supporting a learner-led skill development program in a VUCA world

The growing noise around automation is escalating a sense of uncertainty amongst job seekers. According to several recruitment agencies, job security is one of the top concerns of employees. Insights from Randstad Employer Brand Research (REBR) reveal that 45% of people cite stability as a determining factor for job stickiness. The question is: what are organizations doing to enhance the skill sets of their people to help them confidently face evolving requirements?

Today’s connected and empowered employees demand immediate access to learning and information in order to better fulfil their roles. According to a CEB report, 66% of employees expect to learn new information when they need it. Following are four ways organizations can support skill development programs to create a culture of life-long learning, helping employees acquire the knowledge and skills they need to manage the VUCA environment.

Leverage the experience, exposure, education approach: Also called the ‘3 E approach,’ this concept is based on the philosophy of 70:20:10 where people acquire 70% of their knowledge on-the-job, 20% from peers, and 10% through formal learning experiences. Learning leaders need to design skill development programs that have the right mix of these elements. The approach enables organizations to offer continuous learning opportunities that are fully adapted to their employees’ immediate work environment and challenges. Nokia, for instance, has created learning experiences for its leaders that combine real external developments such as AI, cloud, and digitization with internal challenges such as becoming agile and taking risks. Creating a learner ecosystem that enables peer-to-peer learning as well as formal learning can further boost on-the-job learning experiences.

Develop an interventional ecosystem: The Mahindra Group’s Future Leaders Programme (FLP) is a strategic leadership development intervention designed to develop top executives to lead in the future. Participants undergo not just intensive classroom modules but also undertake “discovery visits” to other leading firms and organizations. The teams then research the organizations they visit and interview senior executives to identify best practices and generate insights into their successes and challenges. This approach to learning through self-discovery helps develop a strong leadership suite capable of managing cross-border businesses and comfortably navigating through the VUCA world.

Create a knowledge-sharing organization: As the space between technology and business narrows, there’s a greater need for tech talent to gain a deeper understanding of the world where their technology solutions are applied. Learning leaders can facilitate this synergy and constant knowledge sharing between tech and customer facing groups by simplifying organizational structures and processes. It is impossible to execute things in a vacuum in the world of VUCA. Tech giants like Microsoft are continually advocating the idea of ‘learn-it-all’ as against the ‘know-it-all’ cliché.

Enable learning agility: Agility in learning comes from a sense of inquisitiveness and the spirit of exploring the unknown. ClubMed enables learning agility through simplification - by making it easy for learners to learn continuously using a structured and organized approach in today’s complex environment.  Organizations should cultivate a culture where employees are encouraged to learn from failures as much as they learn from examples of successes. Experimenting, taking risks during the early stages of a project and learning quickly through mistakes are important to drive success in the VUCA world.  

Thriving amidst change requires a learning culture and mindset. In a fast changing world, learning leaders need to work collaboratively with employees to create L&D outcomes aligned with employee’s personal goals as well as business objectives. It’s clear that dynamic learning based on a pull-approach where employees pull down the content that is relevant to their needs is the future of skill development.

Sources
https://www.cebglobal.com/human-resources/developing-the-new-learner.html
https://www.hrdconnect.com/2017/07/19/nokia-outbreak-a-new-way-to-engage-and-learn-for-leaders-and-teams/
http://www.computerworld.in/feature/tech-disruption-has-made-multi-year-strategic-plans-irrelevant-nitin-seth-incedo
http://www.humanresourcesonline.net/exclusive-top-ld-trends-in-2018-from-maxis-unilever-and-more/
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