Have you learned anything new at work lately?
If you’re likely the majority of employees working today, then most likely not. An Accenture survey showed that only 21% of employees acquired new skills through a training program over the last five years.
While many learning initiatives are in place within organizations, which deliver benefits to both individuals and their companies, knowing which courses to take and how impactful they actually are requires more than access, incentives and available time. Companies need to rethink the overall design of their internal education plans to make them more effective and engaging. By socializing the way that knowledge is disseminated throughout an organization, companies are getting all of their stakeholders from management to first year employees.
As companies like Khan Academy, Educreations and Skillshare (among others) continue to remove the barriers to learning by redefining who can be a teacher, and in the process creating greater access to teachers and learning materials, education programs are still faced with finding what will be most impactful for each student. Students are now able to tap into a growing library of courses ranging from academic to entertaining, taught by instructors with a variety of styles, or with a number of innovative learning modules available, they can choose to go the self-directed route. While these programs are changing the world of education, corporate learning and development programs have yet to catch up. They still focus more on the needs of the company – helping employees to progress their skills tied to specific roles or practices – than the individual.
Neiman Marcus’ Learning and development director Keith Meyerson talked with us about the evolution of workplace education programs.
With social learning, if I have a development need or I have a skill gap, instead of just going to an e‑learning course, I now have access to every employee in the company. Any post, any blog, any Wiki, any forum, anything that’s on a social site is now content and it’s searchable. If I have an interest in something, I can find it. Or, if I’m a manager and I want to push out a conversation to my employees or include it as part of onboarding, it’s there.
Below we pulled out recent examples that show how learning and development is being socialized, arming the workforce of the future with the skills and knowledge they need to grow and succeed.
PSFK is asking readers to tell us how you and your co-workers are learning from one another. Drop us a line and tell us what has helped you move ahead in your career or send us a related link of social education in the workplace that you’ve found interesting.
Over the next 4-8 weeks we want to start a conversation around what you see as possible in the Future of Work. Be sure to follow the conversation on PSFK and participate in the daily competitions. Tweet us your ideas to @psfk using #FoW.
Images via Reset SF