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ASTD Chapter Newsletter
August 2012 Issue
President's Message

The sun’s out! July 4th has finally passed, which for us in the Pacific Northwest means we can don our sunglasses, put on our shorts, and display our pale white skin for a few weeks. This is also a great time for family outings, rest and relaxation, hiking, fishing and many more fun outdoor activities.

Since we are into summer, days are a little longer. This allows me to take a stroll down by the water and take some time to reflect and plan for the future. One of my plans is the fall ASTD conference and pre-conference workshop! For those of you that missed the exciting ASTD International Conference in Denver, this is our Puget Sound version of an ASTD conference on a smaller and more focused scale.

While the international conference had over 8,000 attendees and you get lost in the crowd, we are shooting for a few hundred people, where you are sure to be able to network, gain insights in breakout sessions, and really be able to dig into some learning.

We have great sponsors, too! Intrepid Learning, with a great presence in the Northwest, is a Premier Sponsor and will be present at the conference. Intrepid Learning is an award-winning provider of corporate learning services and enterprise learning technology, designed to accelerate productivity and growth for business.

We also have Tom Kuhlmann, who is conducting a pre-conference workshop on Rapid E-Learning Workshop – Building Engaging and Interactive E-Learning!

These are just a couple of things going on at the conference! Click here for more information and to register: ASTDps Conference

Remember to plan ahead for this event. We also have monthly programs and CPLP preparation meetings, as well as Special Interest Groups happening each month.

I have much to plan for myself! I will need to take many walks this summer to get all of my family time in, eat some hot dogs , (Note: hot dogs are bad for you) maybe go to a ball game, and then plan for??   more training events than I can possibly attend! I hope you too will plan for an exciting fall and join us at some of our events!

Have a sunny summer!

Darren Nerland
ASTD Puget Sound President

Join us at our Upcoming ASTD Puget Sound Conference!

Are you ready to “Ignite Your Mojo?” Register now for the ASTD Puget Sound 2012 Workplace Learning Conference, Friday, October 5, 2012 in Renton, Washington

This one-day conference will feature an exciting line-up of speakers, with over 12 break-out sessions. The theme is "Ignite Your Mojo" and our goal is provide an energizing learning environment for Workplace Learning professionals to network, learn about some new leading edge tools, and re-connect with a passion for learning.

HOLD THE DATE and Register Now. Check out more information and updates on the full conference agenda here.

Announcing a special event that is sure to sell out!

Thursday, Oct 4: Rapid E-Learning Workshop – Building Engaging and Interactive E-Learning! Featuring Tom Kulhmann, VP of Community for Articulate.

Join Tom Kuhlmann as he shares some practical tips on getting the most out of the resources you have to build engaging and interactive e-learning courses. Register to attend this workshop and the 2012 Conference for a high-impact two-days of fantastic learning!

To register and for more information, click here.

Upcoming Chapter Meeting

August Chapter Meeting - August 21, 2012

Communication in Action - Improv for Business Systems
Presented by Andrew McMasters

In this highly interactive presentation, Andrew McMasters will lead participants through a series of exercises to help them gain insight into their personal thought processes and clarity about where creativity and innovation are stalled.   In this workshop, you will learn specific techniques for:

  • Creatively solving problems
  • Brainstorming
  • Reframing a situation
  • Accepting change as opportunity
  • Stimulating innovative thought and vision
  • Defining a person's relationship to success

About the Presenter

Andrew McMasters is the founder and Artistic Director of Wing-It Productions, a Seattle based non-profit arts agency. He also works across the country as a professional speaker, facilitator and host for multiple organizations. Andrew specializes in improvisational theater, and uses his experience to help organizations harness the tools and practices inherent in improvisation; listening, accepting new ideas and building on offers.



7:30-8:00 a.m. Registration, refreshments, networking
8:00-9:15 a.m. Announcements and presentation
9:15-9:30 a.m. Networking



2100 Building
2100 – 24th Ave
Seattle, WA 98144


Register now for August's Chapter Meeting

Next Month

The Intersection of Change Theory and Grief Process: The How and Why Behind Organizational and Behavior Change
Presented by Carol Bowser, Conflict Management Strategies
September 18, 5:30-7:30 p.m.
2100 Building, 2100 – 24th Ave, Seattle, Washington 98144

Register Now! For September's Meeting

August Promotion:  Free Chapter Meeting

If you or someone you know has been putting off membership in the Puget Sound Chapter, August is a great month to make the commitment.  All new ASTDps members will receive one free Chapter meeting when they join through August 31. 

New members will receive an emailed voucher which they can print out and bring to any monthly meeting for a walk-in registration, a $20 savings.  Click here to go to online membership registration.

Ambassadors Welcome New Members

The Mentors are now Ambassadors!  Yes, that’s right, we’ve given ourselves a promotion, at least in title.  We also have spiffy new name badges with an identifying purple “ribbon”.  What’s next, you may wonder - a raise, perhaps?

If you aren’t familiar with us, we are a small group of volunteers dedicated to reaching out and welcoming our new Puget Sound Chapter members.  Started in spring of 2011 by Membership Services Board Member Sally Templeton and Mentor Program Director Bill Robinson, each Ambassador is charged with developing and maintaining one-to-one relationships with their assigned new members to help with on-boarding and member engagement.

As stated in our program description, our objectives are:

  • To assist new members on how to get the most value from the Chapter based on the new member’s goals.  For example, direct them toward resources online or otherwise, introduce them to members, identify appropriate volunteer opportunities, and alert them to events of interest.
  • To increase a sense of community and connectedness among new Chapter members.
  • To encourage 80% membership renewals.

If you are new to the Chapter in the last year, we hope you have been able to connect with your Ambassador (or formerly, Mentor).  Initial contact is always made through email.  Telephone calls and  LinkedIn connections are common follow-up actions.  Sometimes our Ambassadors go on to meet with their new members over coffee and of course, at Chapter events.

Ambassadors make an initial concerted effort to reach out to new members within the first 6 weeks of their membership.  After that, a minimum of quarterly contact is maintained for the first year to ensure that their reasons for joining are being addressed and met by the Chapter.

Our current Ambassadors are Helene Cho, Shelby Satko, Amanda Klein, Ronnie Ashline , Darren Linker and Darren Skousen.  If you see us with our purple-sashed name badges, please feel free to introduce yourself.  We are here to answer your questions and help you find the resources you need, whether you are a new member or have been around a long time.  And, no need to call us by our titles, our first names are just fine! 

Member Spotlight

Member Spotlight: Jeff Tillett
by Kathy Englert

Do you want to learn more about the upcoming ASTDps Regional Conference being held on October 5th? Or maybe you’re wondering how to take advantage of some of the mobile learning options available today. If you also happen to be interested in learning how to fish on the fly, you are in luck! Right here in our local ASTD chapter is a man with the expertise to help in all three areas … Jeff Tillett.

Jeff’s involvement with ASTD began a few years ago – not with our local chapter, however. He jumped right in at the national level and presented a session on Rapid Video at the 2010 ASTD TechKnowledge Conference. He went on to serve on the planning committee for the 2012 TechKnowledge Conference.  Prior to his involvement with ASTD, he participated for about seven years in the DevLearn conferences sponsored by the eLearning Guild. Jeff joined our local chapter this year and has become heavily involved in – you guessed it – conference planning! With all of his experience, he’s the perfect choice for helping make our regional conference a reality.

Jeff’s “day job” is with an Illinois-based company called Float Mobile Learning, for whom he works as a mobile learning strategist and evangelist. He’s particularly excited about a new app for social learning recently released by Float Mobile Learning called Tappestry. It is a free tool that is generating a lot of buzz. Through his job as an evangelist, Jeff speaks about mobile learning to audiences all over the United States and also spends a lot of time interviewing thought leaders, discussing trends they see and ideas they have. You can watch some of these interviews on Jeff’s YouTube channel. If you talk with Jeff, you quickly see how much he loves his job and how passionate he is about the field of learning development.

Jeff describes his entry into the world of training as “accidental.” During the 1990’s, he worked as a developer and graphic designer for many “dot gones” (a term he coined). One of these jobs involved the creation of graphical, interactive exercises for educational software designed to teach English to a Japanese audience. Jeff loved this work and decided to pursue more of it. He went on to work as an instructional designer for such companies as Microsoft and T-Mobile, and now training and development work is all that he does.

Jeff loves technology and helping people learn to use technology in efficient and effective ways. But he still believes that no matter what technology you choose or what new bells and whistles are available, the keys to effective learning remain the same. Maintain good instructional design and continue to focus on how people learn. He thinks a huge advantage of mobile learning is the minimalist approach it dictates. You simply cannot put too many words on a mobile device; therefore you are forced to key in on learning objectives and keep the material focused. He thinks there is huge potential for mobile learning, especially in the area of performance support, and notes that in a short three years, the question about mobile learning has changed from “How will we use this technology?” to “Would you like to see what we are doing with this technology?”.

Another piece of advice Jeff has for anyone new to this field or wanting to expand their knowledge of the field is to attend conferences. Although the expenses can be high, he believes such events offer tremendous value. The key is to engage with other people and spend time building relationships. Much of Jeff’s career has been influenced by people he has met at ASTD and other conferences.

Finally, Jeff is your go-to guy if you want to try your hand at fly fishing. When he’s not working (which is rare!), you can find him hanging out near a wilderness river with his fishing gear in hand, spending time with his three sons and his two-year-old granddaughter, or working on his very popular web site that pays tribute to Bruce Lee.

You can follow Jeff’s musings on mobile learning at http://floatlearning.com/blog/   Jeff would also love to connect with people on Twitter @mojotillet.

Volunteer Opportunities with Our ASTDps Chapter

Here are some intriguing positions for members who are interested in using their strengths, gaining new skills, and meeting new people.  Check them out yourself or forward these descriptions to someone you know who may be a fit.


Conference Volunteers

Want to attend the upcoming Oct 4 and 5 events, give back to the Chapter, meet some great people and save money – all at the same time? Consider volunteering your time at these events! 

If you would like to be considered, please send an e-mail to Sherry Johnson Metz, VP Professional Development, at: prodev@astdps.org, to get more information and to complete a Volunteer Form.


Newsletter Producer/Editor

The ASTDps Newsletter Producer/Editor is responsible for collecting newsletter articles and inserting these articles into an existing HTML-email newsletter format and email service provider. Estimated hours are 5-7 per month.

Responsibilities include:

  • Collect all newsletter article submissions from Board Members and volunteers
  • Format the HTML email newsletter following the existing template and structure 
  • Collaborate with Director of Communications to proof-read and approve newsletter for distribution
  • Load the HTML into:
    • ASTD newsletter webpage (full newsletter version)
    • ASTD newsletter archive (PDF copy)

Skills required include:

  • Photoshop (light graphic design/editing)
  • Content Management System (CMS) administration
  • Strong communication skills and ability to work in a team-based environment
  • Prior newsletter production experience a plus

If you are interested or have questions about this position, please contact Nicole Forward, VP of  Communications, at communications@astdps.org.


ASTDps Technologies Support Specialist

The ASTDps Technologies Support Specialist is responsible for supporting various Internet-based technologies. Estimated hours are 1 hour per week / 4-6 hours per month.

Responsibilities include:

  • Apply text and image updates to ASTDps Website (basic HTML and CMS skill)
  • Modify and create new graphics as needed (Photoshop experience)
  • Participate in design and usability strategies
  • Support analytics and reporting

Skills required include:

  • HTML/XML Editing (Dreamweaver or equivalent)
  • Basic Graphic Design (Photoshop or equivalent)
  • Basic Content Management System (CMS) experience
  • Other web-based technologies support skill

Please contact Stephen “Magic” Johnson at technology@astdps.org if you are interested in or have questions about this position.


Board Member Positions

We are now accepting applications for the following Board Members for the 2013-2014 term.  All Board positions are volunteer (unpaid) and many positions involve managing a team of ASTDps volunteers. 

Director of Programs.  This position manages the committee responsible for organizing monthly chapter meetings. Tasks include: Overseeing a team of volunteers on the program and registration committees, working with committee members to recruit and communicate with potential speakers; reviewing and giving feedback on proposals; preparing speakers for presentation; event planning; participating in monthly board meetings; managing program budget.  Time commitment 10-20 hours/month for 2 years.  Questions? Contact Karen Thornton, VP of Programs, at programs@astdps.org.

Director of Membership Services.  This position is responsible for attracting and retaining new members and for managing the process of recruiting volunteers.  Tasks include overseeing the Ambassador (formerly Mentor) team, conducting an annual membership survey, recruiting and matching volunteers to needed positions, facilitating new member orientations, and organizing a membership drive.  Time commitment 15-25 hours/ month for 2 years.  For a complete job description, contact Sally Templeton at memservices@astdps.org.

Director of Professional Development.  This position plans and implements special professional development events outside of the monthly chapter meetings, which could include a regional conference such as the one planned for this October.  Time commitment 20-35 hours/ month for 2 years.  For more information, contact Sherry Johnson Metz at prodev@astdps.org.

Director of Research and Learning Science.  This position tracks trends, informs decisions, and connects research to practice and performance.  Responsibilities include overseeing the Research Manager, Creativity and Innovation Special Interest Group (SIG), the Workforce Development Liaison, writing Research Factoids, and conducting the annual membership survey.  Time commitment 12-20 hours/ month for 2 years.  For more information, contact Bev Parnell at research@astdps.org.

Finance Manager for 2013, moving to Director of Finance in 2014.  The Finance Director manages and reports on the finances of the Chapter.  In 2013, the Finance Manager will shadow, and be mentored by the current Director of Finance and move onto the Board in 2014 as Director of Finance.  Tasks include preparing budgets, balancing bank statements, analyzing financial impact of proposals and preparing financial statements.  Time commitment 12-15 hours/ month for 1 year, then moving into Director of Finance (2 year commitment).  For more information, contact Jeane Daley at finance@astdps.org.

Applications for Board Member positions are available on our website under Volunteer Openings and are due October 1, 2012.

If these opportunities don’t speak to you, but you are interested in becoming more involved in your ASTD chapter, please contact your mentor or V.P. of Membership Services Sally Templeton at memservices@astdps.org.

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