• LMS as a Weather Warning System

    by  • January 10, 2014 • Learning Technologies • 0 Comments

    Imagine you had a way to predict bouts of bad performance or tropical storms incompetence before they hit the shores of your organisation. Imagine no longer – your LMS can do that.

    Imagine you had a way to predict bouts of bad performance or tropical storms incompetence before they hit the shores of your organisation. Imagine no longer – your LMS can do that.

    This fantastic little video from Dr. Marty Jopson tells the story of how weather predictions moved to space. This is a relatively new technology, one that has been developing since the 60s. From dark, grainy images, to high res imagery and radiometer video feeds that gives meteorologists information about what the weather looks like (with light cameras) and what it feels like (with heat cameras).

    Overlay the two sets of data – hey presto, you have yourself a weather warning system.

    The challenge in making the predictions more reliable was the need to have a live stream of data. Not only that, but to accurately predict the unpredictable movement of air and moisture, you need to have as many points that collect data over as wide an area as possible. So, while weather station and buoys still serve a purpose, weather satellites supplement these with accurate, live streams of information.

    Your Very Own Network of Weather Satellites

    How is this relevant to organisations? Well – imagine you are about to invest some money into developing a new product. A lot of work will go into the development, and a lot of work will go into upgrading and maintaining it once it was launched.

    Imagine that you have yourself a network of satellites hovering over your teams, taking accurate measurements of their levels of knowledge, their capability. What do they need to know to make your new product a success vs. their current knowledge and ability.

    Now add to that a deeper, strategic level of information – what are their career aspirations? What are their objectives? How good are they at meeting objectives? Where are the synergies between their career and job aspirations and where your company is headed?

    Overlay all this data, and you are building your own weather warning system for capability and performance: the first steps towards true strategic L&D and true strategic HR.

    Flexible Imaging Technology, Lots of Weather Stations

    Firstly, an LMS is that it offers you the flexibility to create your “imaging technology”: how do you measure performance? How do you set objectives? Who does what, when and how? How do you track career aspirations? How do you link career aspirations to objectives? How do you link those to performance? How do you feed all that into learning requirements? How do you feed knowledge and ability measurements back into performance, career and learning needs?

    A well set-up LMS will allow you to create the images that you need to be able to make accurate predictions about capability weather and act before a storm of incompetence hits.

    Secondly, an LMS is a live, on demand system that is fed by all the people in your organisation. Set it up to meet their needs as well as yours, and you have a collaborative platform that gives you a constant feed of live data from the widest area possible.

    The people who use the system to track their performance, manage their career aspirations and progression, link those two into meaningful learning and development plans. They are all weather stations in the planet or your organisation.

    You can tap into that information and gauge accurate readings about knowledge and capability, performance and aspirations. These amount to the temperature, speed and direction at which they each (and all) are headed.

    Isn’t that a great way to help propel your business to where it needs to go?


    Does your LMS serve as a competence, capability and performance weather warning system? Let us know! Comment below!

    Would you like to turn your LMS into a strategic component in your organisation? Contact us.


    Photo used is from PBS.org.

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