Learning & Development’s next BIG STEP….

There’s no doubt about it, we are great at creating content for our learners, we have become experts in finding out what our learners need and delivering it to through one of a myriad of different platforms, from the traditional face-to-face to the modern app on a mobile device.

However, all the research over the last 25 years+ has proven time & again the learning we deliver is not being applied back into the workplace to create the impact we, & our exec team desire. CEO’s have sighted time and again that they wish to create a “learning organisation”, & numerous reports over the last few years have sighted that employees themselves want clear & concise goals, and having the opportunity to develop is a key attraction when looking for a new job.

So it’s time to take the next BIG STEP, perhaps 0.1% are already taking it, but there’s no doubt everyone else needs too, & it will probably make L&D professional feel uncomfortable. So, what is this BIG STEP? Well, it’s simply “letting go”!

Let me explain what I mean. In today’s modern organisation it’s going to become almost impossible to control delivery of all the learning an employee needs, they will simply go & find it themselves & we shouldn’t try to stop them or control this. Yes, there’s still going to be the formal face-to-face course that will require administering, that will always exist in one form or another & will take a blended, spaced learning approach, & there will always be the need for the compliance training to take place. But what will become more important is the ability for L&D professionals to be able to track & monitor as much of the formal and informal learning taking place across the business. This will not only free up valuable time for L&D, but it will give them the opportunity to drive the learning culture and understand what skills will be required in the near future by the organisation in this rapidly changing world. Having the ability understand what is working & what’s not, & to unlock and analyse this new data will make L&D more valuable than ever before.

The surprise is that when we empower learners to do it themselves, give them autonomy to become the masters of their own learning destiny, they will be very happy to take further direction on learning to support their careers. Learning is something we all do very naturally from the second we are born. It’s human nature to want to learn & develop new skills, it’s L&D’s role to support them and make sure the business is rapidly developing its talent. After all, if you don’t another company will!