By Elizabeth Ziemba, President, Medical Tourism Training, Inc.
How are you using on-line learning to improve your skills and those of your staff?
Keep an Open Mind
All of us learned by going to school and sitting in classrooms with a teacher and fellow students. The day was structured with certain time periods dedicated to certain subjects. Or lunch. Interaction with teachers and students added to the quality of the learning process. Sound familiar?
Technological changes allow relevant content to be delivered to our homes and offices. On-line learning is not about learning the way we did in school. It is about quality assurance, process and procedure, knowledge and certification. It is a tool to help individuals and organizations involved in international health travel acquire what they need to succeed in an increasingly competitive global market.
With busy schedules and demands to update or acquire new skills and education, on-line learning offers the flexibility, convenience, affordability, and quality that are designed for hard-working professionals. Budget-savvy employers are using value-priced on-line training to supplement formal study or on-site training. Employees access on-line courses on the job or at home to comply with certification requirements, refresh learning, or acquire new information.
Integrating On-Line Learning into Busy Schedules
What can individuals and employers do to maximize their investment of time and money in e-learning solutions to turn online courses into successful organizations with skilled employees?
Set goals. Whether you are registered for an on-line course yourself or arranged by your employer, establish realistic goals to successfully complete the course so that you can retain important information and apply the skills and knowledge you have acquired. Check the “running time” of the course – this is the amount of time that it will take to listen to all the course content without stopping. Estimate how much time it will take you to listen to the course materials, re-read slides or listen to the content again, complete quizzes, and any other feature that the course offers. This total will help you plan how much time you will need to complete the course so that you can plan your time accordingly.
Tip for employers. When purchasing on-line training for employees, help them to establish realistic goals both individually and collectively with a start date and anticipated completion date. Support and facilitate their investment of your money and their time in a successful venture by articulating your expectations and exploring theirs. Be clear from the start that you value them as employees which is why you are investing in improving their skills and knowledge.
Specify times on your calendar to devote to on- line study. What is the best time of the day for you to engage in learning? Are you a morning person or do you prefer late night quiet? Scheduling time to study and keeping to that schedule is an excellent way to maximize learning. Pace yourself by allowing enough time to absorb the material.
Tip for employers. If you want your employees to engage in on-line learning, give them the time to do and do it well. Like most things, e-learning takes time to do and to do well. Instead of adding on-line study as one more thing to do during their busy days, help your employees to succeed by giving them time for on-line study.
Talk about what you are learning. Just like keeping to an exercise program or diet, you are more likely to maintain good study habits if you tell people – co-workers, family, friends – what you are doing. Ask someone to talk to you about what you are learning. Conversation is a great way to reinforce what you are learning. If a group of individuals are taking the same on-line course, form a study group to talk about what you are learning and how it applies to your job and organization.
Tip for employers. If providing training for one person or an entire department, provide opportunities for staff to interact with other students as well as staff by arranging lunch time talks, formal presentations, brainstorming sessions, or other ways for the people getting the training to share what they are learning and to apply that knowledge to the work place.
Supplement your learning. Want to know even more about a particular subject and how it relates to your work or interests? Spend some time researching and reading more. Our experts can suggest articles and book to further your learning so contact us to advice about more in-depth learning.
Tip for employers. A great team building tool is to purchase a book for members of your organization, department or team and devote time to discussing the material and how it relates to your mission and goals. Encourage the exchange of ideas and give your e-learners the opportunity to shine with their new knowledge.
Turn the knowledge into action. Knowledge is fun but converting theory into action is even better. Test your own ideas and see how they work or if further refinement is needed. Medical tourism brings together people from different cultures and backgrounds with different needs and personalities. What works for one person will need a different approach with another. Experiment with what you are learning and reap the rewards of the time you have invested.
Tip for employers. Ask the people who are participating in the on-line training to offer suggestions for ways to improve your organization. Then implement new methods and approaches to doing business. You will send the message that you value training and the benefits that the employees receive. It will encourage e-learners to take training seriously – especially when they see their ideas turn into action.
Celebrate success. Reward yourself for your success! Enjoy the satisfaction of having accomplished the goals you set for yourself before you began the program of on-line study. At the successful conclusion of our courses, you can print a personalized “Certificate of Completion”. Print and display the certificate as proof of your accomplishment. When you have turned your ideas into action and those actions result in a business success, celebrate that too!
Tip for employers. When e-learning generates a suggestion from one or more members of staff and that suggestion is a success, reward the people who are improving your organization. The reward can take many shapes including public recognition at a meeting or in a newsletter, a gift certificate or bonus, or other ways that excellence is acknowledged.
Contact the course provider for assistance. The e-learning format may take some getting used to so contact the provider for help. Not sure how to navigate the features of the course? Check out the “Help” section or “Frequently Asked Questions” (FAQs). If you do not understand something – instructions about accessing the course materials, course features, or specific contact – then contact the provider with your questions. Medical Tourism Training is happy to respond to questions from our e-learners as well as receive feedback about our courses.
These basic tips will help you become comfortable with the on-line learning format while maximizing the return on your investment of time and money. E-learning is a valuable tool to improve your knowledge and skills in the medical tourism sector engaging you at your convenience whether at home or the office. By integrating on- lining learning as part of the training services provided to employees, savvy employers can foster communication and involve employees in growing a stronger, smarter organization.
About Medical Tourism Training, Inc.
Medical Tourism Training, Inc. is a dynamic company offering on-line courses as well as on-site training and consulting services to the individuals and organizations involved in the rapidly growing international health travel sector. With a focus on business skills and training especially those involving the patient/customer experience, the company is the first to market affordable, convenient, and easy to use e-Learning solutions that are oriented to working professionals. By collaborating with experts in the fields of medical tourism, health care, business, hospitality, and law, Medical Tourism Training is ready to deliver high quality on-site training and consulting services designed to create measurable change for its clients
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