Think about something you could do for your users (Staff, Employees, even friends and family). Something that is there for them when they want it. Something that is easy to interact with, without having to wait. And something where you can tell your progress instantly, without any effort. How would you like something like that as a learning model?
Well, darn, I don’t have that solution. But isn’t that the sort of thing we want to provide for others, through training and experience?
- Ready for you whenever you are ready
- Easy to engage with (what’s more frustrating that needing to be trained on how to be trained?!)
- Clear progress, moment by moment
This post is inspired by a recent post by Seth Godin titled Escalators, elevators and the ferry. Yes, I’m going way off his original topic but the application jumped out at me. We want learning to be more like escalators. And yes, I know, some people don’t like escalators. OK, it’s not a perfect analogy.
Many system administrators have set policies in place that require regular password changes. Every six months. Every 90 days. Some even require a change every 30 days. Does this make sense?
In defense of system administrators (sometimes I am one), this is a reaction to otherwise bad password issues and it’s a probably failed attempt to have people keep their passwords to themselves. My guess is that it backfires as often as it succeeds.
Changing passwords frequently is a good idea if you use bad passwords. Or short passwords. Or reuse passwords across multiple sites. Or especially if you share passwords with others! Of course, if you’re one of the people who does this (none of my readers, right?), then forcing a new password frequently probably just exacerbates the issue without really solving anything, and maybe even further encourages keeping a list of passwords written down. Horrors!
And then there are things like Heartbleed that mess up everything! Even if you followed every great password idea, you’re suddenly at risk. The solution, of course, is to change your password. Sadly, you really need to. You did all the right things, and this silly bug forces you to make a change.
Suggestion: start planning now. Use the same techniques to generate your next core password, now. Be prepared when you need it.
Last Updated: 9/30/2014
All articles in this series on Passwords:
New staff orientation. A favorite activity for me. Helping people get started with what they most need to know in their first few days on the job. Typically this is technology oriented, but not always!
Sometimes there’s a comment/question along the lines of “OK, that’s great for the new people, but what about the people who have been around for a while. What do we need to teach them?” Sort of a funny / surprising answer: mostly the same things! Most of the time, what people need to learn, or re-learn, is the same old thing. As with sports, the pro is there to remind you of what you already know, not to teach you some brand new idea.
A favorite quote of mine, from John G. Miller, author of QBQ, is “… repetition is the motor of learning!”
How much ‘new’ training do we need? Maybe reviewing what we’ve already learned is at least as valuable.