I am fairly confident the majority of parents fell into one of two camps this past Sunday. The first camp would represent parents who had purchased school supplies and school clothes weeks ago and were able to relax Sunday evening to watch 60 Minutes. And, the second camp would represent parents (like myself) scrambling to get the kids ready for school and recorded 60 minutes to watch it later in the week.
As a not-so-proud member of camp #2, I was finally able to watch 60 Minutes online (website link: http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=50154139n) and was awe-struck by the story on Sal Khan and the Khan Academy (website link: http://www.khanacademy.org/about).
To summarize the story, back in 2004 Sal had posted lessons online to help his cousin with Algebra. While the videos were really intended for his cousin and only his cousin, he soon realized that others (and quite a number) were watching as well. Now, over 3000 10-minute videos have been recorded that educate millions (yes millions) of people around the world. For teachers participating in Kahn Academy pilot programs, they are provided dashboards that monitor the progress of each student working on a problem.
One teacher that is participating in a pilot program said she is now afforded the opportunity to spend her time more effectively as she no longer has to assume that everyone is struggling with a math problem, and she can assist those who are encountering challenges. Both Bill Gates of Microsoft and Eric Schmidt of Google are huge fans and speak out frequently about the Khan Academy. To paraphrase Eric, he said that a major part of the success of the Khan Academy is its ability to measure whether it is working or not. The Khan Academy is gathering massive amounts of data to analyze the effectiveness of the lessons so they can be refined to help students (from all walks of life) understand, succeed in education and ultimately have endless opportunities available to them in the future.
Like in business, we can no longer just build on what was done before. We have to revisit what we are ultimately trying to achieve and use the new technology available (that no longer discriminates based on size) to help us achieve what we want to achieve, measure our progress and refine our approach in accordance with the data provided to create endless possibilities.
Are you measuring the right things? Do you refine strategy and approach based on measures? Most in HR do this once a year or so and we live in an era of NOW!
Amazing technology available to the masses + measuring + refining = endless possibilities and opportunities to RE-IMAGINE!