Training and Education: Are They The Same Thing?

I’ve heard people say ‘training is for dogs, education is for people.‘ While I think my dogs would be fine with this statement, I’m not.

What is the definition of training? What’s the definition of education? Are they interchangeable like many people exercise them to seemingly be? Or are they in fact different?

Mirriam (Webster) tells us this:


: the action or process of teaching someone especially in a school, college, or university

: the knowledge, skill, and understanding that you get from attending a school, college, or university

: a field of study that deals with the methods and problems of teaching


: a process by which someone is taught the skills that are needed for an art, profession, or job

: the process by which an athlete prepares for competition by exercising, practicing, etc.

Are these people being educated or in training?

Are these people being educated or in training?

I agree with Mirriam. Me thinks they are different…and yet we do use them interchangeably. Why is that? Perhaps because no one has put any sort of grounding appendage down firmly to state “this is only what education can be, this is absolutely what training is.”

In a way it doesn’t matter. In another way it does. The Power Of Words does make it matter.

As a professional educator and trainer, I want to know the difference. It alters and guides my perspective, goals, and tactics to accomplishment. Having just given another workshop on the Power Of Words, I know in fact that they do differ and the difference is important and distinct however seemingly innocuous or subtle. The difference is still there. Otherwise they’d share the same exact definition. 

Cheers to education and training. Employ them both as tools and partners for success.

p.s. Here’s a thoughtful video about the power of words

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Staying At The Top Of Your Field

Staying at the top of your field of work means continual education. Education comes in many shapes and forms, some very easy to identify and some more ethereal.

Lisa leading her talk at SBDC, October 2014.

Lisa leading her talk at SBDC, October 2014.

Case in point: I went to a marketing workshop a few weeks back hosted by the Small Business Development Center, Medford OR. They’d brought in a national presenter who gave us an hour’s worth of Great Stuff.

Lisa Manyon, Write On Creative, shared her insights on Marketing Messages with Integrity and Messages That Matter. A few things I really appreciated about her talk were a positive can-do message and audience participatory style.

Much of long-lasting learning is hands on – at a minimum: brains on. In person, butts in seats, get up and move, talk, and in general participate. Your learning is your responsibility.

I’d invite you to look for specialists like Lisa. She’s competent, real, and helpful. Pros are always worth the attention and investment – note: Always interview your potential pros. A short (15 minute) exploratory meeting is the best first step after you’ve researched a bit and narrowed your choices.


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ROL: Return on Learning

There are gobs of acronyms – an infinite variety available worldwide. ROI, CRM, RFP, B2B, B2C, EBITDA, TQM, P&L….and the list goes on. I dare say it’d be more accurate to call them acornums, since talking with them and listening to others talk about them sometimes makes my mind go num.

All that aside, ROL is a newer one to me, shared by my wise and insightful frolleague, Mike. He’s one of those generous sorts who has freely given of his time and brain the entire time we’ve known each other. My ROL from him is sky-high! And what he’s helped me learn continues to have positive residual effects.

In return, pun intended, I try my best to give a ROL to him. The givers gain only works when all involved parties are invested in the joy and altruism of the gain by giving and therefore the cycle is perpetuated. Giving to takers doesn’t work.

Books = one way to amp up your ROL

Books = one way to amp up your ROL

How does this relate to WEB, you may (or may not) be asking?

ROL is in everything we do. Return on education from the distributor to the retailer, from the brewer to the distributor, from the retailer to the consumer, from consumer to brewery…..and every other possible combination will both allow a reaping of rewards and a receiving of enlightenment.

Return On Learning starts with you and me. What do I have that I can share with you to help you learn? What do you have that you can give me to help me learn?

I’m a firm believer that education and learning changes the world. Love and money come and go. Education is forever.

ROL. When it’s working right, it’s the best merry-go-round around.

p.s. Here’s a funny list of, well, funny slightly ridiculous acronyms

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Continental Travel For Beer

The distinct pleasure of traveling across this amazing continent has created highlights of my year. We do a good deal of travel overall for business, my friends and colleagues remind me often, and it’s usually productive, fun and tasty.

Jeremy Parsons & Ginger at TFOB, 2013

Jeremy Parsons & Ginger at TFOB, 2013

This year so far I’ve been invited to present at the Toronto’s Festival of Beers (July), Toronto, Ontario, Canada where I have the honor of being the first American to take the Grilling Tent Stage. A Cooking With Beer session was great fun – terrific hosts, fun guests, and generous sponsors.

I’ve also had the honor of being invited to the Congreso Cerveza Mexico/Mexican Brewing Congress, Mexico City, Mexico (early September). Entrusted with judging beer and also given the opportunity to present an educational session to my Mexican colleagues on Women + Beer, I can tell you it’s an exciting time for all!

Beer is testimony that both women and beer are everywhere (we’ve verified that), passionate folks of all walks are interested in beer, and that these aforementioned people are all over the globe.

Jay (SSSteiner) & Jose (Propaganda Brewing) in Mexico City

Jay (SSSteiner) & Jose (Propaganda Brewing) in Mexico City

When we present, no matter the location, we work hard and smart to make sure the fit of the content and requested message delivered best fits the audience and goals. Knowing much less about Canada and Mexico to me is not a disadvantage. It’s the chance to ask people who I get to meet and work with lots of questions. An open mind and smile go a long way towards diplomacy and that’s what we’re after.

I’d encourage everyone who’s interested in beer to take a global look. Yes, support local. Do you know where all the ingredients come from in that beer (or other local product)? Sometimes everything’s sourced close by – though almost nothing is in a vacuum is using resources that are non-local. Yes, support global. It’s always been a global economy – the idea of “local” is not new. It’s recycled. If you like salt, nutmeg, or coffee you support a global economy. And that’s okay.

The new perspective I now have from these two visits has enormously broadened my knowledge and what I can share forward. As an educator, that’s really important to me. Education changes the world for the better and these fine folks (my hosts) found mutual value in working together as well.

Finding a balance is somewhat reliant on taking a wide view. Take it, often, and share it with others. There are remarkable people everywhere. And I can’t wait to meet more!

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Beer Workshops Enhance Culinary Festivals

What a flavorful time! Last weekend we conducted workshops focused on beer at a local culinary festival. It’s a terrific opportunity to bring beer to life and we poured it on.

What makes workshops a success?

1. Guests. When sign up is optional and you have to pay for it, buy in is more proactive. We had the pleasure of having some repeat guests Sunday that has also attended the workshop Saturday. All the guests, one time or repeat, were engaged, curious and fun loving.

2. Host. The host and sponsor, Standing Stone Brewing Company, was gracious and accommodating. Rachel, Events Coordinator, is always a pleasure to work with and the side room where we had the events is cozy and bright.

3. Menu. Beer on Saturday, Beer and Food on Sunday. The brewer at SSBC is highly focused on cleanliness and sanitation, leading to delicious quality beer. The paired foods matched nicely from the brewpub kitchen and we’re nicely presented.

The local Chamber is the organizing body and they did a thorough job of taking care of reservations, fees, advertising, marketing and the actual Festival location and logistics. Kelsey, our primary contact, was on top of details, checked in a few times during the fest, followed up on the workshops and was easily available from the beginning conversation to the end of the event. This is key: have someone who has experience do the organizing.

Here are the menus we enjoyed:

  •     Mmmmm! Ahhhhh! Learning to Smell & Taste Your Beer Saturday 11/3/12: Wildcraft (special batch), Galaxy (seasonal), Double India Pale Ale/IPA (house), and Stout (house)
  •     What A Pair! Learning to Pair Beer & Food Together Sunday 11/4/12:
  •     Double IPA with Crater Lake Blue Cheese, fresh red pears, and light vinegar base purple coleslaw
  •     Oktoberfest (seasonal) and Amber (house) with Bratwurst and braised vegetables
  •     I Love Oregon (house) with New England Clam Chowder
  •     Wildcraft Ale with Stir Crazy chocolate cake, whipped cream and drizzle

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31 Facets of Women & Beer: Facet #14

We’ve talked about the next 3 facets several times. We’ll hit them again since they are the only universal commonalities WEB has isolated per our research* thus far (*qualitative, psychographic research).

Facet #14 is that women want education with their beer.

Education is beer mission critical

Education for women on their beer is critical.

  1. An educated consumer is a consumer any business wants, especially when it comes to a ‘new’ kind of consumer – one previously either totally unfamiliar with the brand or product category, or simply one that has not been included in the conversation (women fit both here).
  2. An educated seller is what the female consumer wants, right Sam? I’ll answer that slightly rhetorical yet absolutely true statement. YES. Women want sellers of goods and services to know what the heck they are talking about. They want honesty and tact, diplomacy and truth.
  3. Offering women’s only beer education is powerful for women and for sellers, be they breweries, distributors, or retailers. Agree with it or not, it’s a proven fact that single gender groups learn differently if not more effectively in single gender settings. In fact we’re not even asking you to like it – we’re telling you it’s so. 

Education is mission critical. You have loads of ideas from this site alone. Now go do something with this information. Women everywhere will thank you with their wallets.

31 Facets of Women & Beer Series starts here.

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How Do You Get Your Information?

Where do you search, who do you ask, and what do you seek out?

If you’re a beer oriented business, we offer a monthly Professional Mem(beer)ship subscription. It’s a paid service designed to provide exclusive research and education based information about women and their relationship with beer. With multiple consistent subject categories like Access to Research Data, Training and Education, and Consumer Profiles. The value of the newsletter is in the acting upon it for increased engagement of the female beer consumer and buyer – and you can do just that with this subscribed information.

If you’re a beer consumer, we offer a monthly Consumer Mem(beer)ship subscription. It’s full of ideas, suggestions and events to enhance your beer education for improved quality of life and enjoyment. We offer Professional Profiles, Recipes, Upcoming Events, and Beer & Food Menus. It’s a treasure trove of singular beer consumer information for you to use and enjoy.

If you’re a member of beer media and press, you can consider the combination of the above. We call is the Pro-Sumer – it’s a paid subscription which gets you both monthly issues to read and learn from. For those who want a look into the consumer and into the professional world, this combination is the answer. Press and media, writers and journalists of all walks (we include bloggers here) can find news and plentiful story topics.

All three of these can be found on our Mem(beer)ships page. Suffice it to say it’s one avenue for WEB to educate those who are actively interested in learning about women and beer, beer and finding news to write about. We thank those current subscription holders and look forward to welcoming more each month.

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A Yummy Grand (Teton) Saison

I’m not a beer reviewer. I am a beer educator and lover and the good folks at Grand Teton Brewing are kind enough to share their upcoming beers with WEB. The latest is The Grand Saison Farmhouse Ale.

We opened this bottle of liquid summer love before savoring a meal last week. Or should I say we opened the bottle to savor the beer before we enjoyed a meal last week…either way, it was a delightful beer.

The Grand Saison Farmhouse Ale is for sure ample in its giving of flavors. Full medium bodied with really nicely balanced fruitiness to pair with foods and to most certainly stand on its own solo.

The gorgeous golden egg yolk like color was lovely in the glass and evervescent which lent a nice zest complement to the beer itself. I agree with the phrase in their release info “pairs well with an astonishing variety of foods.” I found myself thinking  – ‘Ooo! what if I had X to go with this…or Y…’

Another thing I like about Grand Teton’s releases is that they come with great information. Information is the essential education tool in order to get more people into craft beer. The Saison style seems to be one that is lesser known or understood to consumers, starting with the proper pronunciation. WEB uses the accompanying info at meet ups and events for the consumers (and therefore the brewers) benefit.

I’d for sure seek this out and drink (and recommend it) again. Many thank GTBC for sharing your passion. We’ll be sure to tell others about it. Women everywhere – as well as men – will love it!

Happy Memorial Day!!

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Thinking of Beer and Food Together

Do your female beer customers know that beer and food go together? That they can complement and contrast? That it’s an easy thing to do, that they can pair beer and food with equal success ‘out’ and at home, economically or splurging?

Extolling beer and food together, highlighting and teaching flavor complementation and pairing will be enormously gratifying and will also help grow your sales.

Even if you think the beer dinner is (almost, maybe getting) passe, be sure to educate your staff and push that education forward to your female customers. All of them surely don’t know about the incredible diversity of the wonderful world of beer coupled with the fabulous universe of foods. And everyone can keep learning, no matter how much they may or may not know right now.

It’s a constant and tasty adventure – invite them all in to partake!

Here’s a video clip of WEB talking about pairing beer and food.

Educating consumers is critical to making your beer that you love and care about so much become that embedded in their thinking with food as well. Educating female consumers is even more earth shattering since they’ve been so long left out of the beer conversation (whether unintentional or not) AND they influence 80% of purchases across the board.

Women are viral sharers. When it comes to food here’s where the three – women, beer and food – combine. Women, beer & food. Stir, serve, repeat, reap.

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Introducing: CAMFA

CAMFA is a concept that Women Enjoying Beer has developed to help beer businesses further beer education with consumers and staff.

Take a look at this video for a introduction to what CAMFA is all about.

CAMFA: C = Color, A = Aroma, M = Mouthfeel, F = Flavor, A = Alcohol

CAMFA will help more consumers learn some basics about their beer and training and education professionals about helping consumers understand more about their beer.And that’s good for everyone.

Call on WEB to come provide this kind of training to help grow your business.

videography by Mike Sansone

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Value For Female Beer Consumers

All value, all the time.

Wouldn’t that be a dream channel for real life?

All value, all the time

Well, if you’re in the beer business, you can make this a reality and attract millions more consumers. Millions seems to lofty? Consider even dozens or hundreds more consumers would make a difference.

How? By properly courting the female consumer.

Let me tell you about value for the female consumer.

Value for women includes:

  • Time value otherwise known as the experience. If they are going to take the time to do something, they want it to be worth while.
  • Enjoyment value. They want the involvement to be enjoyable.
  • Educational value. Women like to and want to learn. A better educated consumer is a great thing for the beer community too.
  • Dollar value. Be it $8 for a six pack of canned beer they want or $22 for a dinner table bottle of special beer they want to share (like yummy Bruery Beers). Whatever the price tag, it’s not the low or high of the actual dollar – it’s how much it’s worth to them.


One of the top three things women consider in their relationship to beer. Drink that up.

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Gems Among The Blather

p1040462In reading through comments (posted at the time) per this story per the 2.11.10 Women Enjoying Beer event, I’m reminded once again that we have free speech in this country. And I’m very grateful for it.

I’m grateful for the comments from people who are understanding what we’re working towards and supportive. And I’m grateful for comments by people who clearly don’t ‘get it.’

Why, you may wonder?

Because people that are uninformed and off base, people who don’t try to figure out what’s what and just spout to crow, end up making themselves look just that – uneducated.

The first few times I heard some comments that made me bristle, I thought – what am I not doing right? How am I missing the message? How can I deliver it better to hit their mark?

You know what? Part of the onus in any two way conversation is on both parties.

You have to educate yourself before you form opinions.

So – to those of you who read and understand that WEB is not about gender – it’s about opportunity and education, I thank you. For those of you who think it’s some flaming feminist whatever, educate yourself.

It’s insulting to only you in the long run if you don’t make the effort to learn how things work.

Bring it on.

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Last night 19 women came together at Snake River for a Women & Beer event. They crammed the room full because they were interested in hearing about beer, talking about it and enoying others’ company.

p1020853We discussed history of women in beer, taste palates, how the micro movement has been a very good thing for craft brewing, how I got where I am (poster child story) and a ton more. Oh – and the tasting was big education for many.

The cozy room SRB provided, the 3 – 5 ounce pours of beer, the interest and then the questions….Questions generally start coming about half to two-thirds of the way into an event. The questions are really engaging, indicate the intelliegence of the female beer drinker and are great fodder for discussion. Plus it helps me continue to learn more so I can better serve.

Last nights group definitely gave me some more good things to think about and educate myself in. Just how I like it.

So cheers to Lenore, Ali, Tori, Jill, Jackie, Ashley and all the others. You made the evening great. As I have always said, the guests make the party.

I’d wager that the patrons who were present last night (everyone) will be trying more different beer from now on.

Thank you for the opportunity to spend upwards of two and a half hours together (originally slated for one and half!).

Thanks to Snake River – Chris for inviting me in and Ali, Sarah and the entire crew for being game and having fun with it. It was indeed my pleasure. Be very glad to come back to Jackson anytime. Preferably when there’s snow on the ground…or when it’s warm…or….

To you readers (brewers and consumer alike) – this is an excellent example of how Women Enjoying Beer educates, informs, provides a forum for discussion, empowers, and in general has a great time authentically and accurately serving the female beer consumer. Call upon me when I may be of service.

All for the love of beer.

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Parke It

Enlightened folks are numerous…at the same time, unenlightened folks are just as numerous.

If you’re a brewery or brewer,

  • How do you go about enlightening consumers?
  • How do you teach them, offer them education to enjoy your beers & learn about them?
  • Appreciate them in moderation?
  • Come back for more?
  • Spread the word?

One enlightened folk who I really like is Steve Parkes. Not only does he have a great smile and common sense, he’s sharp, tuned in and switched on to the relationship of women and beer.

“There’s been a lot of talk over the years I’ve been in the industry (26 and counting) about how to lure women into the fold of regular beer drinkers… Of course my wife enjoys beer but she knows exactly what she likes and is not likely to fall for gimmicks.”

Gimmicks be damned. It’s not about gimmicks. It’s about authenticity and accuracy, asking women what they want – just as you’d ask any target market if you know what the heck you’re doing to get the answers you need (not just the ones you want).

Smart women, smart man. I can’t wait to join you both for a beer –


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What Women Want

Since my speciality is authentically and accurately marketing beer to women, I get

Minneapolis Focus Group, May 2009

Minneapolis Focus Group, May 2009

asked over and over “What do women want?”.

While I am unable to answer that question on the big scale, I am able to offer some insight on the female consumer beer front.

So far, I’ve identified over 30 categories, specifically (and growing) that women are talking about in relation to beer. Everything from health & beer (needs a ton of enlightenment) to where women drink to flavor & taste issues.

Get in touch when you want to find out how to better reach the 50.9% of the population that happens to be female.

There’s potential coming out your mash tun.

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Good Example

Here’s a good example of a definition in a website format.

Wrapped Full Sale Session Lager bottles

Wrapped Full Sale Session Lager bottles

Most women in the focus groups I conduct (and I find it’s true with many men as well in conversation) are unfamiliar or unsure of what specific industry terms mean. “Craft”, “microbrewery”, “brew pub” – they all need constant further clarification for the average consumer.

This is not a gender issue – it’s an expert mentality issue. Don’t use jargon. Get out of your expert mentality – you’re selling a product to the average consumer. And like any averages, there are more knowledgeable and less knowledgeable people…aim for the average where definitions are concerned. You’ll never insult someone by offering a definition that is non-condescending. They’ll either confirm they know (which solidifies their enthusiasm) or learn.

Definitions could be used for a solid pre-shift, a fun piece of wall art, or a basis of a contest – “how many can you inform?!”.

Just be sure you do something about it.

Define, educate, improve the customer experience. Everyone reaps the benefits.

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Wine ala Beer

Looking forward to several presentations at the Craft Brewers Conference in a few days.

One tidbit I have already gleaned from the (BA members access only – it pays to be brouwerji-lane-beer-coolersa member) preview to the presentations:

“Wine is not the enemy…”


The Wine industry has much to share in education concerns, getting people to taste and try and then buy. And some wine focused stores could stand a refresher – check out this post.

If you think in context of complementary, instead of competitive, you can get much farther.

Photo courteys of Flickr by Tom GPRecs

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