Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Are You an Educator or Enabler | AKA: When Technology Exceeds Our Evolutionary Standing

Do you teach Revit or Archicad or BIM or anything?

There is no magic wand to learning! 

Questions in a class situation, lecture, conference, etc. is not what this post is dealing with; this is for dealing with "That" person ;)

My intention to give some help to those who have to give help to others.

With an understanding that our poorly evolved brains are being slammed into, with and by technologies that are far too rapidly and ever-changing for all 7+ billion of us to get at the same speed... 

This post is also keeping other psycho-social possibilities out of it (for now); therefore let me ask that fundamental question: Are you an educator or enabler?

Learning is ultimately accomplished by the student.

Don't agree? And I quote:

“I cannot teach anybody anything. I can only make them think” 

This "Are you an educator or an enabler?" is a question I ask myself often and try to land on the former as much as I can, I hope you do (or will) too. With that said, here are a few methods to give folks, in order to nudge their innate abilities of learning and exploration...

HELP!!! How do I do that???
The best way to do it is the best way to do it. 

The magic wand treatment is what many people seem to be looking for with tips and tricks in my experience. In other words, many people want—if not expect—great solutions with no personal work or investment—like having a magic wand passed over them, imparting knowledge from the ether.

I contend that one should not ‘necessarily’ give an answer immediately… If, for instance the answer is known to be in Help then ask the person “Have you tried “F1”?, or "Have you tried a quick internet search?"... If the answer is “no” and the solution (as I stated) is known to be in Help, etc. then my suggestion is to provide them the answer by doing just that...hit F1 and show them the answer was right there!

Giving an answer to an obvious question—one that exists in HELP, etc.—is an enabling behavior and I contend actually does not help the person in the long-term; rather it hinders their intellect.

Obviously there ARE times where an answer is immediate, no matter the situation, like 20 seconds before a print, etc. but those are fewer and more far between than one might imagine…

OK, now onto the process of goodness; Getting Help(ed) ;)

Need I say more? Use that little button!

A large number of issues can actually be resolved by doing a few minutes of looking at HELP!


If your company blocks the installation of help then you’re going to have to ask them… IKR.

If an older version of help is what you need…well, you’re on your own (but the solution to finding them is “hidden” herein… OK, not really hidden… ;)

FWIW: HELP ‘should be’ installed locally, unless you are from a firm that precludes it…

The Internet
Yeah, search your issue (including the word ‘Revit’) and I will bet you’ll find someone has already had the issue and chances are there are solutions, if not also video accompaniments. Now I am going to assume you know how to search the web so I won’t include a link to https://www.google.com/ LOL, that said, if you are a teacher, educator or simply the office or team answer giver… and you have “That User” then perhaps use LMGTFY (http://lmgtfy.com/) –a fun and slightly evil and useful tool which I find helps teach the lessons herein :D

Go to http://www.revitforum.org/ create a username and password, and then use it! (remember to check the box “Remember Me?” everytime logging-in, or you will be logged out after a short while).

I like to keep that site onscreen so I can see the conversations, ask and answer... so join in, it helps.

Like, OMG Jay, I don’t have time!

You DO Have Time!
The “I don’t have time” excuse is oft cited, so let me give a tip on that:
If or when one says, “I don’t have time” stop and consider that it might just be similar to the following:

I don’t have time to do it right
I don’t have time to learn something I will need everyday, when I work

Not always but more often than not when one says “I don’t have time” they actually do but for whatever reason they would rather it take threefold the amount of time to re-do over and over later…or ask the same thing over and over…

Again, there is a balance between answering others and becoming an enabler… I hope this helps you, as it does me; especially the next line(s) ;)

The best way to do it is the best way to do it.

No matter the time.