Lenczner Slaght: Learn Something New Wednesdays

Graphic illustration of a hand drawing a lightbulb, with the words Time for Something New spelled out. It accompanies a story on a law firm training program at Lenczner Slaght

Have we mentioned before that we love law firm trainers? They are some of the most passionate, creative, driven people we’ve ever met. Case in point: Tracy Fadlallah, Learning and Development Specialist at Lenczner Slaght, a leading litigation firm in Canada. We recently learned about a program that Tracy’s been running at her law firm called “Learn Something New Wednesdays.”

In a nutshell: Every week on (you guessed it!) Wednesday, she runs a five-minute tutorial on a single skill that helps drive efficiency and productivity in the firm.

We wanted to learn more, so we did a Q&A with Tracy. Read on.

Q. How many attendees join the sessions on average? 

A. It really depends on the topic, usually it is between 30 and 40 attendees. Last week was my lowest at 18 but it was on deleting and restoring docs from iManage, which is a skill everyone should already have known. The highest was 58 and the topic was print screens and Snip & Sketch. 

Q. Do you offer these “Learn Something New” sessions at a consistent time on Wednesdays?

A. Yes, 9:15 am or 9:30 am, depending on my schedule.

Q. Are the sessions normally 5 minutes or so? 

A. Yes. I try to keep it 5 minutes or less which is harder than you think because there is so much you can say, and I like to talk. But I book the session for 5 minutes only to keep everyone, including me, on track.

Q. Can you share a list of topics that you’ve covered in recent “Learn Something New” sessions? 

A. See the list below. Some topics are for buttons unique to our legal tools provider (number 3) or custom Firm buttons (number 4).

  1. Excel’s Flash Fill
  2. Screenshots and Screen / Document Snippets (Print Screen and Snip & Sketch)
  3. Quickly Insert a Pre-Formatted Table / Format an Existing Table
  4. Inserting / Updating Sequential Numbers (Exhibit / Chart / Table / Figure Numbering)
  5. Deleting / Restoring Documents from iManage Work 10

Q. How do you identify the topics you’re going to cover?

A. Before I launched this training program, I previewed it to everyone at our firm by email and invited them to send me their favourite tips, buttons, shortcuts, etc. Now I’m getting people saying, “Can I suggest you show this?” I’m doing some of those, and also just basing it on things that I think are really cool (like Flash Fill), things I know can make work life easier, things people ask me or our Helpdesk team about, etc. I’m trying to show things from different programs, so we cover a wide variety of topics and not just focus on one or two programs.

Q. Do you ask people to register or is it just a standing link that is wide open every week? 

A. I send a calendar invite early Wednesday morning or sometimes Tuesday afternoon with the topic so people can then decide if they want to attend or not. Of course, I try to sell the topic in the email with images or examples on why it’s such a great feature and how it can make life easier.

Q. Once they’re done, you put the recording in your SavvyAcademy LMS, right? 

A. Yes, immediately after the session. I upload it into the SavvyAcademy LMS as a Resource under a Learn Something New Category and will include links to any sample documents they can use to practice. I also add a note and a link to the LMS recording to the Learning & Development page of LS HQ (our intranet) which feeds to the Home Page.

Q. Do you tease them in the banner or any other in-LMS marketing? 

A. I have a Learn Something New banner with links to the Resources > Learn Something New category as well as a link to the topics I’ve already done so they can jump to that topic if they want. 

Based on attendance, Tracy’s mini sessions are proving to be very popular. Recent feedback includes:

  • “This was the first one I attended, but these quick hitter sessions are a great idea. 1 tip. Minimal time commitment, then release people to get on with their day.”
  • “I love your 5 mins learning sessions!”
  • “These 5 min sessions are so great!”

Do you have a program like Tracy’s? Can we share it with your fellow trainers? Contact Janalee at janalee@savvytraining.com.


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