I had a meeting at a big four accountancy recently in Paris and, while waiting for my meeting, spotted that the company had set up a large digital learning space in the lobby with a catchy name: digit’hall. Intrigued, I went over a tad idly to check it out.

No one from the digit’hall team came up to me to talk to me, so I was left to my own devices (so to speak). On a high table, they had on display a number of gadgets, with the idea of a show & tell. One of these digital gadgets particularly caught my eye as it was an armband to help make presentations. The item was called Myo Connect.

Something that also caught my attention was the informality of the messaging on the showcard behind the Myo Connect gadget. Using the tutoiement (the informal you), the wording in French tells me to discover how to present my slide deck as never! With guaranteed effets. And then, in English, “Ask one of us.” My only regret is that I didn’t manage to ask them about it. Instead, I took the photo and went to check it out. Maybe it would be interesting for me for my presentations? The irony of wording “as never” was not lost on me.

Staying up-to-date is hard

Imagine my face when I came across this:

Not only had the company “Thalmic Labs” (on the box) been changed to “North”, the Myo Connect product had been discontinued over a year ago. My goodness. When your digital learning experience is showing items that are no longer in circulation, you have to worry about how useful is any of their information, no? Hardly a route to genuine digital transformation!

I willingly admit that I had never come across this gadget before. It’s impossible to be up-to-date on everything. Frequently, I know that, for this blog, I have to verify if what I’m writing about is current. It really helps when you have a network of people who are willing to help out or cover your back when they spot an error. For this digit’hall team that is supposed to encourage the employees of the accountancy to “Solve, Learn & Discover”, they clearly need some allies to keep pushing and getting them more current. I have to believe the Myo Connect item has been on that bench collecting dust or, worse, provoking deception (as for me), for well over a year. If they were serious about learning to be digital at this company, they should be rotating the gadgets on a regular basis to show some up-to-date items. I’m guessing that they don’t have the budget, which would be another doubly revealing problem.

Staying relevant is harder

You can’t just put an item on a bench and hope that people will learn to be more digital by osmosis. As with any learning, the how (context and manner in which) you learn is important. Especially when it comes to digital, creating an experience that makes the learner try it out is very useful. In this case, they should have had the armband set up with a presentation to try it out. Let the user discover it through play.

Finding tools that SOLVE your problems is a great starting point, but it seems to presume in this case that the slide decks are boring in the first place. Learn by discovery is a great idea in principle, but you’d better make the experience relevant to the learner/user. In this case, the more relevant idea is to review how they present, rather than the bright shiny object that has clearly lost its lustre. My advice: make your presentations better, first. Anyway, we now know that the armband is unavailable!

P.S. I found that North has pivotted to connected glasses that are intriguing (and in the newest update in summer 2020, I saw that they were purchased by Google). Maybe the digit’hall should connect with their North and update their show&tell!

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