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#DearID Season 1 Wrap Up

In: Dear ID ShowShowing my Work

At the end of all things (at least in Season 1), let’s take a look back and what we can take away from a season of interviews and discussions on the instructional design journey.

Hey everyone welcome to Dear Instructional Designer, the show about the instructional design journey. I’m your host, Kristin Anthony. We have reached the end of Season 1 of Dear ID folks. Fear not! A Season 2 is on the way after a brief hiatus. But I wanted to take this opportunity on the final episode of the season to really evaluate what’s been happening. So first and foremost, thank you so much for showing up every week and listening. And a special thanks to the folks who have left reviews on iTunes:

  • Tim Waxenfelter
  • Maria Widmer
  • The Honest Truth
  • And Dianne Weir

I really appreciate those. And thanks to everyone who retweeted on Twitter and sent words of encouragement. As you guys might know from your own portfolio work or personal projects, putting something out into the world is always nerve-wracking. You know, it’s always a toss up as to whether it will be of help to anyone, whether anyone will care.  But this show has a small but pretty solid base and I just want to say thanks.

I also want to say how amazing it’s been to speak with so many instructional designers over the course of the season. It’s been really, truly awesome to talk with so many folks in so many different industries and I really appreciate all of the insight they’ve brought to bear on all of the pain points we feel from being at the bottom of the organizational ladder to dealing with difficult subject matter experts, to starting and growing your own business, we’ve really seen a lot of different journeys.

And I think my main takeaway from this has been the nuance of everyone’s situation. I mean, I think everyone is learning that they have to do what works for them. Sometimes we have to compromise, sometimes we have to work a lot, sometimes we have to work with a difficult client until the end of our contract and then say goodbye. There has been advice, great advice and insight, but no hard and fast rules here.

And going back to that very first interview with Brian Washburn, I’m reminded of how frustrated I often was in that first year, in my first ID project to hear so many people telling me how I ought to be doing things. I think what we’ve seen on this show was a spectrum of successful instructional designers who grew to the place where they are now and are continuing to grow and there hasn’t been one journey or one right way. They’ve taken what applied to them and left the rest; To quote Ms. Frizzle of the Magic School Bus, they’ve gotten messy; they’ve made mistakes. And to all of the other newbies out there, this is key.

But there’s also been a lot of agreement among several things, right? Nearly everyone I’ve spoken with has attested to the power of having a varied portfolio out there on the web that you can point to. Nearly everyone has talked about how they’ve gotten to the point where they’ve learned or are learning to push back respectfully, to ask the right questions. Nearly everyone has pointed to the importance of both practice of the skills you have now as well as learning how to quickly develop new ones. And those things can seem really overwhelming.

So let’s circle back. I started this show with a week of episodes dedicated to building an instructional design portfolio and here we are back again at that place where I emphasize how important it is to practice your skills. And here’s something I want to leave you with from season 1: Pick one thing; pick one skill that you want to concentrate on for the next 6 to 12 months. Pick one thing. And just start making stuff to help yourself practice that thing. You get to decide what makes the most sense to you. What you’re most interested in. But pick one thing. And start now.

So many of our guests have pointed out the Articulate Elearning challenges as a way of making time to make, if you’re interested. And in conversation with a lot of different folks, I’m going to be working on the idea of monthly ID jams where you can make time to make and even collaborate with other IDs on a portfolio project. I’d love to hear what you think about this idea and whether you’d get on board.

Thank you so much for listening. Thank you so much for a great season 1 of The Dear Instructional Designer Show. I really want to keep this thing going past Season 2 but I need two things from you. Firstly, if you know anyone you’d like to hear from on the show, please contact me, I’m looking for more guests. I’m @anthkris on Twitter or you can email me at kristin AT dear

I also want to hear how you felt about season 1. I’ve got numbers and I’ll be writing a blog post about the season 1 stats, but I want to hear from you. Leave a review on iTunes! You can learn more about how at Take care and I will see you back here for Season 2!