_20161205_230207For regular followers you will know that I love Twitter. I get immense learning, connection and interest from that little blue bird. One hashtag which always makes me smile is #WinningAtLife, celebrating the little things in life which keep us moving forward. This past week I have had several #WinningAtLife moments, such as getting the Christmas tree to stand up straight, finding the last parking space, jumping on the train just before the doors closed, and finalising plans for December’s #LnDcowork. These moments are the survival smiles which cheer up a grey day, they are the glue between people, they are what colleagues regularly need to feel and experience at work. Winning at life cannot just happen in our private lives.

My biggest work #WinningAtLife smile in the past week came at the Learning Technologies Awards #LT16Awards when CIPD & Avado won Silver for ‘Best online distance learning programme’. It was a great moment which summed up two years in the making. I am so proud to be connected to the project which has helped demonstrate the changes the Institute is bringing in to pull our profession into the 21st Century. It is not an easy job, but truly the CIPD is now #WinningAtLife.

I was brought in as an external voice to work on the team writing and delivering the brand new Level 5 L&D Qualification. It was the first ever digital qualification programme the CIPD had offered. We produced quality bitesize assets, which sat within a blended learning framework, engaging students in forums, live online classes, research reading, assessments, and more. I worked with inspirational people in stimulating, rigorous discussion, and we occasionally disagreed which was good, but as we always focused on the journey of the learner, we were guided to the right track. After months of prep, we launched the programme in July 2015. The numbers are quite spectacular in terms of uptake, completion rates and engagement. The forums were a delight to engage in, the live online classes even more so. The students have all made the programme what it has become. The whole experience has been enlightening and exciting; a journey of innovation, collaboration, co-creation, research, industry experts, live online classes, student ideas, feedback, fun, and now an award.

I love working with the team at CIPD; Giorgia Gamba, Andy Lancaster, and David Hayden. Plus the Avado team have been a pleasure too; I must give special mention to Leslie Mauro who makes teaching a live class an absolute dream with her proactive attention to detail. All in all it’s the Avado / CIPD dream team; indeed we can now call ourselves an award winning dream team. It feels weird saying that. Wow, what an immense couple of years. Thank you all for helping me to be #WinningAtLife, and long may it continue.