Jay Cross

CEO & Chief Unlearning Officer

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Jay Cross is the Johnny Appleseed of informal learning. The Internet Time Alliance, which he chairs, helps corporations and governments use networks to accelerate performance.

Jay has challenged conventional wisdom about how adults learn since designing the first business degree program offered by the University of Phoenix. A champion of informal learning and systems thinking, Jay’s calling is to help people improve their performance on the job and satisfaction in life. He was the first person to use the term eLearning on the web. He literally wrote the book on Informal Learning. His philosophies on the power of informal learning and net-work have fundamentally changed the world of learning in organizations.

Jay Cross is a champion of informal learning and systems thinking. His calling is to help business people improve their performance on the job and satisfaction in life.

Jay is CEO and Chief Unlearning Officer of the Internet Time Alliance, a brain trust of six thought leaders who help companies boost their collective intelligence and profitability through networks.

Jay is a change agent, futurist, speaker, and author whose insights and stories will expand your perspective and enliven your meetings. He distills lessons from cognitive science, social networking, business strategy, futures research, and psychology to boost sales, improve customer service, and spark innovation.

Jay frequently leads workshops and webinars to help corporate teams work smarter. His speaking style is vibrant, energetic, and compelling. Mixing case studies, stories, and actionable recommendations with humor and easy-to-understand language, Jay inspires action.

A Harvard MBA and Princeton undergrad, he has been improving business processes since developing the first business curriculum for the University of Phoenix three decades ago. He is the Johnny Appleseed of informal learning.

Jay covers topics from 50,000 feet to ground level, depending on audience and need. He has spoken with executives, sales managers, entrepreneurs, chief learning officers, sales staff, instructional designers, HR directors, bankers, and academics. He has keynoted conferences the U.S., Canada, Austria, U.K., Germany, Australia, Portugal, Belgium, Monaco, and Abu Dhabi. He travels the world, but increasingly delivers presentations and events virtully over the web.

Jay is the author of Informal LearningRediscovering the Natural Pathways that Inspire Innovation and Performance, The Working Smarter Fieldbook, and Implementing eLearning. Thousands of people read his articles and blog, Internet Time. He has helped Cisco, CIGNA, Eaton, IBM, Service College Canada, Sun, National Australia Bank, Intel, Raytheon, Genentech, Novartis, HP, the CIA, Citibank,  Chase, and others slash time-to-performance.

Jay and his wife Uta live with their miniature long-haired dachshund in the hills of Berkeley, California.

Conversations are the stem cells of learning.
The only metrics that matter are business metrics.
80% of learning is informal; 80% of the money goes to formal.
Work and learning are becoming one and the same.
More happens in the world in one of your minutes than in one of your grandmother’s hours.

Jay talks about unblended learning, emergence, grokking, envisioning, unconferencing, connecting, conversation, community, web2.0 and JDI (just do it). He makes the point that classes are dead, that every learner needs to cultivate an ecology, share via voicing, communicate using stories and build common text by collaborative editing (wikis). ~ Denham Gray

Jay provides an important challenge for us all – to move our focus from the classroom to the workplace, and, in doing so, reframe what we do in ways that much more closely reflect how people actually learn and perform on the job. ~ Marc Rosenberg

Jay is one of the most courageous personalities I’ve ever encountered, especially in a field where self-interested cowardice is pretty much the rule. His clarity of vision on all things relating to learning in the corporate world is only matched by his commitment to helping others make it work. He cuts through nonsense with incredible speed and precision. Is Jay a revolutionary? Only in his long-term vision. For the rest his focus is on the nuts and bolts of human relations, which is what transfer and development of knowledge is all about. ~ Peter Isackson

Jay is an evangelist of the intelligent application of new learning methods and tools, and he helps organizations improve the performance of their people by speeding up their learning. Jay is also an absolutely great presenter, a good writer, and a sharp mind to work with. ~ Robin Good

Take a mega-high IQ, some Berkeley attitude, a dose of e-learning curiosity and you get Jay Cross. For opinion and analysis, nothing is as interesting or fun as Jay’s blog. ~ Kevin Kruse

Jay Cross, among just a few others, gives me the impetus to keep on moving ahead into uncharted territory. ~ Michael Hotrum

You have been a tremendous help shaping our vision for the future of Learning at Intel. I was amazed at the way you engaged with us, brainstormed with us, and then created a presentation within hours, to reflect back our current and future situations. Your individual consultations and idea swap-meets get the creative brainstorming going and have helped us dream big and think beyond the norm. I love that you are able to peel away the layers of “business as usual” to see what’s really been happening all along. Even more than that, you’ve been able to consult with our learning leaders and articulate the true value of our shifting landscape (or learnscape!). As we put a plan in place for next year, it’s been a big help to look back on our time with you and identify some of our critical next steps. ~ Allison Anderson

Hi there Jay, I feel compelled to put fingers to keyboard as I’m up to Chapter 6 of Informal Learning and am absolutely bowled over by your work. I’m heading up a newly formed Learning Solutions team and we are keen to tranform ourselves from the formal to informal ‘space’. You have articulated so beautifully what we are trying to achieve, but have struggled to put into words. I feel totally inspired to make this live and breathe in our organisation and am fortunate enough to work with a group of people who I know can make this work. Thank you so much – your insight arrived at just the right time. ~ SL

The key to the 21st Century will be in learning how to leverage informal learning for us all. Jay provides us an evocative roadmap to how we can do this. ~ John Seely Brown

Creative Learning, Lisbon. Nov 2011.

Impact. Apr 2011.

eLearning must be more social. Feb 2009.

Informal Learning. Jan 2007.

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