Experiencing the FT’s #FTDLW12

I’m spending the day today at the Financial Times headquarters in London, taking part in an employee-focused learning experience that, until I arrived here early this morning, I hadn’t appreciated the full scale of what they’re endeavouring to achieve.

The FT’s Digital Learning Week 2012 is a three-day event for employees, comprising presentations, panel discussions, workshops and online learning sessions designed, the FT says, to inform, educate and encourage dialogue around digital and social media topics and trends.

I’m leading one of those workshops, about blogging – the first time I’ve led such a session on this topic for about four years – once in the morning and again in the afternoon. Much has changed in so short a time! (The session is entitled “Is There Any Point in Blogging in the Age of Twitter, Facebook and Instagram?”; the deck I used is on Slideshare and is embedded below.)

What’s especially interesting about what the FT is doing this week is that it is a global event, enabling employees across every discipline – journalists, editors, business people, communicators, finance, etc – in multiple FT locations around the world to get access to a great deal of insight from a wide range of people from inside and outside the company.

In addition to London, #FTDLW12 – that’s the Twitter hashtag – is also taking place in FT offices in New York, Hong Kong, Singapore, Beijing and Tokyo. It’s the first event of its type the FT has run.

FT CEO John Ridding said: “[…] This Digital Learning Week is a part of a larger effort to invest in the FT’s greatest asset, our talented and experienced staff, with a variety of training opportunities. We encourage an ongoing dialogue to ensure we stay flexible, curious and continue to succeed in this rapidly changing market.”

From what I’ve observed today, from both my workshop this morning and one on mobile I sat in later, there clearly is a strong desire from FT people to take advantage of a unique learning opportunity to gain insight – much of it undoubtedly actionable – from the menu of choice offered over the three days.

As always, if you take part in an event as a presenter, you always learn from it, sometimes in ways you don’t expect. So the learning flows in many directions; that’s certainly been my experience today.

And regarding my workshop which asks the question is there any point in blogging today? I think it’s easy to answer! Which reminds me, I must make one little tweak to my deck for my next session at 3pm…

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