I’ve recently changed jobs. More accurately, today was my first day at a new, amazing opportunity that I’m incredibly excited about. Even more accurately, “new” is perhaps overstating it – I’ve worked here before, on the same team, and returned for a great new adventure with a team I love.
Someone asked me a challenging question about my situation today. The question was something like, “what was it like, over there? obviously something happened if you’re back.” And he’s right, isn’t he?
I was only gone for 9 months. I left 9 months ago to work on a new learning team – helping to develop healthcare SMEs into learning professionals. I loved it. I developed an online learning community between parent and child companies, I created and facilitated a 2 day instructional design workshop, I did learning bites about flipped classrooms, learning delivery channels, and terminology. We talked performance support and learning on demand and were working with our business partners to set expectations. We were definitely on the right track when a reorg happened and the strategy changed and I was the last man standing as a team of one.
But I digress. I was explaining why I left so that I could explain why I came back. It struck me today, as I tried to explain why I left and why I returned and why I’m so excited for the opportunity before me that it may come down to one small word:
The opportunity at the other job was still there. I was a team of one who would create her own path and forge her own way and relationships. But it wasn’t FUN anymore. Without my team of SMEs-turned-Learning, I was working alone, had no real work friends on the floor, and had no one to collaborate and elaborate with. This new job is amazing and has great potential and opportunity, but it struck me today, as I watched my team mates shoot each other with nerf bullets while talking learning, that what I craved most as a learning professional was a fun environment where my creativity could reignite.
And that’s what I have to remember as I begin to design learning for this new group – learning needs the right environment: collaborative, where bonds are created and ideas are tested; the adult version of “learning through play”.