Corporate Training & e-Learning Blog


Save $$ Using iPods Instead of Binders

Podcast expert John Havens (whom I mentioned in an earlier post below) researches and writes extensively and passionately about - you guess it - podcasting. In his very informative September 20th article called "Positing PodBranding," he talks about building credibility and your brand via podcasts - and how it really can work!

I was particularly struck by something in the article that related directly to corporate training. Someone he interviewed had "been working on an innovation program for a global financial services firm for the past six years. It was relatively easy to convince the client to try podcasting because prior to this year we had been distributing our course materials in a big black binder that included hard copy lecture notes and DVD videos of the learning materials. And this year, instead of doing that we gave every participant a video iPod. Doing this actually cost us $200 LESS per person to use the iPods than for the binders, and that was just for duplication costs."

John went on to say, "(On a quick environmental side note, Wal-Mart recently reported that those big black binders also tend to be the main component in most major landfills. Hmmm... Video iPod and a $200 savings, or spine-wrenching eco-trash. Your call.)" All great information!

On a personal note, while conducting a new business meeting with a major pharmaceutical company, I recommended the use of iPods for training their widely dispersed (worldwide) sales force. Unfortunately, they were not quite ready to consider such a huge leap (in their opinions) into that arena of training innovation. When I share with them this information from John's article, however, it may be just what they need to hear.


  • Don't completely rely on one or the other. Our country values freedom of choice, and some people would rather continue using binders rather than iPods.

    The Net Generation (20 somethings), as they are called, will most likely favor the use of iPods. The people in the their 30's might prefer to use binders for reading material, iPods for video lectures. In fact, Arizona State University is implementing the use of iPods for delivering lectures to their students.

    By Anonymous Nick, at 5:02 PM EDT  

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