Diane Valenti

Diane Valenti Head ShotI began my career in the field of Talent Development before I even realized it.

Back in college, I loved skiing. Still do. But, since I was paying my own way, there was no way I could afford to go. So, I signed up to be a ski instructor at a small resort about an hour outside of the college town where I lived. Unbeknownst to me at the time, I would pivot from ski instructing to instructional design in just a few short years.

I graduated with a degree in corporate finance and quickly realized that the go-go world of Wall Street wasn’t for me. I wanted to do something that helped people reach their potential.

After hours of library research, informational interviews, and soul searching, I landed on the field of Talent Development. Luckily, I was able to convince my new employer that the skills I had learned as a ski instructor would easily transfer to teaching software. The only problem was that I didn’t know a thing about any of the software I was hired to teach.

Lots of late nights hunched over a keyboard, reading software manuals fixed that problem. But, it also became apparent that I didn’t know much about adult learning or instructional design, either.

So, I went back for my Master’s degree in Education & Human Development at the George Washington University. This was another stroke of luck as the program was one of the top programs in the country.

After I graduated, I moved west and got a job with a cellular telephone company. I had so many ideas about how to make good learning that I wanted to try, though, that consulting seemed like a better fit for me.

Since then I have worked with companies from start ups to Fortune 500s to design and develop blended learning solutions that actually get results.

I have also been active in the Talent Development community as an instructor in the UC Berkeley extension program, guest blogger for ATD, writer of two Infolines, and author of articles in TD, Training, and E-Learning! magazines as well as a book published by Wiley.

In addition, I became a certified project manager so I could better manage my own team. Our biggest project to date had a budget of close to $1,000,000.

By the way, Applied Performance Solutions, Inc. is a c-corporation. So, you don’t need to worry about working with an independent contractor should you want to work with me!

Finally, in the last few years, I experienced the transformational learning power of adventure travel. So, I started a philanthropic adventure travel company called Llama Expeditions. But, that is a story for another day.

So, now you know my story. What’s yours?