You’ve heard the saying “Never stop learning”. Today, this adage is particularly meaningful as our technological, political, and business environments rapidly change and evolve, meaning we are now conducting our work in new ways. But does your organization have a learning culture?
To keep abreast of these changes and ensure your business is flexible and adaptable, you need to foster and encourage a learning culture within your organization. Providing your biggest asset -your people- with training, development, and career pathways could also result in a happier, more-productive workplace and save financial resources spent on managing turnover.
Why Your Organization Needs a Learning Culture
But wait, there’s more! At PulseLearning we always remind our clients that a learning culture:
1. Builds sustainable engagement.
The 2012 Towers Watson Global Workforce Study found that almost 6 in 10 companies reported difficulty retaining critical skill employees, and around the same number have difficulty retaining high potential employees and top performers. Why? Because of disengagement.
The study found that sustainable engagement is closely related to the nature and quality of your employees’ experience on the job. Engagement develops as part of an organization’s culture and work environment. It must be created and continually nurtured through a focus on training, performance management, communication, and visible leadership.
2. Encourages problem solving.
“Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime”.
This quirky proverb tells us it is more worthwhile to teach someone to do something than to do it for them. It looks like the person responsible for this pearl of wisdom knew the value of a learning culture.
Through teaching skills and facilitating learning in your workplace, you are continually adding value to your employees by increasing their skills sets. Encouraging people to seek answers creates a problem-solving mentality rather than relying on others for solutions. Even better, a problem solving mindset helps people make good job-related decisions.
3. Responds to technology.
Advances in technology are pushing the need for a new skill set. The Global Talent 2021 study conducted by Oxford Economics identifies several competencies that will be in high demand within the next decade.
- These skills include:
- Digital skills for working remotely and utilizing social media.
- Agile thinking for dealing with complexity and ambiguity.
- Interpersonal skills for effective physical and virtual collaboration.
- Global operating ability for managing diverse groups of people, understanding international markets, and acting with cultural sensitivity.
Moving forward, it will be important to provide training and encourage your people to learn about these new skills to ensure their productivity and effectiveness remain stable as technology continually changes the workplace.
4. Increases employee retention.
Five key drivers for attracting and retaining employees were identified in the 2012 Towers Watson Global Workforce Study. Career advancement opportunities were ranked in third place and learning and development opportunities in fifth place.
Of those surveyed, 41% also said they would have to take a job elsewhere to advance their career. For employers, the message is clear: “I prefer to be employed and highly engaged here, but I need to see evidence that I can grow my skills and career”. An effective way to provide that evidence is precisely through well-defined and communicated career paths, skill training, and strong and effective leadership.
For sustainable success, it looks like all organizations need to bring on that learning culture.