How can you develop a learning culture?
How can you develop a learning culture in your organisation?
We know of so many customer stories in which major investments in and/or opportunities for organisational learning remained untapped and simply wasted. Just how many course enrolments, or better, still course completions, where actually made using that annual eLearning content license you purchased last year? The answer is all too often a lot, lot less than was forecast. Here at Course-Source we’ve long recognised these issues and we have sought a simple redress by offering organisations a better way to purchase content with our PAYG packages.
But how can you encourage your people to make more and better use of the learning opportunities you make available to them? Here we will offer you four simple and practical ways that you can do this in any organisation.
Engage your leaders in active sponsorship of your learning endeavours
Leaders should do ‘what it says on the tin’ that is, provide leadership and direction to their teams and people in terms of what is important and why this is so. This is very much the case with organisational learning and development initiatives in which their role is to actively and visibly promote and legitimise the learning explaining benefits to the organisation as well as the WIIFM (‘what’s in it for me?’). This requires learning professionals to invest their time to engage and develop trusted adviser status with their leadership teams and be recognised for delivering positive organisational outcomes through learning. Remember that learning is not the goal, rather it is a means to an end, and the end is performance improvement. Speak this language and your leaders will be more likely to invest the time you need from them.
Offer only relevant and engaging learning content
Ensure that your content library is curated and/or built to offer only content that is directly relevant to your audience and designed with the learner at heart to be interesting, engaging and educational. There is now so much digital learning content available that the problem is more about selection than it is about searching. According to a 2017 US Learning in the Workplace Survey of 548 employed learners, 98% say they consider company-sponsored education important for their professional development; and yet 75% say the training provided is not worth their time to study. Develop your own standard by which you can objectively evaluate a learning programme and only choose content that meets your stringent criteria. At Course-Source we developed the PRAISE method to evaluate eLearning – please feel free to ‘sue and abuse’ this approach if it works for you – read more here.
It is also important that you make it easy and intuitive for learners to access the content – this means paying attention to the LMS (Learning Management System). You don’t need to invest in the most expensive platform packed with features and functionality neither you or your learners will ever use. No, what you need is a simple, easy to use delivery system that enables learners to find what they need and start a course with the minimum number of clicks i.e. go back to ‘grass roots’ when it comes to the LMS and just ensure you have a good delivery system for learning, and that’s all you need.
Communicate, Communicate, Communicate
Your learners are typically time-poor and will have limited memory capacity to remember everything about your learning initiatives. For these reasons you need to ensure you find the right opportunities to maintain their awareness and knowledge of learning on a regular basis and within their normal organisational news feeds. Yes, by all means invest in a high-profile launch communications plan for the right initiatives but don’t expect the fanfare to last and find ways to continually reinforce your messages. Learner success stories are a great opportunity for you to repeat your key messages with a unique slant, utilising the power of peer influence. Make friends with your internal communications team and find ways of tapping into their expertise and audience channels. If your organisation does not have an internal communications team then invest time in learning more about the best practices in this field – these skills are increasingly important for learning professionals and the success of a learning initiative is as dependent on great learner communications as it is great content.
Ensure learning is a continuing journey
The 70:20:10 learning model is well established in the L&D mindset of today. 70:20:10 recognises that effective learning comprises of three learning settings. That is, experiential, social and formal, but not in equal measure. Formal learning is represented as the ratio 10 in the model and indicates its subservience to experiential (70) and social (20) settings. 70:20:10 explicitly recognises is that learning is a continual process that involves experts and experience. Whenever it is in your gift, ensure that your organisation recognises this learning journey and exploit opportunities in the workplace for your learners to practice their learning and learn from good mentors and coaches. Make learning part of the workplace as much [or more] than it is a formalised process managed by L&D.
If you recognise the value of interactive eLearning as part of your learner engagement strategy then why not search our extensive content library to find the right courses for your organisation’s needs?
Remember, that we can deliver any of the courses through your internal LMS, or we can provide you with a dedicated and branded version of our Course-Source LMS, if preferred.