About Dr Nic

We have a lot to learn from each other. My contribution focuses on learning impact.

My Focus

My client work and upcoming digital products focus on three neglected areas:

  • PREVENTION
  • "How do we build learning experiences that work from the get-go?"
  • DIAGNOSIS
  • "What's working, what's not, why (not)?"
  • PROGNOSIS
  • "What learning impact could be expect if we implement X, Y or Z?"

This evidence-based approach extends across the whole learning lifecycle — from “we’ve got a problem” to seed idea and needs analysis to the design, delivery, immediate outcomes, and long-term impact of learning — formal and informal.

My Big Why

I focus 100% on learning impact. Why?

  • ACCOUNTABILITY
  • $Learning professionals play a hugely important role—learning is as important as any business function, including marketing, finance and sales. As such, learning investments need to be insight-driven, and importantly, accountable. What difference, if any, does it make? And why? Valuing impact—a mindset, process and outcome—allows us to gauge and report the real impact learning has, not only on know-how, but on performance, people and strategic goals. What we do should and does matter!
  • UNDERSERVED
  • $The learning industry has plenty of talent in leadership and strategy, instructional design, edtech, and marketing. But relatively few of us know how to measure impact, translate emergent science into better learning, and turn data into valuable insights. While I have and offer these skills to clients, I want to go one step further. I want to build learning impact capabilities across the learning industry. In brief, training the trainers has the potential to amplify our impact.
  • OUTDATED
  • $We now know far more about learning, especially in digital environments, than we did even a few years ago. But this explosion of research across the learning sciences means it's hard, if not impossible, to keep up! Textbooks quickly go out of date, and people risk giving poor advice or designing and delivering sub-optimal learning experiences. Part of my role is to help you stay up to speed with these latest developments.

The Catalyst

My impactful learning journey started around 25 years ago in perhaps unusual circumstances. Working in the ocean, I had a promising career in the marine sciences. Despite working in “paradise”—diving for work in Bermuda, New Caledonia, Australia—all was not well. Our precious coastal ecosystems were (and still are) in dire trouble. My intervention? Science communication and education focused on behavioural change. While working for five years as a consultant, my PhD research, awarded in 2005, focused on evaluation—from needs analysis and process evaluation to outcome and impact evaluation.

Since then, I’ve worked in diverse environments—digital, hybrid, face-to-face—and across many subject domains, from leadership and data to change interventions for various organisations, including corporations, not-for-profits, entrepreneurs, and higher education.

What Now?

Having recently launched (April 2024) DISCO Analytics, myself and our team of consultants will increasingly launch a suite of research services, tools, products, digital downloads, thought pieces and approaches to help learning professionals measure, understand and increase their impact.

To keep in the loop, consider subscribing to Disco Insights, my new insights to impact agency’s newsletter. Even better, visit DISCO Analytics, the learning analytics and impact agency I set up to increase and evidence training impacts.

 

An insight-driven, impact-seeking learning experience (LX) consultant who loves to evaluate and increase the impact of learning.