Episode 80: Pivoting To Online Teaching With Jeff Brown
Hi, I’m Rob Cairns here. I’m the CEO and Chief Creative meeting ideas of stunning digital marketing.. We’ve all been staying at home for a number of weeks, and there’s lots going on in the world. Just do me a favor. Take care of yourself and your loved ones in this tough time. In today’s podcast episode, I sit down with my good friend, Jeff Brown. And we talked about Jeff Smoove and pivoting from being a workplace education trainer in the classroom, to having to train online and some of the tools that Jeff uses in a whole conversation around online training. I think you’ll find this week’s episode in it, fireside chat, as Jeff and I did very interesting. But before we get to the chat with Jeff, let’s get on to the news.
In today’s news, there’s lots going on in the world. If you haven’t heard Boris Johnson’s out of ICU, and home, actually out of the hospital in the UK, which is goodness. the Tour de France, the world’s top cycling competition, one I truly live has been love has been postponed to August. And many more events are canceled and postponed as the world practices social distancing. The mass sell to the US continues, Donald Trump can’t get on board with his governor. So it’s a big issue. And frankly, it’s time for Trump to get off his butt and start to be cooperative. Arguing with reporters, claiming their top infection disease specialist in us knows nothing. And even canceling funding the who these are all miss Givens that Trump’s and Trump’s administration should not be doing. And frankly, it’s time to get cohesive and think of the American people and stop putting your own agenda first. Fortunately, in Canada, our politicians are all basically on the same page with some differences and trying to work through how we help people best. Apparently, in India, they’re now going to start relaxing some new lockdown regulations. And we’ll go on to France, where Amazon has threatened to stop delivering anything in France due to a court ruling saying they haven’t treated workers fairly. These are all just a multitude of things going on in the world. And we wish they weren’t. So without further ado, after some news highlights, let’s get on to this week’s podcast with my good friend Jeff Brown.
Hey, all with its Rob Cairns here with my good friend, Jeff Brown. And you know, a couple of weeks ago, Jeff and I talked about churches and how they’re live streaming. And I thought I’d get Jeff back on today because Jeff is a workplace education in Nova Scotia trainer in Nova Scotia. And what Jeff is doing is he’s taken all his courses, and he’s teaching online. So I thought we’d share some do’s and don’ts with about how to teach online what to do, what not to do, and try and help you guys out, because that’s why we’re here. And how are you today, Jeff?
Oh, I’m great. Rob, looking forward to this talk and getting some great information out that will help people do better.
Yeah, because one of the problems is I’ve listened to a couple interesting podcasts. I was listening to tech news weekly, which is on the twit network. And they had a teacher who was using YouTube for high school. And all she was doing was YouTube teaching. I’ve got a good colleague of mine, Leslie, who’s shout out to her in her school. They’re using Google Classroom, they’re not doing any voice or any. They’re not doing any voice or any video, it’s forbidden by the board because the board doesn’t have the checks and balances. And you’re using some interesting stuff. So let’s just kind of talk about what happened COVID came and how did you pivot?
Well, first of all, what’s the before before was in a classroom, workplace education. The model is 12 or 12 people seven to 12 people in a room learning, partnering in the learning so to speak. Now COVID comes in. And now we are all online. And everything that I liked about workplace education, the facial cues, the body cues, the interaction. I’m now striving to incorporate that into zoom and Google Classroom, so to speak. So it’s been a bit of a challenge, a bit of an adjustment. But having done multitude of multitudes of classrooms already online, I’m really impressed that how easily this can be done, as long as the instructor keeps the participants engaged and watch watches for facial cues, and verbal cues. And everything else that goes along with making sure they’re base keeping up and learning because we, the most important part is the transfer of the knowledge and the skills to these participants.
So so true. And I think also a big part about this is online etiquette for people don’t like you and I live in a online world. So for us, it’s a little easier, but simple things like if you got to go to the bathroom, in the middle of a class, chill your camera for two minutes while you walk out of the room, and mute yourself. If you’re not talking mute yourself. If your pet started acting up, mute yourself. I’ve been through that one, as you know, many times, my dog you show up on podcast meetings, you know, take your pick and show your fellow participants some respect, right?
Isn’t that? Absolutely. Because it’s at the end of the day, we’ve been even insisted in Nova Scotia here that all participants wear earbuds. And the sole reason for that is not only background noise, but things are going to be set in a workshop that are meant to be private. And if you’ve got family moving back and forth in the background, that’s not for their readers, so to speak. And we want to make sure that we create a safe environment where people can share stuff, and worry about get going beyond the group,
you know, and yeah, and the other tip about earbuds is it stops feedback. So I use a headset, as you know, but same thing, right? So stop, stop feedback, it stops feedback and background noise and all kinds of stuff. And that’s really beneficial. And it’s something most people forget. And most people forget about the etiquette in the group. So every so often, we have to remind them, I was on a call a couple last Tuesday, a networking group. And we had 180 people on zoom on that call, if you can believe that. And that was just, if it wasn’t for etiquette rules, we would have all died in the middle.
Absolutely, we’ve heard some good zoom stories, too. I remember hearing one where a person was having lunch in the background, and everybody could hear the the fork and like just go right to the plate. It is I’ve heard
I’ve heard those stories. And my attitude with those stories is I take the rich mount high seeing if you’ve seen the famous scene, call your disappears into the classroom. And then Mr. Han grabs that pizza and shares it with everybody. And spicoli doesn’t manage to get any of his pizza. And I was on a call where that happened. And I piped up and said, So when are you shipping mine?
Absolutely. And asked literally, if you’re going to do that. Just mute your mic. Yeah. And because it can be quite distracting.
Yeah. So the other cool thing about zoom is and I use them for client coaching you use or client teaching as well. And use them for teaching, we can give the participants a recording. And in this case, we’re actually doing this podcast recording on zoom, I’m recording and I’m only going to purpose the audio. But the neat thing is we can give them that recording County,
we certainly candidate reinforces the learning moment. So in other words, a lot of what I do builds, and sometimes I’m always looking to see when a participant stops learning. But sometimes they struggle a little bit and I can see in their eyes, but to have recording so they can go over and again, to reinforce the learning of the transcript skills is invaluable for an instructor and the participants.
Yeah, yeah, it’s so it’s so is and that’s why I do private coaching calls. One of the value I give my clients is I give them an audio only recording, which is easy from zoom, because it gives you just the audio file. I give them the video file and say Here you go. And, and they love that. I mean, it’s a value add to your students to whoever’s learning that you just can’t. Me. Absolutely. So I know one of the issues I was mentioning, I have a friend who’s a teacher with especially with elementary schools has privacy. And that can be an issue with adults as well. Have you run into any concerns about cameras or things like that when
people learn nothing yet? Most of my participants we follow a pretty In formal, but formal kind of format, where there’s an expectation that this is business, and it’s not just for laughs and giggles, so there’s got to be that element of professionalism. That’s expected because we’re, we’re raising up champions here, we’re not just doing it for the fun of it, although I absolutely love it. But we want to see great outcomes. And that takes a professional a spirit of excellence, so to speak, in how the process is conducted on all the parties. sighs
Yeah, it’s so true. And just for fun, we did a, I did a zoom call with 14 people. And we went into call saying, bring your best zoom bombing outfit. is to break the ice, because we all know, before zoom changed some privacy defaults. There was a zoom bombing, I heard that one case where my mother was on a call where a guy showed up in a clown suit in a battle class. And I laugh. But you know, they descripted these are out in force. And we do know that right?
They’re getting bored beyond all belief. And they just, I mean, they’re they’re looking to, I mean, that energy should be harvested in a positive way, somehow, that’s that’s a lot of good energy wasted. Soon, Bobby.
Yeah, they actually have a discord group. And for those who don’t know, discord is for gamers. And all they do is they they post zoom numbers with that didn’t have passwords assigned to the zoom rooms. And that’s so folks, you know, go back and listen to all the stuff and read the stuff on zoom bombing, they’ve changed some defaults for the right way. If you’re really concerned to lock the room, when you’re, you know, after all your participants are no drawback to locking the room is, then if somebody gets booted out, they can’t get booted back in. But as a host take the time and learn how to boot somebody out of a zoom call. And that will solve you 10 Pass. Absolutely.
And and the greatest challenge, you and I have talked about it, Rob is that all of a sudden through COVID-19, where we’ve now are doing more zoom calls than ever before. And for some people, it’s a new experience. And unless you read the owner’s manual, so to speak, you’re going to end up with the barbecue syndrome. In other words, at the end of the barbecue, there’s that one part you got to put on. And there’s the bolt and you can’t get it in because it should have been the first part he put on enough all last. And so when it comes to zoom, zoom is put out some really good short videos on their YouTube channel, which really gives you a basic overview of what’s required. And for the most part, most of our zoom meetings really need to be password protected for especially business activities. We need to make sure we protect the participants people that are on the other line and sharing it publicly. I mean, script kiddies laptops, picking guess a zoom, public link, and then just jump into it. And I love the idea of the waiting room view. And I’ve talked about this Robin. Sometimes it’s a little bit of a hassle. But at the end of the day, excuse me, at the end of the day, you can guarantee who’s going to be in the room. And you can protect all your participants from any online foolishness. And so we could see them once you’re in the zoom meeting, see someone looking to come in you can see they’re waiting you can allow them in. And that’s one of the one of the things that I require is the participants put their their name in that way I know who I’m letting him
know, no, no question. And I think the waiting room helps. I think the passwords help. I think the biggest problem I spent 21 years in it and healthcare and I’m glad I’m not there right now I have to tell you, they what helps is educating people and we’ve basically thrown the wolf stall these remote workers so it’s not just zoom. It’s security. It’s you know, I did a it was in my newsletter, I sent out a warning and I talked about some things like what he was as a homework you need to do well. It’s zoom, a password manager all the stuff you and I have talked about over the years. And and and don’t forget your website. I you know and and the bottom line is people aren’t doing it and the script kiddies have more and more time on their hands because they’re all stuck at home like you and I are. So what are they What are they doing? They’re getting into trouble. And yeah, and the dark web is is heating up there. Actually tools, and I’ve seen them that go through zoom meeting rooms and see which ones don’t have passwords. There’s already hack tools developed for that. But but it’s not really a true hack. It’s, it’s like leaving the front door of your house open. And that’s, that’s it and blaming the fee for breaking it, so to speak. Yeah. And like, honestly, the reason zones taken off is it’s economical one to one is free. one to many over 40 minutes is 1495 on a yearly subscription us, or 9095 month they go to my meeting? Is that over $80 for the same service. Yeah. And that’s
a huge difference, and for what the average person needs software to do.
And I’m gonna put this out there because I like to put theories out there. I’m not so sure Cisco, who owns go to my meeting and go to my webinar wasn’t the ones who turned all the lawmakers on to zoom, because it would be in their financial best interest to do that. I’m not saying they did. I’m saying it is plausible. And I should put a disclaimer there. That’s my personal opinion and not be just based on what I’ve seen in the industry in the last number of years. Yeah, so. So let’s move on to Google Classroom. You’re using Google Classroom. I’ve used Google Classroom, my friend Leslie’s using Google Classroom, how are you finding managing google classroom? and kinda how does it work? And how does that take place?
Okay, well, basically, for each of my programs, I set up a classroom. And I create what I call blocks, which are essentially topics, sections. And then each section I draw up in the notes, I’ll drop in videos to reinforce the learning. And what I like about classroom is, I can make sure that all the participants get a copy of the notes. Now. If we throw it into google classroom, and you’re not careful with what you allow participants to do, someone could drag the notes out of the shared with me to their folder, and all of a sudden, nobody else is left with none. If you don’t assign the right permission level, for instance, Google Classroom solve set. And not only that, but the communication system. I mean, we’re not do any snow days, but Google Classroom would be ideal for participants because you just type in snow day. And it goes right to everybody in their class. And they know where to go extremely simple way to communicate from teacher to students or students to students, for instance, and I love the ability to create, what I do is I create templates and I copy the templates into see I’m doing a social media level one program, I can make a template, I can copy it, and I can make that maybe a specific social media program for helmsdale, Nova Scotia, for example. And that way, I’ll add the students or I couldn’t have them add themselves with a code. And then from there, it is so easy to make sure that, hey, I create a new note, I can save it, I can throw it right in their classroom. And everybody instantly has it. It’s ideal, just love it.
And because it’s browser based, it’s cross platform based. So I know my friend, Leslie, who’s teachers in the field school board, which is just west of Mississauga, they’re using Google Classroom. And they’ve had a couple of kids who either the parents have to use the device in the house during school time, or they don’t have a device, because that’s the problem with elementary kids. So what they’ve actually done in their case, devone Chromebooks that the school has out to these kids, so they can educate. And because it’s cross platform base, all you need is a web browser, really. And that’s the beauty of it.
And you know, what’s cool about Google Classroom, Rob, right? It’s just not for a classroom. I basically teach my participants, hey, you’ve got a business. This is a classroom scenario. But let’s think about other ways that we could use Google Classroom for your business. So it’s not just for teacher students. It could be business customer.
I’ve used the front of that. Yeah. And I think I’m even looking at using it. I’m working on an online course right now, we’ve got to do something in all these times, right. And I’m actually thinking, I’m going to put all the videos and PDFs on Google Classroom. And until somebody pays me I’m not giving them the authorization code to that classroom. And, and that’s kind of I’m thinking, I’m going to try that as a model. Just for something different. I’ve used Other services, just to try and see if that works or not.
And I like the ability to assign a block or a topic one week at a time. That way you can drip out the training, the assignments, the information one week at a time, for example.
Yeah, yeah, the way my friend Leslie is doing classroom is it’s a holiday today. And in North America, if you’re watching a modal in Canada, actually, Easter Monday is typically a holiday for us. It’s all a day for probably for you in Nova Scotia goes for government. And it’s all good for teachers. And what she’s doing is she’s uploading today, all her stuff for the week. So show up on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and she actually sets it to drop out at 835. The morning of the day. So if it’s Tuesday’s license, show set hers to drip out Tuesday at 835. And in her case, she’s not using zoom. She’s actually answering kids questions in the Google Classroom chat.
Yes. And that’s a very effective chat system, because it could be, in this case, picture to a student or teacher to all the students, for instance, it is extremely customizable. How the chat works based on what you need at the moment.
Yeah, and I’m just, and every morning, she posts a good morning, this is Miss Kemptonn. And I’m here to help you all day till 235. So their school runs 835 to 235. And every night at 235, she reminds people to catch up that night. And by the way, she’ll respond to further messages at 835. And then she spends her day responding to questions about the assignments that they posted.
Yeah. And what’s neat about the classroom is that you can keep track of what’s being opened, what is being returned to you. Yeah. So it has a multitude of possibilities, not just for teacher student classrooms.
Now, I should also tell people, you know, it comes with G Suite, if you’re a G Suite user, and if you have a Gmail account, believe it or not, you can set Google Classroom out without a G Suite account. I’ve tried. Absolutely, absolutely. The only limitation is your Google Drive space, because it actually creates a directory on your Google Drive called classroom.
Yes. And each classroom that you set up becomes a sub folder in the classroom folder of drive.
Yeah, so really, all you’re limited to is so even if you’ve got a quick five lesson course, you could do that on a free gmail account, believe it or not, if I’ve provided you’re not using a Google Drive for anything else. But yes, that’s a great idea. Right. Great idea. Yeah. So you know, so that’s why I really liked the tool. There’s some other ones out there. But I think it’s the easiest tool. I kind of watched informally what kids are using. And it seems that the popular tool, and not just in North America, but much in kids in the UK and kids in Germany, and sort of they’re all fucking a Google Classroom. So, you know, Google’s a company we all love to hate, but I hate to love. Oh, I know.
And so far, I have under my belt 340, our G Suite programs, and the common denominator for their products is the word easy. Yeah, now I’m a, I would say I’m a pretty diehard Microsoft Office user, well, I hear the song in my head, you’re cheating hard. I’m just loving the simplicity of the G Suite. And it’s hard when it’s something really easy in G Suite. And you go to try to do that to Microsoft. And it’s an extra one step or two steps or more work to get the same thing done. So Google has really done a great job with G Suite, and a great job with Google Classroom.
There’s no question I would be apt to tell you. Microsoft has done a really good job on the office 365 site. I know that’s not what we’re talking about. But folks keep in mind are rebranding that. So it’s going to be called Microsoft 365. So you’ll see some branding changes are actually in the process of doing it now. And they’ve done some really cool things, like giving teams away for free right now. I, I actually use both products in my business. So I I’m kind of half in one and half in the other, but it’s more understanding the concepts than the product itself. Absolutely.
Absolutely. And what I’m looking for when I teach these programs is simplicity. Now, the old keep it simple rule,
I want to throw another tool out there, we’re doing a lot of this teaching. And one of the tools that I really liked for teaching is a tool called loom spelled l Om. And what boom does, it has the ability for you to take to do a video, or you can take a screen share and put your head like in the bottom left hand corner. And you can watch some of the through a tutorial video. So the reason I mentioned lumas, you can use them create that video and then upload it to YouTube or Google Classroom wherever you want to put it, and use that in hand in hand with something else to be able to create those videos to help people
absolutely give us something to play over and over and over again. Because some people get a concept really fast. Other people, they just need a little other kick at the can maybe another angle or a few replays. And all of a sudden the light goes off and they get it. And the whole idea of what you and I do, Rob is we want to make sure that people understand. Because with understanding comes greater functionality. And with greater functionality, we’re hoping greater opportunity for the people that come around us. Yeah, so true. Do you have any other tips for people trying to teach from the biggest thing is be patient with people, I absolutely want to see their faces. Because if if they’re struggling, I want to make sure that I can catch them up. But at the end of the day, we still have a group of people, they’re still struggling with technology that may not even be ready for this, you know, they put it off and off and off. And now all of a sudden, we’re thrown into a place where you have to have these skills, and people are struggling. So for me is to be patient with people providing opportunities for them to learn because this COVID-19 is going to produce a new normal, we’re not going back to the way things were before. Now I’m still looking forward to workplace education training in class. But people are going to see that working from home. For some people, it’s not a bad idea. And for a company, you know what less office space they have to pay for. These are things that are going to happen. But when it comes to training, I want to make sure that at the end of the day, participants finish the program further ahead. When they started, that’s always been my goal, to transfer the skills and really see them be successful. And I Rob, I’ve got to admit, I had a letter from one of my participants, it almost brought me to tears. They were really struggling with technology and business that has great potential. And I kept on encouraging them and making sure that they weren’t left behind. And that when I got that letter he asked, you know what you and I love to do to help people. When that happens. It’s like a home run, so to speak
or not no question. And it’s not people think it’s all about the money. I’m a big believer, if you help enough people, you’ll get out of life what you need. And absolutely. And it’s all about helping people. I mean, I’ve been running around helping people, I’ve been jumping on calls with people and trying to say, Hey, I just want to help you. And you know what, and I’ve even done some things like dangled some what I call time sensitive pricing, you know, to help people lately. So I’ve said, Okay, I know what my normal pricing is. And by the way, if you don’t want to jump at that, that’s up to you. But, you know, I would I would use this time truly, to kind of get ahead in life, whether it’s at home, whether it’s with your family, whether it’s sorting out stuff at home, whether it’s your business, whether it’s education, whatever you want to do. I mean, go learn something. There’s all kinds of great places. Many libraries have memberships with lynda.com, for those who don’t know, is the LinkedIn learning site. So it’s your library card in Toronto, you can go take a course for free. So the point I’m making is use this as an opportunity. Don’t sit in front of the streaming all day, and scream for eight hours a day, a breakdown in half and say, hey, I want to learn something. I want to do something I ordered this morning Russell Brunson a shout out to Russell. He’s the founder of clickfunnels. I ordered Traffic Secrets this morning. And I bought not only daily audit Traffic Secrets, I upgraded to the updated bound, hardcover box set and bought all the books on audio at the same time. Because the books don’t ship till the fifth of may and I’m I want to get into this now. So the time is to learn something and get ahead for your business now don’t wait.
Absolutely. And when you think about it, It’s time to learn something, it’s time to work on your business, not just in your business, because a lot of in your business is put on hold, it’s time to everything you’ve put off everything that you want it to do, but didn’t have time to do. Now is a time maybe you need to freshen the website up, you got paperwork in the office that you just say, you know, when I get around to it, I’ll clean it up. Well, now’s the time to do things like that. So that when you this thing, the all clear sounds, we’re running, not stretching, to begin to get things rolling, we want to be right out of the gate,
and trick us an opportunity guys, like, honestly, this has opportunity like never before the world has changed. And you either embrace the change, or I can promise you, in six months, you’ll be out of business. And I mean that and I I’m not trying to scare you, I’m just being realistic. And I’d rather be there. And if you’re creating content or learning something, do it my wife, Jill, what has she been doing? She’s been trying out new recipes and learning different things to bake. That is still a learning activity. Absolutely. So so do some of that. And do do Jeff and no one favor Bitcoin to the people you live with. This is really hard with personal space and stuff like that. Remember, we’re all in this together, we all need to stay home and just think about the people you’re living with and be really kind to them, we don’t know.
Absolutely, try to reach out to people because you just don’t know what they’re thinking, your contact, your touch point might definitely be the thing that literally makes the difference for their day, maybe they’re at a fork in the road, your phone call, helps them take the right direction, so to
speak. Yep. And if you know somebody over 70, and they live near you please call them and offer to help them they shouldn’t be going to the store, they should be at home or I risk offer to go pick something up and you don’t have to make contact, leave it at the door. Like absolutely do that. Do that for them. And and let’s, let’s kind of help each other out. Because I hate to be the bearer of bad news, folks. But this is going to go on for a couple months. So when it very well
could. But Canadians have a really good reputation for helping out and we’re seeing some credibly stellar stories. So keep it up everybody. Keep up the good work and just matter each day matter to one person. So true. Jeff, thanks for your time today. How can somebody get a hold of you to have a question? That a question they can reach me on email, Jay brown at alpha Al PH, a social media Inc, I nc.com. Which means email. That’s the best and fastest way to do it. I’m often doing a lot of training and sometimes calling texting me isn’t the way that I’m going to see it. I can probably sneak away for a quick email. So email, just email that Jay brown at alpha social media inc.com. Rob,
that will get me at Thanks, Jeff. Thanks, everybody. Have an amazing day. And we’ll talk to y’all soon. Thanks, Rob. Everybody. Take care now. Yeah, be safe. Thank you. Bye bye. I want to thank my good friend Jeff Brown for joining us on this week’s podcast. Thanks for sharing all your information about moving from an in class environment to an online clashing room environment. I hope our listeners found this chat that we had very interesting. If you need any more help, please let Jeff or I know reach out. I know either one of us would be glad to help you. As always, if I can help you with any marketing information or digital coaching or anything right now, please jump on over to my website at stunning digital marketing comm scroll down to the bottom and you’ll actually find a button where you can quit can get a free 30 minute consult with me no strings, no nothing. We can talk about digital marketing, we can talk about business, we can talk about coaching, we can talk about pivoting branding, whatever you want time management, I’d be glad to help you take a free because you did. Also scroll down to the bottom of the main page or go to stunning digital marketing slash free and sign up for our email newsletter which has tips tricks and specials directly to your inbox. Be glad to help you with that. I just want to help any businesses that I can right now. also listen to our podcasts. We’re giving out all kinds of tips on how you can manage your business so check those out as well. This week’s podcast is dedicated my late father Bruce Cairns. I also want to put out two special dedications, one to Jill’s brother, Steven McLean, who’s having a tough time in hospital and the other two all the frontline workers who have really done immense work to help us all in this crisis. As always keep your feet on the ground and keep reaching for the stars and make your business succeed. Bye for now and stay safe