Workshops are not courses

Traditional courses, online or off, are linear. They’re based on a direct connection between the instructor’s content and the student’s attention. Write this down, memorize this, understand that.

Traditional courses scale in a particular way. They scale even better when the instructor appears on video.

Workshops are different. Workshops are about the cohort. The other students. The people you meet, the people you learn from and the people you teach. Workshops involve work, not the compliance inherent in testing and certification.

If you want to learn to build a boat, take a workshop.

It’s very difficult to run workshops at scale in the real world. The physics of interaction make it awkward. But it turns out that online, a workshop is a powerful way to learn.

A course can be quite effective. Students get a ton of actionable insights from the highly-rated video courses I offer at Udemy. But a course can’t possibly provide the magic of a workshop.

And workshops are the future of online learning.

That’s because in a workshop, you are able to connect, and connection is at the heart of the economy we live in now. Connection means finding the others. Embracing peer support, giving more than you get, engaging with ideas and with other people. Connection is part of the process of growth. Connecting with possibility, with change and with the generosity of new ideas and new approaches.

The Akimbo Workshops aren’t courses.

In the most recent session of one of our seminars, a typical day saw students interacting with each other every three minutes, 7,000 times a day. In a typical course, that number would be zero.

We’re launching two workshops this week. One might be a good fit for you, if that’s the direction you’re headed:

The Freelancer’s Workshop (a short sprint toward finding better clients).

The Bootstrapper’s Workshop (a deeper dive into building an organization without outside funding).

Each of these is specific. They use Akimbo’s customized discussion platform to create large-scale communities built around solving a particular challenge. They are there to help you find the others.

Four times a year, we run the altMBA, our elite flagship, a workshop that’s very different from the others. It has curated small groups, video conferencing, hands-on alumni coaches and focused cohorts that meet every day for a month. It’s designed to help you see more clearly, decide more effectively and most of all, transform into the leader you’re capable of becoming.

I’ve been a teacher my entire career, and the workshops we’re running now are the most effective way I’ve found to help people level up. I hope you can join us.

[also, another new riff on this from me on Medium]