Engaging SME's for the adventure in eLearning

May 11, 2012

After a though provoking #chat2lrn on Thursday afternoon I left thinking what kinds of activities are there to engage SME's in the build process?

What do you do to engage and prepare SME's for the adventure in eLearning? Do you play a game? Is there an exercise you do?

4 Replies
Steve Flowers

I think it's mostly about alignment. Preparation and engagement strategies will depend on the SME and their availability, interest, etc..

There's an old thread where we discussed SME encounters:


Tom had a post awhile back that generated some great comments. I summarized two of these comments in the thread referenced above.


Zara Ogden

Thanks Steve.

What I am trying to find is more practical application.  I am trying to find a few ways to engage SME's and prepare them for the upcoming adventure in learning.I want to find a passive approach. From the resent chat it seems that  often our ID ego can be just as much of an issue as the SME ego.

For example:

John knows nothing about eLearning but his boss says he has to entertain you the ID... As the ID what do you do?

Sara loves learning and has a million ideas to share... As the ID what do you do?

We have all taken personality surveys and know what kind of learner or personality we are is there something like that for the SME? Has anyone every built a program training the general SME or Owner about the process and challenges?

Steve Flowers

So, some kind of self assessment that helps to align and prepare? Communications styles batteries could help but it sounds like you might want more than this. Something that provides an overview / what they should expect and something that makes the SME feel better about the process and their place in it?

We have a standard spiel and presentation pattern we use to prep some SME's. This goes over a standard process we lay out in our SOPs so it's not a secret and the doc lends some credibility. 

You might get some ideas from Dave Gray's book Gamestorming. There are some great activities for breaking through blockage and getting down to business. Most of these are for groups but I don't see any reason they couldn't be adapted.

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