – Business Manager, British Institute for Learning & Development