Almost 18 years ago David Holcombe and Heidi Fisk looked at the learning and development industry and noticed a hole. The industry was increasingly shifting towards technology-based learning solutions. Computer-based training and education had passed a tipping point and were rapidly becoming mainstream in their use.
However, there wasn’t a central community that people could tap into to make sense of this emerging world. A platform was needed that enabled people to explore the world of technology-based learning and discover the best practices that were emerging in our field. Most importantly, a space was needed for trainers and educators to connect with each other so we could learn from one another and, through those connections, enhance our practices as a community.
And with that, The eLearning Guild was born.
A lot has changed in the almost two decades since the Guild was founded; the technology-driven changes in education and training have only accelerated. What started as a space to explore the shift to computer-based learning has grown exponentially over the years, helping individuals and organizations make sense of smartphones, tablets, and all sorts of other technologies that are changing our approach to training and education. And that rate of change is only going to increase in the future.
Throughout all of these changes, one thing that has remained constant within the Guild is our core belief: Together we are better.
That vision statement shapes everything we do, from our conferences to our publications and everything else in between. We are stronger together than we could ever be on our own. Our community supports the growth of individuals and organizations, and the more we grow and develop as a community, the more we help our industry move forward.
It’s that core vision of together we are better that has always energized me about the future of our industry, and what excites me about a change taking place at the Guild.
Earlier today a press release was issued that announced the next stage in the growth of our community, as the CloserStill Media Group has acquired a majority stake in The eLearning Guild.
While you may not be familiar with CloserStill Media, you may be familiar with its international learning communities and events, notably Learning Technologies exhibition and conference in London, OEB (Online Educa Berlin), and Learning Technologies France, as well as other learning and development communities around the globe.
So what does this mean to our community?
In many ways this change will not be apparent to our community. The Guild will operate independently and will still be run by the same team that has supported our community for years. Everything you’ve grown to love about the eLearning Guild community will continue.
What this acquisition does do is connect the Guild to a broader global community in new and exciting ways. We’ll be able to bring more international perspectives into the conversations we host and highlight solutions from all around the globe that our community can learn from.
The together in together we are better is going to grow not only in number, but in the diversity of perspective and culture. We’re increasingly working in a global society, and connecting with the CloserStill network will enable the Guild community to provide even more support to help us grow in our professions and support each other in our work.
In short, it’s an exciting time to be a part of the Guild community, and we look forward to expanding the value we at the Guild provide to our members and building new connections that enhance the value we provide to each other.
Thanks for everything you do, and for being a part of our community.
-David Kelly, Executive Director of The eLearning Guild