Offbeat is quickly growing into a source where L&Ds look up to for actionable advice. But where does Offbeat get that actionable advice? Well, from other L&Ds. People who have experienced first hand what they write about and can come up with insightful ideas and practices. If you’re reading this, you might be one of them. If so, welcome, you’ve been expected!
What should I know about Offbeat right from the start?
Offbeat is right now two things.
- A weekly newsletter with a curated mix of actionable and fresh links from cool people across our industry. This is put together by me (Lavinia), but I always welcome peers who send over resources they appreciated and want to share;
- A quarterly digital publication written by L&Ds for L&Ds. Every three months (March, June, September, and December) we launch new ideas into the wild. So far we’ve had two issues: Prologue, and Perspectives. This is where we’re mainly looking for contributors and for whom this guide is.
What are you looking for in potential Offbeat contributors?
Passion. Passion. Passion for L&D, for the learning process, for helping organizations succeed through people performance and development.
On the other hand, we don’t want to share experiences we can read in books. We want people to talk about what they went through, projects they launched, theories they tested, challenges, and successes they had. The actionable advice we share is the one that sets Offbeat apart.
What can I write about if I want to contribute to Offbeat?
When I launched Offbeat I thought about a couple of categories you can find here. If you’re thinking about writing for Offbeat there are the main categories we approach:
- Behind L&D Curtains – how people approach L&D strategies, how their programs look like, how their teams are structured. Example: Bianca Guta, Organizational Development Director at eMAG wrote about their leadership development program in An asynchronous perspective of a leadership development program
- One Questions – if there’s one question you would like to answer, this is your category. Example: Oana Chisalom, Instructional Designer Lead at UiPath shared her experience about How can leaders foster learning autonomy in their teams?
- Reforming in-class – stand-alone training is not working. If you know ways to make it more effective, I’d love to hear from you. No articles have been submitted so far in this category;
- Technology HQ – this is where we talk about tools, inviting mostly founders to talk about what kind of tech solutions are building for L&D pros. Example: Raluca Apostol, Co-Founder and CPO of NestorUp talked about how their product helps in leadership development in Using technology to develop your people managers;
- Ten Things I’ve Learned – what have you learned in your journey as an L&D and think others would use in their work? Example: Craig Hiskett, L&D Consultant, Trainer, Coach & Facilitator at Craig Hiskett – Learning Solutions shared his lessons learned in 10 ways to make a positive impact in L&D;
- What’s beyond in class? – did you work on a cool mentorship program? Have you experienced growing communities within or out of your organization? Did you facilitate action learning for a couple of groups? Cool. Want to talk about them? Please do. No articles have been submitted so far in this category;
Still, if you have a topic in mind that won’t fit in any of these categories, feel free to reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll explore it together and see what’s to be done.
Should I be a professional writer to contribute to Offbeat?
No. Definitely not. The writing process is a collaborative one. You put together a draft. I (Lavinia) come back with feedback. You incorporate it. And the process goes on and on until both of us feel proud enough to share the content piece on Offbeat.
Still, are there some tips and tricks that could help me write better?
Yes, there are. Even though you are not a content writer, some apps might push the quality up:
- Grammarly. Offbeat is diverse, so people from all over the world contribute to the project. Not all of us have English as a first language, but that’s not a problem. Still, it’s the common language we use to share our ideas. So to make sure your English is as good as it can be, you can use Grammarly for spellcheck.
- Hemingway App. We want others to understand what they are reading as fast as possible. So we want our text to be cohesive, well structured, and easy to read. The Hemingway App can help you with all that.
- Feedback. If you have colleagues or friends in the industry, ask them to read what you’re writing and come back to you with feedback. If those who know you won’t understand what you are saying, those who don’t will definitely not.
Are there any other specifics I should know about the article I’m writing?
Since you’ve asked, yes, there are:
- There’s a soft deadline for the article draft – a month before the launch. We’ll set together what a month before means. Soft means we can still work on the final version for another two weeks;
- We’re looking for long-pieces of content, of about 2.000 – 2.300 words. This gives you the space to really tell your story, in as much detail as possible. If you have more to say, please do so.
What else will you need from me?
To let the world know who’s doing the amazing work, we’ll need:
- A high-quality headshot;
- A short description of yourself;
- Your role.
Cool. All this sounds awesome. What should I do next?
You can either reach out on LinkedIn or send an email at email@example.com with a short outline of the article, together with the main takeaway. I will revise it and get back to you within 24 hours of receiving your message.
Let’s bring together L&Ds from all over the world through actionable advice,