LEARN MORE ABOUT NEW APPROACHES AND TECHNIQUES FOR LEARNING AND DEVELOPMENT

TRAINING AND DEVELOPMENT FOR 15 YEARS

From educational videos into learning materials

Didactica Educational Services Ltd was founded in 1988. Its line of business has all the time been training, consulting, study materials and development of learning technology. Early 1990s the company had three focus areas: 1) development of learning technology, 2) trainingn and consulting, and 3) producing study material for english language. One example of that was the voice-slide material ”Amherst Police Station”, designed and produced by Didactica Consulting.

From leadership training into strategic consulting

In late 1990s the company concentrated in leadership training, team development, and facilitating strategic change programs with various organizations cooperating with Yritysvalmennus/VIA Group. The focus in consulting was designing and facilitating change programs, facilitating leadership development programs, and working with organizations in order to develop organizational culture, values and ethical climate. At that time the research and development to create of own instruments and frameworks began.

From research into own instruments, frameworks, and technologies

In this millenium the focus of the company has shifted from active consulting into the development of different instruments, framewoeks and technologies to help training and consulting. These include different individual and organizational assessments, auditions, and profiles. An essential element of this work has been intensive own research and development, the PhD work of the founder Jukka Alava, and wide international cooperation.

All the instruments are based on fully automated computer programs that process the various profiles and reports. Some of the techniques are also internet-based, for example team development program which uses the Learning & Innovation individual profile, and The Innovation Scorecard, which is an interactive training program to foster innovation.

RESEARCH, EXPERIENCE, AND DATA BANKS

All the instruments are based on research, have great validity, and are tested in many organizations. For example the Learning & Innovation profile, which assesses individual way to think and process information is based on the data of 7000 people.

Are there any differences among different tools and instruments ?

Worldwide, there are thousand of different instruments, tests, and assessments that can be used in describing and analyzing human action and behavior. Why is Learning & Innovation any different? Are the various techniques different in the first place? We often ask these questions because the use of different tests and assessments ahas increased rapidly. They are used in recruiting and in training. Time to time you can also read critical articles about their use. When evaluating different methods, it is of great importance to ask, on what theoretical basis the methods is based, how it is tested, and what is the use of using it. Test and assessments are not to be used for the sake of testing. All methods and analyses used need to have a solid foundation, and the user must be able to clearly explain why it is used.

The Strategic Learning Cycle and The Learning & Innovation Profile are based three solid foundations: 1) extencive research and widely used theoretical background, 2) using the frameworks in parctice makes really adiffecence, 3) the applications are based on several years of experience and the profile is based on a data banck of several thousand individuals worldwide.

DIFERENT NEEDS – DIFFERENT METHODS AND INSTRUMENTS

The most often made mistake by consultants – the real besetting sin – has making offers of what he/she knows best, not what the customer needs. Therefore, the key in consulting is to make in each case a detailed assessment of the needs of the customer and after that make a plan for the use of instruments and frameworks. During the years in consulting, all our instruments have been developed according to the needs of customers in specific programs.

In the individual level, emphasis is interpersonal and leadership skills. In these are there are two key issues. First, to understand different behavior, and second, to develop our own behavior. It is often said the quality of out interpersonal interaction depends on our ”open area”, which means the area of behaviors, feelings, and actions that are know both to me and others.

The previous is a brief summary of how the instruments and techniques have been developed in time to meet specific customer needs. Most instruments include work-books, study materials and seminar hand-outs. All instruments and materials are available also in English.

FOCUS IN LEADERSHIP

Traditionally the effort and action in development is divided in to areas. We talk about management – the “hard” side, and leadership – the “soft” side. Management includes strategies, processes, structures, economics, and procedures. Leadership includes, interaction, leading, culture, values, and ethics.

It is also said that management is something you do in the office by your desk, and leadership is something you do with people in interaction.

Drawing from dozens of training and change programs, we can conclude that the success and sustainability of these programs depend on the development of the leadership side. Naturally, we need the strategies, but they are in vein, if the respected organizational behaviors do not develop accordingly.

For these reasons, the focus in product and technology development in Didactica Consulting has been in the leadership side of development.

INSTRUMENTS AND TECHNOLOGIES

  • Learning & Innovation; individual and team profile
  • Strategic Learning Cycle; a framework to interpret and foster organizational change
  • The Leader- leadership development profile and work-book
  • Profile of internal quality
  • Profile of organizational culture
  • Profile of motivating working community
  • Profile of ethical climate; values’ analyses and ethical code
  • Learning Audit™ ; developing learning organization
  • Innovation Scorecard (InSco); to develop individual and organizational innovation (in cooperation with Innovative Business ).

To be used in seminar settings

  • Individual values’ analyses
  • Analyses of emotions at the workplace

REFERENCES

Didactica Consulting has been working in many indistries, but focus has been in high technology companies, professional knowledge organizations, the military, universities, educational organizations, social and health care organizations, and associations.

Below is an exemplary list of organizations who have been consulting clients or used development instruments and technologies on a license basis.

ABB
Elcotec
Itä-Savo
M-Real
Metsäliitto
Vaisala
Yomi

Clark Manufacturing, USA
Lexmark , USA

City of Jyväskylä
St Petersburg Chamber of Commerce

Finnish Air Force/central command
Air Force Materiel Command
Defence Staff
Air Force C3 Materiel Command

Univeristy of Helsinki
University of Kuopio
University of Turku
University of Kentucky , USA

Department of Education in Island
Department of Education in Finland
Department of Education in Estonia
Department of Education in Denmark

Ressun sixth form college
Päijät-Häme vocational scool
Turun vocational school

ESHA – European Secondary Head’s Association

Health care federation of Central Fibland
Military hospital Tilkka
Kuopio university hospital
Health care federation of Northern Carelia

Finnish dental company
Finnish dental association
Finnish dentists

Akava ry
Union of professional engineers in Finland
Federation of Social Workers in Finland
Federation of private driving schools in Finland
World Federation of Social Workers

ADHD- liitto ry
Aivohalvaus- ja dysfasialiitto ry
Invalidiliitto ry
Suomen Parkinson- liitto ry

License use

Teacher training polytechnic
Johtamistaidon opisto - JTO
University of Jyväskylä
Reijo Mattila Oy
SynerChange Oy
Triangle Associates, USA
Vaisala Oyj
Vierumäki
Yritysvalmennus Oy

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