Today, I am starting the DESIGN of my Welcome Keynote for Sunday night at Learning 2011. Each year, I look at an emerging trend or opportunity for learning - made available as an affordance by new technologies or new behavioral patterns. This year, one of those is:
Nano-Coaching or Nano-Mentoring
Consider the opportunity to provide daily or weekly VERY SHORT coaching or mentoring - from a person with expertise to the learner/worker who is attempting to learn or improve a process or behavior.
When I say VERY SHORT, I do not mean 15 minute conversations. In fact, Nano-Coaching may happen via email, Instant Messenger and could be as quick as 3 minutes. My source for this model is a good friend and colleague, Marshall Goldsmith - who was my coach - and would call me every evening for 2 minutes to ask my a series of quick questions including (how often did you finish the sentence of one of your staff or did you un-delegate a task to your team).
Nano-Coaching could be delivered from a variety of sources:
- Mentoring Call Center (internal or external)
- Manager Delivered
- Retiree's as Contract Mentors
- Peer within an internal Social Network
- Crowd-Sourced to a Collaborative Process
On a very personal note, I have been using Nano-Coaching for a quest to get healthier in my 61st year. Since March 1st, I have been working with a doctor in Arizona on a changed diet and increased level of exercise. Every day, I enter the specifics of all that I have consumed and any exercise - along with periodic weigh-ins. I get weekly emails with comments, suggestions and even pushes (stop eating so many avocados - they look healthy but are pretty fattening). And, every few weeks we talk for a few minutes.
A number of our Learning CONSORTIUM members have been experimenting with Nano-Coaching as a support or alternative to traditional training approaches. They are seeing some dramatic increases in effectiveness and even have tracked how Nano-Mentoring can boost average sales per field representative.
We have a lot to consider and experiment with Nano-Coaching. From what technology to use, to methodologies, frequency and where it is not appropriate or effective - as well as the global implications in other cultures.
I am very excited to explore Nano-Coaching. It has helped me get much healthier, loose 50 pounds and have even more energy to get ready for my Opening Keynote at Learning 2011 in just 46 Days!