Your Employees' Perception is Their Reality

Tuesday July 11th, 2017 at 1:25pm
Written by Kevin Watson - Director of Business Development

Have you ever hit send on an email and immediately wished you could retrieve it, for fear that the recipient would misconstrue your actual intent? In a world where the words we use represent a mere 7% of communication effectiveness, this happens all the time.

Humor me for a minute, and read the following sentence six consecutive times, each time putting the emphasis on the word in BOLD.

I DIDN’T SAY YOU WERE PRETTY
I DIDN’T SAY YOU WERE PRETTY
I DIDN’T SAY YOU WERE PRETTY
I DIDN’T SAY YOU WERE PRETTY
I DIDN’T SAY YOU WERE PRETTY
I DIDN’T SAY YOU WERE PRETTY

How is it possible that a simple, six-word sentence can have six dramatically different meanings/interpretations? Regardless of our intended meaning, the recipient’s perception becomes their reality.

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Visualizing Your Recruiting and Succession Plans

Wednesday May 24th, 2017 at 9:00pm
Written by Casey White - Director of Marketing

I wasn’t expecting to be inspired by a field hockey office display, but that’s what happened recently during my visit to a local university. Are you wondering how recruiting and succession planning for your company could possibly relate to a University field hockey program?

Picture this: a striking, larger-than-life visual of a long-range “staffing” plan, highlighting each year from now until 2020, showing field positions, names of current players and potential recruits. It was color-coded and created to help coaches identify, by position, the talent needed to stay competitive and ultimately work toward their goal of building a championship team. It was obvious: they clearly understood they needed talented people to achieve that goal and all the particulars were captured in vivid detail.

That display got me thinking, “How many companies understand what their talent needs look like?” It made me realize that capturing the right kind of data, and making that data come to life visually, is crucial in setting the best goals and vision for the future. How close is your organization to understanding what your talent needs look like – today … in 3 years … in 10 years …?

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Why Your Company Should Invest in Career Sculpting

Monday April 24th, 2017 at 10:00am
Written by Arlene DeSantis Jones - Chief Talent Officer

Many companies today face the ongoing challenge of how to retain good talent. The difference between EDSI and other companies facing this challenge is our innovative Career Sculpting program. It has enabled us to retain great employees and ultimately assist in reducing turnover.

The idea for Career Sculpting came to me about 15 years ago after reading an article on retention in the Harvard Business Review. I envisioned creating a way to get to know employees better and understand them on a more personal level; not just what their work positions dictated. Brainstorming and strategy meetings ensued where colleagues and I developed the process we know and utilize at EDSI called Career Sculpting.

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Online, Hybrid, Blended and Flipped Instruction: What’s the Difference?

Wednesday October 26th, 2016 at 7:32am
Written by Kimberly Glenn - Director

In today’s world we are fortunate to have a variety of instructional delivery methods at our fingertips. Technology, being the ever-changing beast that it is, has afforded us the wonderful opportunity to explore professional development and educational initiatives that can replace, enhance, or supplement in-person or classroom instruction. Having such wonderful technology available has helped those of us in education address the concern of “lack of time.”

I cannot tell you how many times I am asked to deliver what should be a 5-day training program in only 2 days! Just like educators across the nation, I am being asked to constantly meet the demands of higher expectations, larger class sizes, and reduced instructional time for a group of learners whose knowledge base and experiences vary dramatically. What is an educator supposed to do?

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Education and Workforce Development Partnerships

Monday October 3rd, 2016 at 10:00am
Written by Ed Quintavalle - Senior Consultant

There’s been a national call-to-action for two-year community colleges and career and technical high schools. Ultimately, educators are responsible for meeting the demand for skills in the global economy.

  1. There is consensus that the foundational academic knowledge needed for postsecondary education and for careers is virtually the same, with growing recognition that academic skills, employability and technical knowledge and skills are essential as well.
  2. We’re seeing widespread agreement that lifelong learning and ‘learning how to learn’ are key drivers of success in college, careers and civic life.
  3. Research shows collaborative efforts in states, districts and communities to strengthen their collective capacity to deliver results that matter.

The plan is for greater student success. It needs to be bolder and broader – “cradle-to-career” strategies – comprehensive, data-driven plans that begin early on and focus on improving measurable progress to career readiness. This new formula shows the most promise for success. Follow-up on the student’s outcome is also important to obtain the metrics to grow this philosophy.

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3 Takeaways from Managing Thought by Mary Lore

Wednesday September 7th, 2016 at 2:33pm
Written by Sarah Strawcutter - Customer Service Representative

Let’s be honest, work, no matter what industry, can be stressful. A question I ask on daily a daily basis is, how do we cope with the stress in a healthy way? Managing Thought by Mary Lore has an interesting perspective on how to manage yourself. Think of it this way, you need to learn how to manage yourself before you can learn to manage others. Sound familiar? It should because at EDSI, we have our daily ways: Show up, Smile, and Support. A part of Smile is “I am self-aware” which means that you know your strengths and weaknesses and you can recognize them in others. If you can understand how your body deals with stress, you are in a sense self-aware.

Here are the top 3 things I took away from Managing Thought:

1. To manage your thoughts, you must live in the moment and focus

It’s so easy to focus on the future. “I have to have these files done by Friday.” “Thursday is a workshop I want to attend but I have to do an application.” When you find yourself thinking about the future or even the past, pause, take some deep breaths, and think “what can I do right now?” When doing this, you open up your mind and release any extra stress that may be manifesting. It allows you to be inspired and as a result inspire those you serve.

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Workforce Development in the Public Transportation Industry

Wednesday July 13th, 2016 at 12:10pm
Written by Ken Mall - Managing Director

Every day millions of people travel from one place to another using buses, trains, subways, ferries or other forms of public transportation. The larger the city or urban area, the more likely that public transportation is a major driver of the economy and the primary way for a significant portion of the population to get to jobs. Most people don’t realize the agencies that run public transit organizations are in desperate need of new workers to operate and maintain the current transit systems and build new systems to meet the growing demand for transportation options.

Over the next decade, it is estimated that more than 1 million workers will be needed just to replace the workers who retire. The transit industry is also experiencing a technological evolution. Buses and rail cars are able to troubleshoot themselves and send messages to technicians to let them know about potential problems. Computers are now the primary tool in a mechanic’s tool box.

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COABE 2016 - Reflections from an Adult Education Professional Developer

Wednesday June 29th, 2016 at 8:18am
Written by Kimberly Glenn - Director

This is my fourth year attending the yearly conference run by The Commission on Adult Basic Education and every year my involvement has grown. My first year I was just an attendee, but the next year I presented once, last year I presented twice, and this year I presented a total of four times! The conference reflected the changes and needs of the Adult Education community and it was amazing to see the growth in adult education during this time.

Major themes this year were transitions and career pathways. With the WIOA legislation this idea of preparing students for their next step has become extremely important. Workshop after workshop addressed various aspects of contextualized instruction, career counseling, transitions and career pathways. It was amazing to not only see how eager adult education professionals are about the change, but the vast differences that exist in how the implementation is occurring. There are many different approaches based on population, geography, integrated service options and program structure. I was inspired and motivated by the enthusiasm of the professionals who attended my session “Building Bigger and Better Career Counseling Programs in Adult Education,” and I am so happy that they left the workshop with concrete steps to assist them in implementing strategies for success.

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Addressing the Skill Shortage

Thursday June 16th, 2016 at 8:30am
Written by Kevin Watson - Director of Business Development

My wife and I are currently in full-on nesting mode as we prepare for the arrival of our second child. Throughout this nesting process, I have had the chance to reflect on the twenty months that have passed since our first son, Alexander, was born.

If I am being honest with myself, I was terribly inefficient at so many things during those first few months after our son was born. Everything from changing a diaper, to installing a car seat, to setting up and breaking down a pack-and-play took WAY longer than it does today. So what changed? Practice, practice, practice.

Luckily for me (and probably 95% of new parents), you don’t have to pass an interview or a test to get the job.

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Five Resources for Resume Success

Thursday May 5th, 2016 at 9:25am
Written by Carlo Gonzalez - Lead Facilitator

Sometimes, when I’ve tried 10 times to re-word a sentence in a resume, or I sit down with a customer who has a less-than-ideal work history, the opening lines from the famous Beatles’ song come to mind:

“Help, I need somebody
Help, not just anybody
Help, you know I need someone
Help

In the course of writing a resume or speaking with customers, we might encounter any number of problems that can cause great difficulty. In order to provide the best and most effective resume advice to customers, as well as produce great results, we should seek help from all available resources. These can come in the form of people, books, websites…anything that gives us advice and helps us to break the resume stalemate.

I store my resources in my “tool box,” and I can fix most resume problems by reaching in and pulling out something I can use.

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Tips for Building Solid Relationships, from the Wand of the Fairy Job Mother

Wednesday April 27th, 2016 at 8:01am
Written by Kathleen Niedermayer - Job Developer

“Rapport is the ability to enter someone else’s world, to make him feel that you understand him, that you have a strong common bond.” - Tony Robbins, Author and Motivational Speaker

Building relationships with another person is all about connecting with him or her and creating a sense of trust and understanding. According to some research, we have only 7 seconds to make a good first impression! It is absolutely essential for us to build solid connections with our clients, and this relationship building starts the first time we meet.

When I began my career as a Job Developer with EDSI, I would conduct an initial interview with clients. I would ask questions about clients’ living situation, their children and partners, the kinds of jobs they had in the past and what they wanted to accomplish. The interview gave me some important facts, but I realized something was missing. I wanted to go a bit deeper, I needed to better understand their passions, hopes and dreams when it came to finding, obtaining and keeping a job.

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How Webb's Depth of Knowledge Took Our Training to the Next Level

Wednesday April 20th, 2016 at 8:02am
Written by Kimberly Glenn - Director

For those of us formally trained in education or instructional design, “Bloom’s Taxonomy” is pretty familiar. This framework was introduced back in 1956 and was integral in guiding educators and instructional designers in the creation of learning objectives. Revised many times over the years, this framework consists of three domains and 5 levels within each domain.

Citation: http://educationaltaxonomy.weebly.com/home/may-02nd-20141

For years, this framework has guided instructors and educators as they design lessons and create learning objectives intended to pull learners through, to higher levels of learning. In my role as a Director and Instructional Designer, this framework had been a staple for me for many years. However, about 7 or so years ago, I was introduced to a new model, one created by Norman Webb. This model can be correlated to Bloom's Taxonomy, but focuses more on what is called the "cognitive demand" of a task.

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Career Sculpting

Wednesday November 18th, 2015 at 1:36pm
Written by Beth Seraydarian - Talent Development Specialist

Have you ever left a conversation with someone and thought, “she doesn’t get me?” Or, perhaps you have a customer you’ve tried to identify with in order to have more productive conversations. This was the situation Adria Strausbaugh found herself in when she was initially referred to Career Sculpting. Adria was, and still is today, a manager who we are interested in developing and retaining. Before we read more about Adria’s story, let’s take a closer look at Career Sculpting, one of EDSI’s talent development programs. 

Career Sculpting helps EDSI develop the capabilities of current and future leaders. Two of the intended results of the program are increased engagement and retention of our team members.  

Career Sculpting provides team members with an opportunity to:

  • Connect with what drives and motivates them 
  • Change their perspectives through individual attention and learning
  • Focus on the future 
 

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Science, Writing and Cross-Curricular Instruction in Adult Education

Sunday November 15th, 2015 at 1:30pm
Written by Kimberly Glenn - Director

This fall, I had the opportunity to deliver a series of Fall Institutes on Science and GED Writing Rubrics to Georgia adult education professionals. The two-day training was delivered on four separate occasions across the state. Over 100 professionals attended!  

Day one focused on five key science topics that are high emphasis areas on high school equivalency assessments. Ecosystems, Heredity, Cells, Solutions and Newton’s Laws of Motion were explored. I had the wonderful opportunity to model each lesson and facilitate activities the teachers could use in their classrooms. Each lesson began with the building of academic vocabulary using a modified Frayer Model. This academic vocabulary graphic organizer allowed the teachers to play the role of the student and investigate the definition of the word, how it is used in a sentence, pictures or examples of the word and applicable synonyms and antonyms. This produced an entire classroom of word walls for each lesson and was such a joy to see.   



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Reflections from a Professional Developer in Adult Education

Wednesday September 16th, 2015 at 7:19am

Written by Kim Harris - Director with EDSI

kharris@edsisolutions.com

 

Perhaps my favorite part of my job is traveling the nation, visiting other states, attending conferences and delivering presentations. This past year I was fortunate enough to present at a number of conferences for Adult Education, from state conferences in Indiana, Pennsylvania, Mississippi and Georgia to the national Commission on Adult Basic Education (COABE) conference in Denver, CO. I had such an amazing time! Of course there is something incredibly powerful about sharing knowledge and motivating fellow educators to try new things and grow as professionals, but I truly think I learn more from them than they learn from me!

These conferences allow me to hear the needs of adult education professionals from across the country and reflect on how they impact my choices as a professional developer. To really impact the students, we as professional developers must listen to what our educators need and provide engaging and relevant professional development that sets them up for successful transfer of knowledge into the classroom. Now, more than ever, adult education professionals need to prepare our students for not only obtaining a high school equivalency, but also for their next steps —whatever they might be! Encouraging and preparing our students for college, careers, technical school, etc., is now a critical component in the field of adult education. I am excited to integrate all of the information I learned from the hundreds of teachers I met over the past year to design and deliver professional development opportunities that help both teachers and students. Thank you so much to all of the teachers I have interacted with for the wonderful opportunities to learn and grow with you!

Click here to learn more about our Adult Education Program Optimization Services.

Founded in 1979, EDSI is a national leader in workforce development, customized training and consulting.

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At EDSI, their goal when they punch that clock in the morning is to help somebody succeed. William Clairborne - Philadelphia NCP Program Participant

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