This rambling reflection has helped me to realise that effective L&D departments must:
understand the needs of the business in depth and in detail.
create environments, materials and interventions that are based on a solid theoretical understanding of how people learn.
work to ensure that the culture within the organisation becomes more conducive to people sharing, learning and changing
be prepared to use proper educational research methods to evaluate the effectiveness of their interventions.
Thanks for a great show and chance to kick-back and reflect
...So what did I leave pondering on Thursday evening...
- that some corporate learning and development professionals don't consider education to be part of the bigger picture
- that we need to be smarter and more tactical when working in organisations where IT say 'no' to enabling technologies
- that I need to be more savvy with regard to setting out a map for what we could be doing more effectively with what we've already got (and maybe a little bit more)
- that the gap between those who 'get' the new technologies and tools for socialising and communicating, and those who don't, is widening
- that there is still a great desire to measure and evaluate everything and deliver managed, structured courses, whether 'e' or not (is this really ok for the 21st century?)
- that learning continues to be ubiquitous and pervasive (no surprise there) and we should start to enjoy it a little bit more
- that Mark Oelhert showed us a great model for challenging the perceived risks involved with embedding social media into established networks "Think big - start small - move fast"
- do, do, do not talk, talk, talk
I found the conference really useful and have returned to the business buzzing with ideas and thoughts.
a) Since returning I have already been making a lot of noise in our building about social learning and the need to look at our learning culture. As a result of attending the conference I feel that I am able to make a much stronger case now. It's really a case of planting the right seeds in the right places.
b) I have a much better handle on informal learning as a topic. There is just so much that comes under the informal learning banner. What was interesting was the discovery that we already have most of the building blocks in place and it is mainly about developing the right culture to harness and support informal learning in the right way. The big challenge seems to be proving to the bean counters that there is going to be real pay back and that the risks associated with informal learning are more perceived than real.
I'd really hope that we will be able to follow up on some of this in the June conference. I'm particulalrly keen to find out how other people have gone about changing their culture to really make the most about informal learning and how they have set about proving that it is effective - especially ROI.
1. Reducing wasteful training spend - laser focus on business objectives
2. Design matters more than ever
3. All onboard - technology to drive huge savings in induction costs and faster time to competency
4. Social learning is the new black
5. Mobile learning (maybe)
6. Share and save
7. The future is bright