There is no such thing as “one size fits all,” particularly when it comes to training and professional development. The more customized your courses are, the greater the likelihood is that your workers will become and stay engaged in continuous lifelong learning. This, in turn, will help you get the most out of your training investment.
Make It Personal
Creating a culture of ongoing learning and development starts by making it personal and meaningful. This means that “off-the-shelf” programs are not your best bet for meeting the needs of your employees. Start with personalized learning plans, designed for the individual needs and learning styles of each employee. Then tailor and customize your courses to reflect the organizational culture, mission, vision, and values.
Leadership is a skill that can be found at every level of an organization, not just with executives and managers. By developing the leadership capacity of all employees, they will be empowered to engage in problem-solving to find their own answers and direct their own learning. This frees up supervisors and managers to engage in higher level strategic activities, and removes bottlenecks to productivity.
Professional Development for Managers
Managers are the key to promoting a culture of learning in your organization. This means that they will require specific professional development that will give them the skills they need to support training and development, and find ways to engage employees, encourage participation in learning initiatives, and be accountable for following through on learning plans.
Training for HR Professionals
HR professionals will also need specific training on how to measure learning effectiveness, present their case to key decision makers, and ultimately translate their findings into action. They will also need to master a variety of learning modalities, from ILT to digital platforms, and know how to get the most of every form of learning. This will require continuous, lifelong learning.
One company, Ingersoll Rand, co-designs their learning solutions with business leaders. They identify what knowledge and behaviors are necessary to create their desired business goals. From this, instructional designers develop specific learning options, which create higher levels of ownership and relevancy than would have been possible without the involvement of these business leaders. These highly-customized training sessions always have the sponsorship of a senior executive, which ensure business relevance and return on investment.
Investment in Training
The value and relevance of training should not be taken for granted. Developing a case for the return on investment in training is more important than ever. Showing how training improves the business, helps attains goals and objectives, or supports the values and vision of the organization is essential in today’s business climate.