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Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Whats on the web
Article Type: What's on the web From: Development and Learning in Organizations, Volume 22, Issue 4
The Business Development Institute (BDI) was founded in 2001 and is a leading conference and career fair producer based in New York City. Its elegant web site is full of information about these events as well as the services on offer (quite a wide range) from the company itself.
There is a scrolling calendar of upcoming events for the year (nicely paced) all of which look interesting. “Global communication” and “Connecting ideas with capital” were just two that caught our eye.
There is a section especially for members which outlines the benefits. Here we found a flaw. They offer a “subscription to BDI’s New Magazine (coming in 2005)”. Yes, it is three years since anyone looked at this section of the site.
Nor is it easy to find out how much membership costs - the first thing we would want to know. Otherwise this is a good site with some interesting links.
Small and well-formed
America’s Small Business Development Center Network is the most comprehensive (they say) small business assistance network in the USA and its territories.
The mission of the network is to help new entrepreneurs “realize their dream of business ownership”, and to “assist existing businesses to remain competitive” in the complex marketplace of an ever-changing global economy. Worthy aims.
The site is nice and bright, quick to load and not over-burdened with unnecessary photos of smiling actors pretending to be business people.
The resources section is particularly good. Resources are comprehensive and include information on health and safety, energy efficiency, computer safety and payroll advice to name just a few.
This is well worth a visit whether your small business is in the USA or elsewhere.
Learn all about it
Supposing you were recently given the job of organizing training in a small company, where might you go for help? Well a good starting point might be the About.com web site where under the subheading “Training, development, and education for employees” (just search on any of these) there is a mass of useful information. Hyperlinks take you straight to a wide variety of topics on employee training, employee development, and employee education including Free training online, Training needs assessment, Training evaluation and Training publications. The site is American (or Canadian) oriented but if you need a fast overview of issues and some good basic information, then it is worth a visit.
Another US site is the Business Training Library. This claims to be the “nation’s leading provider of e-learning platforms and support, and blended learning solutions for organizations with fewer than 2,500 employees”. They offer over 3,500 web-based training courses (from many different suppliers) and their site is quite nice looking and easy to navigate. That is the good bit. But is it just me, or do professional sites from large organizations that are riddled with grammatical errors rather defeat the object? Would you trust a company that cannot write a correct sentence or forever mixes singulars and plurals? Maybe it is their web designers’ fault - but then shouldn’t the company have scrutinized their writing a little more carefully? A web site is a shop window. And this one is cracked.
The European Learning Industry Group, eLIG, is an open consortium of leading information and communications technology (ICT) companies and eLearning content providers who seek to promote eLearning throughout Europe, in schools, universities, the workplace and homes.
The organization is worthy, the topic vital, the aim laudable. Their web site however is dreadful. It looks as if it was designed by a committee and then passed to a primary school child who has just switched on a (limited) word-processing program for the first time. Mixed fonts, strange sizes, weird justification, poor use of links…I could go on, but I have not the energy. Let’s hope they read this and do something about it.
Possibly the most hilarious April Fool’s joke this year was Gmail’s new service called Gmail Custom Time, allowing you to send antedated e-mails to make sure your e-mails will never be late, even if you are. (This was supposedly made possible by an “e-flux capacitor” to resolve issues of causality by ingeniously circumventing the so called Grandfather Paradox). If only …
Thanks to www.culture-buzz.com/blog for pointing us at this one.
Best of all
For a particularly interesting and useful site you could always try the Emerald one!
If you have any favorite (or otherwise) sites that you would like us to review on these pages, or wish us to consider your own site, please drop us an e-mail and we will ask our reviewers to check them out.