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Have a strategy to win. Don't gamble on the outcome

Updated: Jun 29, 2020

Create new learning outcomes and pathways - focus on Skills and individual capabilities. A new pathway that engages deeply with the learner. This new solution must augment the business with skills and skill analysis capability at entirely new levels.

A strategy to engage Learning with Skills with Business Planning and Strategies
Focus on Skills. Align Skills with the Strategy

Learning can be the business driver to win. It needs careful planning, engagement and deep involvement with the learners.

Most of all it needs careful alignment. Engage the Innovators on the team. Get full alignment between the Skills you have. The Skills you need. Gambling it won't change, or your business won't be disrupted isn't a safe bet.

Then Alignment of the skills with the business strategy to win.

It is imperative that business can use learning, and learners can use learning to fine tune and target their personal and business resources, add skills and close skills gaps. Move into any new direction the business takes. This must be achieved with total speed. Any impediment to this progression, is just that – in the way.

Is this achieved by replacing or updating the existing LMS? No I don't think so, the collective and rapidly growing global evidence suggests, it needs to be broad based - serving specific content to each user. Rare to have the capacity and ability to create and manage that level of content - one that has the learner at the center, and skills as the core focus.

This new learning ecosystem is a ‘close coupled group of learning technologies’ that rethinks the role and place of the Learning process in any business.

This new learning ecosystem is a 'Convergence of learning Technologies' supporting Formal and Informal learning. Job Training. Skills, Internal employee Mobility, Up-skill and Re-skill. Career development. Employee self service learning.

In short, our current learners are turning and walking away from old outdated learning (LMS) environments.

Heading instead to new tools that are learner-centric. These tools sit at the learner interface level. They are simple to understand, easy to use, and become a daily learning habit. Work with these tools to build a learning culture.

This is a fully integrated learning environment the key component of the Learning Ecosystem serving the 'in context', right content for each Skill through self navigated Learning Pathways chosen by each learner. Adding the key element of social learning. Follow Thought Leaders, Subject Matter Experts, Groups, Role Plans to generate learning directions, uncover career options, identify skill gaps.

Curation becomes a key task for L&D, to ensure the pathways and roles include the appropriate internal & LMS content as required.

Add to that the global resources of learning content, podcasts, videos, posts, articles, publications and books. A vast array of free and subscription learning content - you now have a deep well of incredible learning potential, to be drawn on - based on Skills, Roles, Pathways chosen by the learner - augmented by Corporate internal learning content.

The major surprise outcome for most businesses is the increase in the consumption and completion of Corporate LMS (curation is the key here) content and courses - when placed into this learner owned and self-driven learning cycle.

The Learning Ecosystem is not a single product, but a cohesive group of learning technologies across your business including local, global, subscription and free content.

Fully integrated Ecosystem with 'everyone connected to everything'. Takes a new stance in the world of learning.

This inclusion list is key, these are the ‘must haves’ for the closely coupled and integrated learning resources that form the Learning Ecosystem.

The benefit of this approach takes a unique learner centric path to Skills Acquisition - recommending, adding and sourcing relevant learning content from a variety of resources both your own, free and paid.

The list of new learning technologies above, is not long. The real key to that list, is the inherent flexibility of those technologies. Combined, they provide the organisation, and crucially the individual, a new world of learning.

The real notion seems to apply at this point – ‘is that, learning will be something your teams will 'just do’. It will fall back in the consciousness or awareness of day to day work processes. And enter the state of 'Learning In the Flow of Work'.

Those new ways to deliver learning are ‘enabled to emerge’ by the integrated learning technologies approach. Creating new ways to collectively analyse where and what learning was taken, how & when that learning was completed.

Complex learning handled across multiple touch points and events – rather than the one-time hit of, ‘attend this long course approach'

One thing emerges, the L&D team capability must evolve. This is a plan to deepen their personal and L&D teams value proposition to the Business and core strategies - the 'Journey to the Center of The Business - I think I'll call this the 'Jules Strategy' (with thanks to Jules Verne).

For too long, Learning and Development teams have lived on the periphery of a Corporate entity, the new world of work and learning technology, has them front and center. At the core of the strategy looking out, towards the current skills needed by the employees to help business win.

This is a plan to move a square or two towards the center of the business, engaging directly with Strategy owners, assisting and supporting those strategies with Pathways to execution across the Business.

It means that analysis of learning, business outcomes, skills, is key to understanding if the Business strategy is appropriate, is understood, and is being executed. Export all that rich data into your chosen BI tool-set, remembering this is real data, so extrapolations are no longer hypothetical.

This Learning ecosystem approach with a focus on Skills. Places in the Leadership hands - comprehensive data on Skills in the business. Knowledge of the resources you have. What Skills you have access to, and What level those Skills are.

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John Driscoll


+61 (0)8 8311 3713

3 55 Gawler Place | Adelaide | South Australia | SA 5214

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