This Week's Herman Trend Alert

Super-Agers Part 2

  The Herman Trend Alert

February 11, 2004

The Future of Training

The future of training is gaming. We saw it coming in some consulting we did with the United States Department of Defense, in our study of the Millennials (born 1985 and later), and in the rise of companies like Discovery Learning (

The United States Army's success with its challenging computer game, America's Army, is an impressive testimonial to the military's understanding of the younger generation. Although it glorifies violence, the game was such a successful recruiting tool that there is an updated version: America's Army 2.0: Special Forces.

The Millennials have a different vocabulary, different ways of relating with each other, different play opportunities and, certainly, different media bombarding their psyches. Accustomed to screen images changing more than 100 times per minute, this new generation simply won't tolerate being "communicated at," as if they were simply receivers. They expect people to meet them on their level, speaking their language, with their vocabulary, engaging them interactively.

Marc Prensky, author of "Digital Game-Based Learning" (McGraw Hill) characterizes the difference between this population of learners and their predecessors as "digital natives" versus "digital immigrants." He emphasizes the facility with which this younger generation embraces new technologies.

Here's what employers (and teachers) need to remember when working with these digital natives: They're good at multi-tasking and parallel processing. Accessing information in a non-linear fashion comes naturally, because they are accustomed to hyperlinking. Good graphics are vital to engagement. They have no patience for passive learning. (For them, learning is never a spectator sport.) Work must be engineered to be more like play with built-in opportunities for achievement and heroism. Don't expect digital natives to play any game that doesn't have a reasonably immediate payoff.

In a subsequent Herman Trend Alert, we'll talk more about the emergence of effective games and simulations. We'll look at present and future uses of this exciting technology.

To be successful in the future, leaders must to learn to train, guide, and motivate younger workers, not only by speaking their language, but also by creating games that these digital natives will choose to play.

© Copyright 1998- by The Herman Group, Inc. -- reproduction for publication is encouraged, with the following attribution: From "The Herman Trend Alert," by Joyce Gioia, Strategic Business Futurist. 1.336.210.3548 or To sign up, visit The Herman Trend Alert is a trademark of The Herman Group, Inc."

This week, our own author, Joyce delivered the second episode of her own show on (and now as well) It's Your Future with Joyce Gioia debuted last month in various timeslots---due to time zones. The second episode featured Joyce talking about The Future of Living Spaces. Of course, Joyce will continue to deliver the futures commentary segment of INGOMU's podcast, The Future of Life, Work, and Wellness which also appears on the Futures Television channel on Each podcast closes with a special commentary from our author Joyce about what the interview insights mean for the future. Eventually, will offer the listings for the showings of both programs.

The War for Talent is back. How can you compete? By having an Employee Retention Specialist on your staff. If you were ever interested in taking the Employee Retention Certification Program, now is the time for you to speak up. Joyce is putting together another class featuring the latest research for the end of September. Call Carol at 336.210.3548 or email to express your interest.

Hosted by the Dubai Futures Foundation, the event will convene 400 of the world's top futurists to anticipate challenges, imagine opportunities, share foresight, and shape the future. For more information, visit

To read this Herman Trend Alert on the web:

Herman Trend Alerts are produced by the Herman Group, strategic business futurists, Certified Management Consultants, authors, and professional speakers.

New subscribers are always welcome. There is no charge for this public service. The Herman Trend Alert is read by over 30,000 people in 90 countries, including other websites and printed periodicals. Click here to sign up for the Herman Trend Alert.

Do you enjoy receiving this weekly e-mail update? Contact us about our co-branded Herman Trend Alert service.

Subscribe or Unsubscribe to weekly Herman Trend Alert
View this week's Herman Trend Alert
Archived Weekly Herman Trend Alerts


[ Home About Products Resources Media ]


7112 Viridian Lane
Austin, TX 78739
Voice: 336-210-3548
Toll Free in US & Canada: 800-227-3566

  © The Herman Group. All rights reserved.

Web site design by WebEditor Design Services, Inc.