Does online training works? It does for me. (2/2)

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Ok, do you feel up to continue this journey? Or just dying to go watch the last episode of The Simpsons? Hey, trust me: this was only the beginning, it is worth reading the entire ordeal! Like I’ve said: I’m no better, since I get easily distracted online with whatever!

But I take my career seriously, and training is an important part of my development as a software consultant. So, at the scheduled time me and thirty-four other people joined the Zoom meeting and the class started.

The trainer introduced himself; an eloquent guy, very funny, so funny that I thought he sounded like Luccas Neto, a well-known Brazilian youtuber that does goofy kid’s videos! We were off to a good start.

An unorthodox way of teaching?

First, he explained the training process, emphasizing that his teaching method was based in the suffering theory. Basically, this theory advocates that you need to suffer in order to learn! Well, this kind ‘a didn’t surprised me because I had always felted like this, although I was hoping this time was different.

Image: photo from Pexels

To begin the training, he introduced us Miro (not the painter, but equally artsy!): an application to work on creative projects, discuss designs, have brainstorming sessions, create mind maps and use boards. I loved this tool, so intuitive and with lots of potential.

We were then asked to write some basic information on a post-it, like name, company, role, and country. After, we had to distribute ourselves in five groups previously created for this purpose. Each group represented a company and the idea was to work together to find a solution for a fictitious client who was represented by the trainer.

Are we really learning?

Not wanting to be a spoiler, it all started to look like an interactive playground: I was totally engaged! Suddenly, all of us were part of a team that worked to find the solution for this imaginary client who wanted our fictional marketing company to increase its sales through social networks.

The entire course was structured around a scope of possible scenarios, as if the various groups were competitor companies working for the same project. As the class progressed, each of us had to complete different challenges through Miro and exchange ideas that would allow each group individually to come up with their own solution, gathering in private Zoom rooms.

Image: photo from Pexels

Between sessions, the progress of each group was observed and commented, raising very interesting discussions about the completely different solutions each group had come up for the same challenge.

So far, I haven’t talked about Kanban itself, have I? In fact, while I was completing the challenges, I thought very little about in what the training consisted of. Only at the end the trainer explained the concepts and principles of Kanban, comparing them with what we had learned during our work sessions.

And indeed, we really learned the principles and techniques amidst the chaos! I learned without even remembering I was in class, just playing pretend. It was also great to learn and experience from failure, which happened in some challenges, and I even made friends from “my” micro-company.

Some conclusions about online training.

As the course was not just practical and to show the efficiency and advantages of Kanban, the last couple hours were dedicated to present some real cases in which the methodology was adopted and produced interesting results.

You may wonder if this type of learning is for everyone? I believe it isn’t. But it’s only because we are all different people, some of us like to learn by reading or just listening, others do not like to interact while learning (trust me, I come from a computer engineering bachelor’s degree, I know what I am talking about).

But for me, if courses were all like this, I think I would become a full-time student.

Rui Maciel
Polarising Business Analyst

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Rui Maciel