How might learning look in the future? And how will modern technologies help? Jonathan Sierck, co-founder and CEO of 361 Extended Reality, helped us learn more in his answers to our seven questions.
1. Who are you and what do you do? Please briefly introduce yourselves and your business!
We are Jonathan Sierck, Vanessa Hensel, Jonas Geisler, Thomas Foj, Anne Koark, Kathrin Mann and Daniel Sierck from 361 Extended Reality.
361 Extended Reality Digital Learning Experiences offers companies a new type of learning through virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR) and machine learning (ML). We believe that effective learning is the key to success in the quickly changing digital world. With that in mind, we create personalized learning experiences that help people and companies understand changes and react to them appropriately.
With assistance from new technologies such as VR, AR and ML, we combine proven teaching strategies with engaging concepts. In collaboration with world renowned learning and domain experts, we develop talent development products for companies that focus on the following topics: onboarding and employer branding, global strategies, digital competence, leadership and management skills and immersive diversity. Our goal is to create learning solutions for companies to attract new talent and retain exceptional employees — in other words, to appeal to Generation Z without excluding Generations X and Y.
361 Extended Reality: Learning “anytime and anywhere”
2. But that’s nothing out of the box!
Of course it’s been possible for centuries to learn “anytime and anywhere” from blackboards and books. Egyptian papyrus scrolls already existed in the third century BCE. More modern methods such as online learning and e-learning have refined the art of learning anywhere and at anytime, but have still not managed to eliminate distractions in the learner’s surroundings that can significantly compromise their potential learning retention.
In contrast, immersive learning makes it possible to be diversion-free in a 360 degree, protected space and to stimulate the synapses of experience with interaction and game elements. The capacity for remembering is higher than with conventional learning methods and several studies have already demonstrated that empathy is also trained through immersion, which offers significant benefits in areas such as management skills or customer interaction and also for HR-driven processes. What’s important to us is that learning becomes more creative and stimulating and, most importantly, more sustainable and effective for New Work situations.
3. What was your biggest challenge so far?
One of the biggest challenges was getting across that new learning technologies are suitable for more than just learning technical skills. We’re particularly pleased about the fact than an increasing number of companies are extremely interested in workshops for their HR managers and executives where they can find out what is possible, what’s happening in the market and how far along the technologies have come.
4. Now let’s get down to the nitty-gritty: How is business going?
More and more companies are discovering virtual reality and augmented reality for their employer branding processes. Virtual reality learning has also now been accepted in HR development. Something we are very happy about is the keen interest in our virtual reality digitalization knowledge product, which we developed in collaboration with the German Innovation Centre for Industry 4.0 in Regensburg. It uses a matrix to teach employees digitization buzzwords and their impact on business models. We don’t really like to quote figures, but maybe we could put it this way: Each month, we top the results from the previous month. And that on its own is already a positive sign.
“A unique symbiosis”
5. What does Munich mean to you?
You often hear “laptops and lederhosen” when talking about Munich. But Munich means a lot more than that to us. Munich offers a unique symbiosis as an innovation nest with recreational value. The startup scene is big, but Munich is also very international. A lot of world famous companies are located here. That makes it easy to make contact with the entire world, which of course is optimal for companies and also for liberal minded individuals, as we all are. And with all of that so close to the mountains and lakes — what more could you want? For us as a team, Munich will always be the city where our idea, its implementation and our collaboration as a team came to be.
The path to becoming a unicorn: Hard work and positive thinking
6. How will your startup become the next unicorn? Or will we be seeing you at an Epic Fail Night soon?
With a combination of a passion for what we do and a brilliant product and also through continuous learning from our network, from our customers and from each other. Of course, the following is also always needed: hard work, managing numbers and longevity. But more than anything, it’s our strong team spirit, which has already gotten us this far, and we know we can absolutely count on each other.
7. Isar River or the English Garden?
The English Garden of course! Since some of us swim in the Eisbach before work each day, we couldn’t answer any other way!