How do you encourage people to learn at work every day?
“In times of change learners inherit the earth; while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists,” — Eric Hoffer, social philosopher and author.
When you work in a company, change is the only constant and so one has to keep unlearning and relearning in order to keep up with the times. A transformative learning culture yields a lot of benefits which include:
- Increased employee engagement, which has a direct impact on both employee satisfaction and thus job retention, and also customer satisfaction.
- Building a “growing mindset” across the organization yields higher levels of performance, in which people learn from their mistakes and actively seek out challenges.
- This enhances creativity and innovation within the individuals and teams. For this the company has to encourage risk-taking and invite reflection on valuable lessons learnt from both failure and creativity.
- It keeps you keep up pace with the rapid changes in technology, with regard to devices, software and latest trends in social-media outlets.
- It also cultivates leadership and emotional intelligence. Learning is not just required in terms of technological competency, but key “human” soft skills also need to be learnt such as self-control, empathy, fluent communication, conflict resolution, negotiation skills and cultural competency. These can drive measurable benefits throughout the organization.
In fact experts like David Goleman say that emotional intelligence is more important that intelligence quotient for individuals to thrive in an organization these days. And emotional quotient can be learnt, to the extent that it can be improved by up to 40 % in an individual with appropriate interventions.
There are several ways of creating a transformative learning culture:
- You must respect the ever-present nature of learning. In other words learning should not be treated as an event to be scheduled, but rather as a resource to be constantly enhanced.
- Build an environment in which employees feel safe to take risks and possibly make mistakes. At the same time celebrate the learning moments.
- Make learning easily accessible by empowering employees to seek and find their own answers. Neuroscientists say that this type of self-learning is retained far longer than just being told what to do.
- Recognize differences in people: Not every type of learning works for all.
- You could evaluate performance based on learning. New models indicate that measuring learning, along with performance, ultimately increases both.
- Find ways for your employees to learn in a fun manner, for example by reliving aspects of their childhood by playing some interesting games in a modified manner.
Your employees have the potential to grow your organization to the next level, while transforming themselves in the process. A transformative culture of learning helps this to take place faster and with better efficiency.