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How to foster learning in a corporate environment

Patricia Valerio
January 26, 2022

New product lines and world-beating innovations are all well and good but the most important feature of any organisation is its people.

In fact, one can’t thrive without the other. Key to investment in people is a good learning and development (L&D) programme.

Today’s employees consider learning and development a key job attribute. And, these days, according to research from McKinsey, learning contributes to employability and people list “opportunities for learning and development” among the top criteria for joining an organisation.

However, according to research published in the Harvard Business review, 70% of employees report that they don’t have mastery of the skills needed to do their jobs and just 12% of employees apply new skills learned in L&D programs to their jobs.

Embed learning in all areas of the organisation

For a good learning and development programme to work, there have to be several cultural factors in place. The whole organisation must be aligned and there must be a culture of learning from the top down. This might mean stating it clearly in core values or ensuring it’s a key corporate pillar. This means that when important decisions are made, investment in this area will be front of mind.

Personalise learning

We know that work has become more personalised, especially with the effects of the pandemic. There is no one-size-fits all approach to learning and development and the programmes you have in place must reflect this. This means allowing for different starting places, entry requirements and timelines. It could also mean embracing learning opportunities outside of the immediate organisation or that could develop staff into “stealable” candidates. However, research has shown that the more you invest in your staff’s learning and development the more likely they are to stay with you.

Measure and recognise

There’s no point in offering learning and development without knowing why you’re doing it or what you can do to improve. Using a verifiable set of credentials means your staff can track and talk about their progress in a meaningful way and you can monitor their development and the scheme’s efficacy. The data you capture from this will also help you to create more meaningful learning experiences for your workforce and your staff to feel valued and recognised for their efforts.

Give (and receive) feedback

If your workforce is responding well to the learning and development environment, tell them. If they’re not, you wouldn’t hold back. But this feedback works both ways. If it’s not working, let your people tell you why not and change it accordingly. If your staff feel able to contribute to their own learning journey then they’re more likely to be engaged in it and want to do more of it. This could entail setting time aside especially or setting up a formal feedback procedure.

Ultimately, if you want your people to learn and develop in a way that benefits your organisation, you have to create an environment that nurtures a learning culture.

Get in touch with us today to find out how Certify can add value to your L&D programme.

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