Needing a fresh idea!!!

Jul 17, 2012

I am currently redoing a course that was shot down by our communications team because it was too "corporate" to send out to our employees.  I completely agree but was not the instructional designer on this course.  I basically just made it "pretty" and built it.  In my organization, there's a lot of struggle between the e-learning designers and managers thinking they can be "instructional designers."  With that said, I am now left with this course to rebuild.  I have decided to take this project and use it as my first project in Storyline.  I need help coming up with a fresh idea on how to present the information.  Here is a little background on the course:

It is called the "Success Cycle" and basically it is the talent management life cycle of an employee: Attract, Perform, Develop and Succeed.  Currently, it's basically a glorified PowerPoint with voice over mixed with a few interactions.  It talks about the employee's role and the manager's role in this cycle.  It also discusses each phase of the cycle and how to apply it.  One of the things they want to add in are video clips of employees talking about real life experiences within each phase of the Success Cycle.  We have already captured the videos and I am trying to figure out a way to incorporate them in.  The current theme that I have for the course is kind of the look of a "Successories" poster.  

Anyone have any ideas on how to do this better?  How have you all presented similar information in the past at your companies?  Any help is GREATLY appreciated!

Thanks in advance!

10 Replies
Bruce Graham


I'm a bit brain-dead at the moment, however, it would be fun to have some sort of "indicator" that changed based on variables being reached, perhaps "graduate", "6-month review", "1-year in", "1st promotion" etc.

Perhaps Phil "The God of Variables and Conditions" Mayor will have some ideas around this - he usually does


Josh Webb

Hi Elizabeth,

Who is the primary audience? Is it for employees to take hold of their progress through the cycle or managers to facilitate the cycle? Or is it both? This would greatly impact my decision on a "theme."

Without knowing exactly what the "too corporate" feel was, I may not be offering you much but here's a couple immediate thoughts:

  • A "movie theater" feel where learners click on "trailers" to learn about different employees' experiences. You could even a do a play on "movie ratings" where the manager is encouraged to view certain material and the employee likewise (i.e. rated "M" for manager and "E" for employee)
  • A game-based progression where the learner proceeds through the different phases of the cycle by viewing content and completing interactions/quizzes. This could be accompanied by a visual representation of the cycle that remains on the screen throughout the course.

I hope this helps!


Rev Michelle

Maybe for the "Attract" section of your presentation you can add  a few of the illustrated people that come with storyline, have them click on the person that best represents them.  Have the character receive a "Welcome" into the company and follow the character through the "Attract, Perform, Develop and Succeed" process. 


Maybe you could have photos of different places in your office/building ( walking into the building, H.R., Breakroom etc) and add illustrated people to that. You could then add your videos that go with the area that they are in.

Great Feature:

I love the "try steps" feature. You click the "record screen" button and it will record your desktop. Once it is finished you can "insert as step by step slides" then "try mode steps". When you click on something while recording, It automatically creates hotspot.  Once you put the recording in the project  the user can click and follow what you did.  It is extremely interactive.  I'm not sure how you could incorporate that into your presentation (show were to get help on the company's website???), but I really love it for step by step demos.

I hope it helps.  As you can see I prefer to read the posts, rather than post myself.  

Elizabeth Polak

The audience is supposed to be both managers and employees.  The reason for the revamp is not only the too "corporate driven" consensus but also they included way too much stuff on Talent Management and why it's important.  It's supposed to just be an overview of the Success Cycle at an employee/manager level.  So, I am taking out all of the "HR Talent Management speak" and trying to make it important/interesting for the general employee.  

Josh - I like the movie theater idea!  

Leisa  Bulow

Hi Elizabeth,

There are some great downloads available from this site also - one I think could work well for this one for you is the Magazine Layout. You could have certain areas where you click on links in the magazine page to view the videos. It would also only require a succinct amout of text.

There's another template on the site with four business "sections", which you could update to reflect the stages of the cycle.

Maybe you could set it up like a current affairs-type television interview, using a silhouette as the interviewee, and including the videos to demonstrate points during the stages of the cycle. It could be an "expose" on what to expect at the firm.

Rebecca Hay


"Maybe you could set it up like a current affairs-type television interview, using a silhouette as the interviewee, and including the videos to demonstrate points during the stages of the cycle. It could be an "expose" on what to expect at the firm."

I love this idea! I may use this idea for an HR course for new employees.

Love the sharing of ideas that we have here.

Belen Casado

Hi Elizabeth,

I hope I can help you with this.

I see it with a character telling that he/she has gone through the cycle and has done it successfully.

He remembers when he was at the Attract phase, and also remembers one of his/her co-workers talking. Then, in a thought-cloud or similar, the video of this part can appear. Then, this character goes on with his/her story and shows next video, etc.

I also see that it's important, if you decide to have a character, that represents the company (age, gender... even name), so people can feel identificated with it.

I hope it helps,

I agree with @Rebecca: lots of very good ideas here!

Todd Thornton


From your profile, it looks like you are in the food industry. I've always liked the idea of these life cycle style programs either:

1) Including analogies/themes to company products life cycle of crops/plants/etc

2) For broader reach, analogies to human life cycle in general. You mentioned trying to make it interesting for everyone so if you can compare a particular phase to say (teenagers trying to become independent) it's more relateable.

In terms of graphics you could use plant growth/something similar as the overall theme for sections of the course. Here's a good example of an infographic using leaves on a tree for specific ideas. Of course with something like this you can use roots to denote base skills that are needed to grow strong, etc. The reason I like this representation is that just by adding apples, it gives you more options like using them as the key bullet points or even using them as the ultimate outcomes.


El Burgaluva

Hi, Elizabeth

My first question is: What are the intended outcomes for this course?

The answer to that will obviously affect the learning design.

As for ideas on the "frame"/presentation... reflecting on the procedural/formulaic approach of a talent mgmt cycle (i.e. there are various "fixed" elements that are applicable in numerous ways in response to individual needs), I thought of The Hero's Journey.

Without being cutesy or hokey, you could use this plotline to focus on someone at the same current level (in the organisation) as the target learners and his/her manager as they negotiate the cycle together (with a goal of getting the employee to a level in the hierarchy to which Mgmt would like learners to aspire).

The reason I thought of this classic plotline is that there are parallels with Talent Mgmt insofar as there is adversity, there are setbacks, etc. but, ultimately, by putting in the hard graft (oh, and being able to dodge bullets, feature in a transformative montage sequence and (optionally) make corny wisecracks), the plight of good prevails.

To do this, you could map out a "quest" plot (kind of along the lines of this SMS Treasure Storyline demo) and then "dress it up" in business clothes, so to speak (perhaps a little like the Broken Co-worker demo).

Learners could get involved on both sides (i.e. the employee's side and the manager's side) to offer advice and "unlock" key info -- kind of video game style.

Riffing on an idea from above, you could keep score using variables in the background (see the US State Capitals demo) and change the state of time-markers (equivalent to "stages" or "levels" in a video game") as the score increases -- by completing various interactions, choosing quiz options correctly, etc.

Hope that helps,


This discussion is closed. You can start a new discussion or contact Articulate Support.