Well, that was a bit of a strange experience last week. I’ve written posts on this blog for over a year in calendar terms but maybe 6 months in real terms. I made a concerted effort to post more earlier this year and the results are clear. I’ve posted 4 times as often as I did previously and have 8 times as many views as a result. I think there may be a few reasons for this happening.
Firstly, it would appear an audience has found me; my most recent post has been the most read by a mile. It was written after an informal meeting where someone had talked about a blended learning approach to a performance issue. They called it blended learning, I heard a ‘classroom with a bit of elearning’ solution. On my tube journey on the way home I threw a few hundred words together and then added to and edited it following a conversation on Twitter with Meg Bertapelle. I liked it’s narrative and my voice within it. I didn’t expect the numbers of views and retweets via Twitter though.
What made it read by so many people? In it, I slated the industry (L&D) I’ve worked in for 20 years. I held a mirror up to bad practice and it was recognised by many. People have commented within the article and added more that I hadn’t thought of, placing additional layers of irony.
Making my blog personal seems to have helped; I posted about being ill and it seemed to invigorate my readership. I know it invigorated my writing. I’ve found it easier to add posts by concentrating less on creating a perfectly formed piece of work and spend more time thinking between posts now of what I could write. I’m also writing snappier posts – no more than 4-500 words. This means I now seem have a list of 2-3 posts in draft form all the time and, knowing the content is readily available, I feel the pressure is off to produce something amazing.
Mostly, I think that by telling stories the context helps. And isn’t that the key? Surely our role in L&D is about context now? I did a session this week looking at instructional design and some of the group found the idea of linking to existing content a challenge. The desire to ‘own’ a new piece of learning when dozens of perfectly valid examples already exist seems a waste of time to me.
The next post up will be the ‘real’ story of my most recent post detailing how I’d like a learning event to be.
Comments, as always, very welcome.