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It’s all about balance…

4th October 2020

Work hard, play hard. Eat clean and keep lean. Do less, be more.

There’s certainly a balance to be found with how we live our lives given the fast-paced world we are now in; from eating and exercise to work and play. How you arrive at this balance depends on several factors – your lifestyle, career and personal view on what “balanced” means.

A question

What about workplace learning? What “balance” needs to be sought to effectively develop talent? How do you ensure an aligned approach to driving business performance and prioritising your people’s skills, learning and development? Time is no doubt a huge factor and what skills your staff need to hone.

Key statistics

According to LinkedIn’s 2018 Workplace Learning report, the key challenge for talent development is getting employees to make time for learning. 94% of employees would stay at a company longer if it invested in their career. It is alarming to see the key reason employees don’t flourish from L&D is because they don’t have enough time to embrace it.

The same report states savvy talent developers are balancing today’s challenges with tomorrow’s opportunities, with soft skills as the number one training priority. In parallel, given the rise in AI, leadership, communication and collaboration feature as the most important and relevant skills employees want to develop. Talent leaders support this – to plug skills-gaps, retain their staff and stay ahead of their competitors by doing so.

Expert insight

Of those surveyed, 68% of employees prefer to learn at work, 58% prefer to learn at their own pace and 49% want to learn at point of need.

A blended approach to delivering L&D is needed to fulfil these demands; essential soft skills can’t be honed based on “click next” courses via standard e-learning delivery. Face-to face workplace training, a 90-minute bite-size workshop for example, kick-starts your people’s learning with creative and effective activities to motivate and inspire.

That said, opting for face-to-face training to solely deliver your L&D is costly, challenging to manage with multiple teams and not an effective use of staff time. Interactive and engaging virtual training, delivered online, focuses learning in a collaborative environment.  Live immersive training can be delivered easily and effectively using features such as breakout rooms, whiteboards, polls and games.

To balance these two approaches to live delivery, self-directed learning offers training when your people want it – they manage their time, their learning and what they need to learn. Providing them with a reservoir of courses, for example, means they can access the resources they need to hone and enhance their skills at point of need.

Balance is key…

…to delivering effective workplace learning. Carving time for your staff to prioritise their learning must balance with business needs; opportunities for staff development can’t detract from company performance.

Soft skills training isn’t only of importance to employees, it is a priority for L&D teams – to lower attrition rates and stay ahead of the curve. Soft skills training can’t be effectively delivered by e-learning and so a balance of face-to-face training, live, collaborative online delivery and on-demand access to resources provides a successful blended solution. It also meets employee expectation of how they want to learn and develop within the workplace.

Forward-thinking organisations are investing in their people’s careers to ensure they retain a talented workforce and drive business performance. What balance do you want to instil within your workplace? What challenges and opportunities are you facing as a result? Get in touch – maybe we can help.

This post originally appeared on the World of Learning Conference and Exhibition blog to support our attendance at the event in October