transactions vs relationships - photo of two hands exchanging cedit card through laptop screen

Transactions or Relationships – Which are at the heart of your learning business?

“One and done. That’s the approach most of our education directors take.”

This was the view shared with me by the vice president of a national nonprofit organization recently.

Even more recently, a trade association called me in to talk with its network of education managers about moving away from a “transactional” (my contact’s words) approach to selling training to more of a long-term, needs-based approach.

These are just two examples. The same general theme echoes throughout our work over the past decade: too many organizations approach learning – whether through traditional meetings and seminars or online – as a transaction.

A registration to be processed.

An evaluation to be collected.

And then, a brief pause before starting the process again.

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We periodically run a survey to answer the question How are associations using learning technologies? And it’s that time again. If you work for a membership organization, we need your help. We just launched the survey that will be the backbone of the updated version of the Association Learning + Technology report due out in September.

The purpose of the survey and the resulting report is to better understand how associations are and aren’t using technology to deliver educational products and services. Your participation is very important—even if you do not currently use or plan to use technology to deliver or enhance your learning products and regardless of the size or budget of your association.

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Have you paid attention to recent podcast statistics? If not, now would be a good time to tune in. We recently published an episode of the Leading Learning podcast titled The Power of Podcasting. A big part of what prompted this episode was the release of the annual Infinite Dial report from Edison Research. Edison […]

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What kind of return on investment will we get from implementing a new or replacement learning management system (LMS)? Sometimes, organizations get bogged down with answering this question and spend way too much time and – in some cases – money searching for a precise answer. Analysis paralysis sets in. Other times, unfortunately, we discover it […]

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We’re not sure about “becoming” – it already is an imperative, in our view – but, in any case, The Economist has published a special report on lifelong learning that is well worth reading. It echoes many themes that are central to Leading the Learning Revolution as well as our writing and speaking in various […]

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One of the critical shifts we highlight in our 10 Critical Shifts in the Market for Lifelong Learning briefing is the growing need for organizations to invest in sales skills. Specifically, we write: In an increasingly competitive marketplace, it will be difficult for most organizations to thrive solely with retail, business-to-consumer sales of their educational […]

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Celisa and I had the chance to walk the expo floor at the ASAE Technology Conference recently, and as we have in the past, we wanted to highlight  the association LMS and technology-enabled learning providers that were there. The cost to show up and exhibit at the ASAE Technology Conference is not insignificant, so being there […]

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A while back I wrote about efforts of the Michigan Society of Association Executives (ASAE) to launch Third Thought, an online learning destination for its membership. Having used the platform successfully with members, MSAE is now launching Third Thought out into the broader association market. In this brief video, I talk with MSAE Cheryl Ronk […]

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If you want to assess the maturity of your learning business, there’s now a resource for you: the Learning Business Maturity ModelTM. The Learning Business Maturity Model articulates the characteristics and practices of a mature learning and education business or line of business, as well as the stages that typically precede full maturity. It is […]

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We’ve launched a new version of our survey on how membership organizations use social technologies as part of their learning products and services. Input from the survey will form the basis of a report we will share (for free) in the coming months, but first we need your help getting good data to share. If […]

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