LearnKey Video Production team takes top honors!

by Jeff - Aug 21, 2018


It is one thing to task a video production team to create the best video based training IT & Career Ready courses, then its another when the not only meet and exceed their goal, but decide to move their entire office at the same time.

I am pleased to announce Marian Eckley, Neil Olsen and Seth Magers are the recipients of LearnKey’s Key Contributor Award for the second Quarter of this year! They truly represent our core values Ease- with the way the managed to transition out of one studio into another, Value- in that during the entire move the managed to stay ahead of the production goal and trust – making sure everything was done just right. That included finding the right office, negotiating a win/win lease and coordinating the move at a time when there would be no delay in production.  just like previous LearnKey Key Contributor Award winners they achieved these results without being told what to do!

Our senior instructor Jason Manibog had this to say ” Marian started with getting the right person lined up to understand what we needed in a new office (i.e. decent space, little noise, the right price, etc.). From there,  Seth and Neil took the “can do” approach to coordinating the removal of what was not needed and coordinating what needed to be moved.

LearnKey’s “Why” is Improving Employability Every Day. This team makes sure our courses “scream ” that message and I am just glad that their new office is something that gives them the best environment to keep doing that with each and every course they produce.

Please join me in congratulating them!


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Key Contributor Award winners: Always making sure we dot our “I’s” and cross our “T’s”

by Jeff - Mar 08, 2018


Today I am please to announce our Key Contributor award winners for Q4 2017: Val Deuel, Bart Giddings, Sheena Chamberlain, and Leigh Kulbacki.

Just like all our employees, they play a very important role in our company, as one of the most important aspects to our business is making sure that all of our digital employability learning solutions have the proper grammar and spelling for all our assessments, labs, and written content. They must also ensure all our video training has the quality so we always deliver an exceptional learning experience. Thanks to our awesome Quality Control team they are always there to catch all the errors and help us avoid re-work.

This past year they took it one step further by taking on transcribing and closed captioning most of our courses released in 2017. That was an amazing accomplishment as the results were transcribing 51 sessions and completing the closed captioning for 31 sessions. This resulted in a 27% increase in productivity!

Our “why” is improving employability every day. My goal is to make sure that everyone in the company knows how they impact that why. I am proud of this team as they truly know the importance of their role in our company and really stand for our core values: Ease, Value, and Trust!

Please join me and the rest of the LearnKey/Better Learning Systems family in congratulating them on this great accomplishment, and one thing is for sure: they are not going to like that I wrote this blog without them checking it before it gets posted! But what the heck, sometimes you have to go out on the edge. After all, it’s the thought that counts!


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Preparation and arrival for the Job Ready Gypsy – Remote Year

by Beth - Feb 16, 2018


Remote Year Kanyini Family

 

Week one of Remote Year ends, I must remind myself that it is in fact only 1 week! After a short week of a crash course in acclimating to a new culture, new location, and total opposite time zone, I find that I am blown away that even with all those distractions, we have already created deep connections with a talented, diverse group of nomadic professionals. In our travel family of 35 people we have IT professionals, graphic designers, attorneys, HR/management and political consultants, producers, operations managers, finance professionals and entrepreneurs. The work ethic is astounding, the talent is mind-blowing, and I get an entire year with this group.

Packing:

WAY harder than I expected. How does one pack for a year?! Be warned, this is not an advising entry.

Round 1

Supplies: Bagail packing cubes, 24-inch Samsonite suitcase, and 30-liter North Face Backpack

Packed each packing cube individually, weighed them, added up to about 38 pounds. Too easy. Ready to combine that with my 8-pound suitcase should be totally fine. Oh, but wait, that is 46, must be under 20 kg which Is 44.9 pounds.

Take out two shirts and extra pair of shoes I won’t need. No problem.

Let’s get this all together now.

Everything is going my way! Room to spare in the suitcase, easy to close, this is way too easy. I lifted it up to the scale, feels a bit heavy.

Scale: 52.8 pounds. I took stuff out and it weighs more than originally?!

Round 2 Beth vs. Samsonite

Take out a pair of jeans, two more shirts, and some luxury items I enjoy (the struggle was real on that one). Sweating as if I am running a marathon in 70% humidity.

Scale: 47.2. Dear baby Jesus, please help guide me, give me strength.

I need reinforcements. “Mom, I need help!” Mom provides sound advice, that I of course, do not take, because, Yes! I DO need 7 tank tops!

Round 3

Back hurts. I am sweating. Start heeding mom’s advice.

No extras, less shirts, one bra, still tough to remove dresses, but down two more dresses, 1 skirt, really… I am not even sure what is left.

Scale: 43.6

Hallelujah! I can successfully board the plane.

Street food street, where I got my first Malaysian meal and ringgit, the local currency

Arrival Day

Immigration: My first time out of North America and I stood in line for an hour just to be asked, “are you traveling alone?” said with an awkward giggle from the immigration dude/officer. Is that normal? Seemed a bit anticlimactic. Then, wait for it, the FIRST stamp in my Passport! Wow, what an incredible experience. I feel like I accomplished something. Made the 24 hours of travel and loss of one day all worth it.

Airport: Surprisingly western. Littered with overpriced stores and souvenir shops. You know you are not in the states because of the smells of curry being carried to your nose in the humid, wet air, as if you were face-first over the hot pot of freshly cooked curry. Another shocking difference was the restroom. I was not expecting to squat but after being on a plane for almost 5 hours, any bathroom would suffice. At first, I thought it was so kind for two women to let me ahead of them in line, I thought, “they must see the emergency in my eyes.” Then I waked into the stall only to have the metaphorical wind knocked out of me in shock. Knowing I was being looked at, I acted like, oh, I got this. One thing the Army teaches you, you can pee anywhere. So, I used the “squat” toilet, only to realize as I left, there were western toilet options. The women were not allowing me to go ahead, they were waiting for the western toilet. Well, when in Asia!

Fast forward to about five days into the year: More than enough clothes, but should have brought my little bottle of Tide (MOM!) and my water filter. Could have done without 1 pair of jeans (too hot and humid). Overall, there is no way of knowing what you will need for an entire year. If the rest of the locations are like Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, there will be plenty of places to buy anything you need.


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Big Hit: Know Your Talents announces Chief Flourishing Officer

by Jeff - Jan 18, 2018


Lara Skutt

I am pleased to announce a new team member, Lara Skutt, who earlier this month joined the Know Your Talents (KYT) team. Lara’s role is Chief Flourishing Officer as her passion is leadership development, coaching/counseling, and training, which has brought her to join Melanie, Sarah, and Lori’s team. Her primary focus will be on growth of the business by enabling clients to meet their goals through leadership development and employee engagement.

Lara is a seasoned senior-level HR professional with over twenty (20) years of experience across multiple corporate industries/demographics. Additionally, she has extensive experience in all aspects of HR, which will also enhance the KYT offering.  She lives in Arizona (has for over 22 years), works out of the KYT office in Scottsdale, and is the mother of three (3) amazing children. Her personal passions are family, health/wellness, and a drive for continued knowledge.

Here is a nugget…Those of you who are familiar with ProScan and the KYT offering might find it interesting to note that she has the exact same behavior/profile as Lori Coruccini.

Its a great start for 2018 and please join me in welcoming Lara to the KYT/Better Learning Systems family!


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2018: Same “Why” Be great at “Improving Employability Every Day”

by Jeff - Jan 16, 2018


As we kick off the new year at LearnKey there is alot of excitement. We recently had everyone in the company write up their 2018 goals (i.e. courses released, students gaining certification/graduation/employment,etc.) and by the looks of it, we are going to be a big year. We plan on adding new offerings (i.e. language localization) and will be enhancing some of our courses with other learning facilitators.

Each month I will share a status on one of our goals. This month it is industry certification. Last year, we exceeded our goal, having our military veteran students achieve over 658 globally recognized industry IT & Career Ready Certifications in CompTIA, Microsoft, Cisco, Adobe, Windows, IC3, and more! That was a great accomplishment, as it aligns with our true “Why,” which is Improving Employability Every Day. This is a big one for us because it is a team effort to make sure our students succeed. Next year’s goal is to exceed over 800 certifications.  Additionally, we expanded our offering of courses available through Certiport and on the GMetrix Platform, enabling thousands of other students in college and K-12 to have access to our certification courses.

We continue to see increased demand for soft/employability skills training with some of our most popular titles on Job Hunting in a Digital World, Know  Your Talents, Making a Good Impression, Resume Skills, Business Ethics on the Job, and Be Careful Before You Click!

Speaking of soft/employability skills, be sure to read the article on “The surprising thing Google learned about its employees and what it means to today’s students”.  Very interesting in 2013, Google decided to test its hiring hypothesis by crunching every bit and byte of hiring, firing, and promotion data accumulated since the company’s incorporation in 1998. Project Oxygen shocked everyone by concluding that, among the eight most important qualities of Google’s top employees, STEM expertise comes in dead last. The seven top characteristics of success at Google are all soft skills: being a good coach, communicating and listening well, possessing insights into others (including others different values and points of view), having empathy toward and being supportive of one’s colleagues, being a good critical thinker and problem solver, and being able to make connections across complex ideas.

These skills are in demand at every level of an organization, which is why we are dedicated to making sure our Video-Based Digital Media Library of courses has over 225 titles on those important skills.

Our next big course release is CompTIA’s Security+, coming at the end of this month. We are really excited to make that available as this is one of our signature courses. You can find more info on our 2018 course release schedule here!

Here’s to a great start in 2018 and check back next month for another update.


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Newest Key Contributor Award Winner Chip Ehlers

by Jeff - Dec 06, 2017


Chip Ehlers Key Contributor Award

Today I am pleased to announce the newest recipient of our Key Contributor Award, Chip Ehlers. This award is really about who in our companies embraces our core values, Ease, Value and Trust, and make key contributions so we can fulfill our “Why,” which is improving employability every day.

Chip, a 16-year LearnKey team member never shies away from any task that he is asked to do. From order entry and fulfillment to printing and shipping catalogs, Chip never says ‘it can’t be done.’ Of course he is most famous in the St. George office for serenading his coworkers when a catchy song comes on the radio. Here are some things that his nominating coworkers said about Chip:

Jared: Chip is the ultimate team player and does whatever is needed to help the team win. He isn’t above anything that he is asked. He rolls up his sleeves and figures out a way to get the job done. You can ALWAYS count on Chip.

Kim: When I think of Chip- he is always cool, calm, and collected. If deadlines change and he has to adjust his schedule – it’s always “no problem.”

Chad: Chip goes above and beyond in everything that he’s asked to do.

One of our programs has had strong growth over 30% the last two years. That means Chip’s workload has grown by that and never once has he asked for relief or additional help.  His ability to handle multiple projects and tasks with critical deadlines is second to none. Most recently while in St. George I mentioned that we should probably look to clean up some of our storage areas by the end of the year, but when I came back two weeks ago Chip had it done.  Did not have to ask twice, he took care of it. Again, way to go Chip!

Please join me in congratulating Chip on receiving this award and for sticking to our core values: Ease, Value, and Trust, but most importantly, he truly helps LearnKey Improve Employability Every Day!


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Hello December: T-Minus: 52 Days until take-off

by Beth - Dec 05, 2017


Welcome to December, y’all!

It is officially official, my Remote Year experience has a launch date. On January 26, 2018, I will be flying from Phoenix to L.A., then on to Hong Kong, and finally landing in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia! The longest flight I have taken to date has been six hours from NYC to L.A., which is a stroll to the park compared to the 16-hour flight to Hong Kong. I can barely sit for six hours, let alone 16! Oy! Any tips for long flights are appreciated, so please feel free to comment. Also new in November, as part of the Remote Year program, we have gotten to meet our community! I have already spoken with several co-travelers that I will be with, and three are from Arizona! With even that limited information, this travel has become less daunting and mysterious and more welcoming. Enough about me…

In mid-October, I had the pleasure to work with LearnKey’s production team to create a marketing video for our sister company, Brighton College. I am giving a HUGE shout-out to the incredible work of Mer, Jason, Seth, and Neil. They create masterful videos with ease. If you have never been on a production shoot, it is NOT easy. I, the amateur, probably had 15 takes just to say, “the need is urgent”. Neil creatively edited the video, resulting in me sounding less awkward. Thanks Neil! Feel free to check out the video below. Side note: Neil and Seth have amazing taste in horribly-terrific holiday horror films.

The Job Ready Team is pleased to announce that three BO students were hired and started work in November! LearnKey is proud to improve employability every day! We are also giving our online Job Ready Resource Center a new look, launching in 2018. Please keep a lookout for the improved layout.

Wishing you all an inspired holiday season. Next blog will be from Kuala Lumpur!


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September Flew By; October Disappeared

by Beth - Nov 06, 2017


Graduates of the SNAP Program.

Did I just have an unusually long blink? Where did September go? AND October is gone?!

Lots of exciting news from September, maybe that’s why it went by so fast…

It all started with getting to meet a LearnKey Alumni that relocated to AZ for an IT job at Spectrum. It was an honor to shake his hand and see the joy in his eyes brought on by finding a career in his field. LearnKey has assisted nine Blue Ocean graduates finding a new career in their field in the last six months.

Next, I was shocked by the final itinerary for my Remote Year experience! It could not have imagined a better list of places! Emotional roller coaster is a term that I continue to use to describe my experience but it is more like ton of happy, exciting, anxiety bricks hitting you at any moment, like when you are celebrating a moment with a friend who you may not see for an entire year, presenting a resume and interview workshop in Las Vegas, or ya know, just breathing, just hits you. Seeing the places in which I will live made this experience become very, very real. And, here they are https://remoteyear.com/itinerary-kanyini .

Speaking of that resume workshop and Interview workshop, I had the pleasure to work with an amazing company called Three Square. Three Square is Southern Nevada’s only food bank providing food assistance to the residents of Lincoln, Nye, Esmeralda, and Clark counties. Three Square’s mission is to provide wholesome food to hungry people, while passionately pursuing a hunger-free community. We combine food banking (warehousing canned and boxed goods), food rescue (obtaining surplus or unused meats, bread, dairy and produce from hospitality and grocery outlets), and ready-to-eat meals to be the most complete food solution for Southern Nevada. They, in partnership with LearnKey, have stepped up to take its Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as food stamps, outreach efforts to the next level. Three Square approached the state with a proposal that it create a pilot program to train SNAP recipients in call-center work, with an eye toward becoming a certified third-party training provider.

I had the privilege to administer the Resume Writing and interview Workshop to the students in the pilot program for Three Square as of October 10, 2017, 3 out of the 5 participants have been hired.

Honorable Mentions:

  • Went to the HeroZona Launch Luncheon for Arizona’s Veteran’s week, find more information here: https://www.herozona.com/
  • Met with an AZ Congresswoman’s Community Liaison who mentioned that the VA is moving to hire more work-from-home customer services representatives, more information will be shared as it is received.

September 2017 has changed my life for the better with all the inspiring events. I look forward to sharing my October with y’all!

 


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Improving Employability Every Day at its Best!

by Jeff - Sep 08, 2017


Yesterday, I had the honor to meet Cory Olsson (pictured with Beth Ciaramello and Gloria Klug), a military veteran from Alpena, MI, who completed the LearnKey Blue Ocean program. Cory recently relocated to El Mirage, Arizona, after accepting a position with Spectrum Technology Solutions in Phoenix, Arizona. Upon completing the program, Beth Ciaramello, LearnKey’s Job Ready Manager, worked with Cory to gain employment.  This is the best part of the job: meeting someone who completed our program and now has the skills to succeed in IT.

At LearnKey we are so passionate about “Improving Employability Every Day” for our customers that when we have an opportunity to learn about one of our own student’s success it just makes it all worth it. Cory is the one we are most proud of as our program is not easy. Beth raved about what an amazing student Cory was and how he had the skills, smarts, and right attitude to be successful. Spectrum Technology Solutions is a great company and Gloria Klug, Owner/VP Business Development, is excited to have Cory as part of her team.

Again, it is an honor to watch learners succeed in our program and gain employment, as it builds the motivation for all of us to create the best employability learning solutions on the planet.


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Newest Key Contributor Award Recipient – Makes his passion drive Improving Employability Every Day

by Jeff - Aug 11, 2017


I am pleased to announce our 2017 2nd Quarter Key Contributor Award goes to Brian Tremelling. He has shown us from the beginning over 8 years ago that when you believe in something, most importantly yourself, dreams can come true. This award is a big deal for our company as it is given to those that really demonstrate our core values: Ease, Value, and Trust, as well as our “Why” which is Improving Employability Every Day.

Brian Tremelling Key Contributor Award

One of Brian’s most proud accomplishments is how he led the way in building our vocational rehab programs, but what you don’t see is his passion, commitment, and dedication to the stuff that is not fun. Building course bundles, creating and automating process flows, dealing with the internal and external challenges that come when you are focused on progressing our students so they reach their employability goals. However, this past quarter, in addition to managing the program, getting us approved in other states, and 110% dedicated to improving our process and technology, to make other jobs easier he alone took on technical work in order to enhance our student information system (SIS). The entire team got a sneak peak at it three weeks ago and are so excited to roll it out. We are close, very close – Brian led that cause and through bumps and roadblocks he handled it like a pro!

His peers were excited to hear what former Key Contributor Award Winners had to say about Brian:

Jason Manibog says Brian is a great organizer, always helping production, and always has the students’ best interest in mind. Wyett Ihler shared: “I am impressed with Brian’s dedication and ability to stick to something when he has a belief. That passion has served us so well. Willing to assert but does so in a very respectful manner.” Ben Lee: “Brian is a great friend who always tries to understand/listen to the people he works with. Doesn’t give up when he believes in something.” Tristan Roberts: “Brian Keeps an open mind and always receptive to change for the better of the student and LK. Always gives an honest opinion.” Kim Johnson: “Astounded by vast knowledge base, curricula, team player, always has the best interest of LearnKey.”

So you hear: Passion, belief, team player, good listener, honest, respectful. I’d like to second all of those as he and I will always be tied together for dealing with our fair share of challenge, opportunities, and positive outcomes. He reconfirmed that if you do the right thing, things have a way of working out.

Please join me in once again congratulating Brian on his many contributions to LearnKey!


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