When you see a swan gracefully move across the water, it’s easy to forget that it’s legs and webbed-feet are working overtime below the surface, with barely a ripple above it.
For some, there has been as much thrashing and splashing as there has forward momentum since Covid-19 shook-up everyone’s way of doing things back in the spring.
Whilst we visibly power serenely through this strange, new, world, we’ve been through the same as you. We’ve also had to drop everything, change plans, grasp new technology, work remotely, constantly adapt to changes and restrictions, understand what our clients need right now, then rapidly adapt and/or create programmes we can deliver in the new landscape we’re all navigating.
Of course, it hasn’t been easy. There has been plenty of head scratching. How could we take the experiential learning that took place at our HQ in the Lake District and deliver some of that online? What kit and skills had we got that we could actually use to do that?
It helped that our strategic ambition was to increase our blended approach to delivery – we just had to accelerate that. Fast.
During Brathay’s long existence, we have had to contend with many changes – societal, political, and even how our work with children and young people is funded (and more on how our social enterprise model does that soon). So, we’re experts at handling change, and we relish a challenge.
Whilst our work with young people and families in their communities went face-to-face online (or in-person at a safe distance on the doorstep), our individual, team, and leadership programmes were rapidly adapted to include partial, or complete, online delivery.
We haven’t figured out how to bring the Lake District into the homes of our clients through their laptop screen (yet!), but what we have been doing is a million miles away from the disappointing talking-heads-and-Powerpoint that make up so much of online delivery, with limited results.
For starters, there is nothing pre-recorded. It’s all very much live and fully interactive, with breakout rooms, team projects, escape rooms, outdoor challenges, the vital social connection of water cooler moments, group discussion, creative activities, wellbeing tasks, mindful walks… even a silent disco.
We’re designing and delivering learning that is irresistibly engaging; steeped in real life problem solving and embedding deeper learning. Just like we always do.
Like you, we’re learning as we go, buzzing with ideas and adding new elements to further enhance the experience. Looking at solutions to increase engagement and create a learning journey. Making it fun. Ensuring that the experiential learning is still there in digital delivery.
We have set up a Capability Incubator to help us share learning and develop. Our temporary ‘studios’, hastily assembled with what was available, are turning into permanent digital delivery facilities.
Ten of our clients have experienced our programmes this way in the last few months, and the feedback has been fantastic.
They love it. And we’re loving it, too. So can you.