Continuous Learning: The Social Give and Take of Podcasting

Continuous Learning - The social give-and-take of podcasting

When you hear the term “unintended consequences” do you assume the worst?  Many of us are natural skeptics, especially those who’ve studied economics.  But positive outcomes are just as probable.

That’s been my experience with podcasting.  I spent decades traveling for business and have long been addicted to audio learning content in all forms – including audio books, audio courses, talk-radio and now podcasts – to learn and help pass the travel time more quickly.  Music is great, but on a seven-hour drive, nothing is better than audio learning.

I knew that producing a podcast could be an effective, engaging form of continuous learning for Talented Learning followers – especially those stuck on planes, trains and automobiles.  What I didn’t expect were the unintended, social learning benefits of podcasting.

Continuous Learning: Vision vs. Reality


Early this year when I launched The Talented Learning Show, my goals were clear.  I wanted to offer learning professionals more opportunities to hear about technology topics and trends directly from industry innovators, experts and practitioners.  I wanted to create conversational content in a convenient, accessible format.  Podcasting seemed like a perfect fit and it’s working better than planned.

It’s surprising what a 30-minute deep-dive discussion will reveal when you’re talking with smart people who know how to link business with learning.  Their stories are powerful examples of what organizations can achieve with advanced learning tools and techniques and they provide a roadmap for others to follow.

We’ve recorded only 8 episodes, yet the collective insight, commitment, creativity and leadership that our guests bring to the table is impressive by any standard.  If you’re a member of our audience, I hope you’re enjoying this educational ride as much as I am!

The Surprising Lesson of Give and Take

There’s something else I did not expect:  As our listeners share episodes with others, our audience is expanding to new corners of the learning community we haven’t reached through our blog and webinars.  Many of these new listeners have their own unique take on learning and have developed their own following.  Many also have blogs and podcasts, and are asking me to join them as a guest!

Whether I’m interviewing others or they’re interviewing me, information exchange is the fabric that connects us all in communities of interest.  It’s a fundamental dimension of continuous social learning.  Give and take.

For example, recently I had the opportunity to join industry veteran, thought leader and instructional rock star Connie Malamed founder of The eLearning Coach to discuss one of my favorite topics:

“The Strategic Use of Learning Management Systems.”

Listen to the full podcast here:

We compared notes about all sorts of LMS-related topics.  For instance:


There’s actually much more.  Connie is an excellent interviewer.  She helped me unpack a ton of information in only 30 short minutes.  If you’d like a sneak peek, here’s a taste from the transcript:

“When someone is looking for an LMS, what requirements should they think about?”

My reply:  “If you look at a spreadsheet of 1001 things an LMS can do and try to determine what is or isn’t critical, you’ll end up with 992 must-haves.  Instead, start with your use case.  What kind of impact does your organization want?  Who are your learners?  What do you want them to do at every step in the process and how should they interact with the LMS?  Amazingly, if you map it out, you’re likely to identify less than 100 requirements you really need.  That gives you a much clearer focus.  And with more than 700 learning systems available, focus is key…”


Throughout her career, Connie has been underwhelmed by LMSs, so I’m not sure I converted her.  But I do think I did make an impression.  As she wrapped up our session, I had to chuckle at her closing comment:

“Honestly, I never thought I would be so fascinated with the world of learning management systems, but John has such a passion for the industry that he made it exciting.”

Thanks much for the opportunity, Connie.  Maybe you’ll be willing to join me as a guest on The Talented Learning Show sometime soon?  Give and take.  The cycle of continuous learning rolls on, one conversation at a time.

Thanks for reading!



Shiny Penny or Strategic Edge? How to Leverage Learning Content Trends


We all want to offer learning experiences that resonate with our audience.  But with so many new content options, that’s easier said than done.  Innovative formats, methods, tools and sources are rapidly changing – and they’re rewriting price/quality and build/buy rules at every turn.

So how do you make the biggest impact on customers, channel partners and others in your extended enterprise?

Join John Leh, as he helps you apply today’s top trends. You’ll learn:

  • Top 10 content advances no one can afford to ignore
  • How to determine which trends align with your business priorities
  • Tips for buy-versus-build decisions
  • Ideas for integrating new content into existing programs
  • How to evaluate the impact of a refreshed content strategy



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About John Leh (242 Articles)
John Leh is CEO and Lead Analyst at Talented Learning and the Talented Learning Center. John is a fiercely independent consultant, blogger, podcaster, speaker and educator who helps organizations select and implement learning technology strategies, primarily for extended enterprise applications. His advice is based upon more than 25+years of learning-tech industry experience, serving as a trusted LMS selection and sales adviser to hundreds of learning organizations with a total technology spend of more than $100+ million and growing. John would love to connect with you at@JohnLeh or on LinkedIn.

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  1. Does Your Business Really Need an LMS? Straight Talk with "The eLearning Coach" - Talented Learning

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