When we hear the phrases “YouTube generation” and “Generation C,” we automatically — and incorrectly — assume they refer to millennials. But these terms are not associated with any age band or year of birth. The C stands for connected. Generation C is a generation of people who rely on connection to technology daily.
Why should learning and development (L&D) professionals care? Because these folks are immersed in the world of technology. They consume, create and curate and are the first to leave a review on social media sites. Members of Generation C access information on social media and move seamlessly from one technology to another. They want information that is clickable and visual.
The problem is that we are used to categorizing learners as visual, auditory or kinesthetic. Generation C has other learning preferences altogether. It’s growing, and we need to pay attention. This group is easily bored, restless and might rate you on Yelp.
All jokes aside, if we don’t shift the way we teach, we will lose the engagement of this growing population.
Generation C learners like video, because it’s available everywhere and they can use it to learn anything — without you. Scour the web, and you can find a video to suit just about any learning need. Smart L&D professionals and traditional educators are looking to invest in video more, especially for just-in-time learning, because they know it works:
- In Kaltura’s 2018 survey on “The State of Video in Education,” 95% of respondents identified video as an important element of digital literacy, and 92% said that it “increases student satisfaction with their learning experience.”
- According to Forrester research, employees are 75% more likely to watch a videothan to read documents, emails or web articles.
- Gartner research has found that video learning is second in popularity only to e-learning, with three out of four L&D professionals saying they use or plan to use it in their organizations.
Now that we know video is the learning modality of the future, how do we start investing in it? Here are some tips that can help, whether or not we have dollars to spend.
1. Make Curation a Habit
Anyone can be a video curator; all it takes is an interest in finding material that’s related to what you want to learn or teach. A good curator is always looking for content, even when there is not a learning plan associated with it. For some, it becomes a hobby. The best video curators are already interested in the subject matter at hand and are good at finding new and different sites to browse.
2. Chunk and Catalog Continuously
Because L&D folks are lifelong learners, chances are good that you already have some ideas for where to go and what you want to find. While it’s easy to pick the first video you find on YouTube that seems relevant, a better approach is to create a plan based on the objectives of your training.
Look at many different sources as you curate materials, and don’t be afraid to dig and do something different. Sort your findings to create your own catalog and playlist for each topic.
3. Don’t Be Afraid to DIY
Creating video yourself is not as hard as it sounds. You can easily create short videos on a smartphone or tablet. Here are some tips:
Create a quick title slide with your organization’s brand.
Interview a leader, show a process or procedure, or perform a task in a three-minute video. Be sure it includes:
- Who the person is.
- What they have to do with the video topic.
- Why they think it’s important.
- How they perform the process or procedure (if applicable).
Create a closing slide with your organization’s brand.
Import the opening and closing slide into your video app, and place your clip between them.
Add subtitles in the event that your video is watched on a device without sound or by a learner who is deaf or hard of hearing.
4. Consider Adding Searching and Curating Video to the Learning Journey
Give learners “homework” to look for something related to the content covered during the training. Be sure that they can explain how and why it is relevant.
5. Keep It Short and Sweet
I tend to keep videos under 20 minutes long. Unless the video is highly engaging, I prefer a shorter and more direct engagement, usually three to six minutes. I also usually follow the video with an engaging activity.
6. When Time Is a Challenge, Use Vendors Who Have Out-of-the-box Solutions
There are some great vendors on the market that offer tools to create professional videos. They do require a budget, so compare the time you’ll save with the money you’ll spend.
Video is a great way give learners the right story and the right information at the right time. It conveys materials in an engaging way and helps learning stick. An impactful video can ensure that everyone has a consistent learning experience and give learners the opportunity to review information again and again if needed. All they have to do is press “rewind.”