You have a busy schedule.
Maybe you have a chaotic work environment.
Nonetheless, you’re the one responsible for your organization's learning and talent programs.
Learning and development (L&D) is about developing your people. Since you invest time and effort into your program, you want to see tangible results. And so does management.
But what if your training budget is scrutinized at every turn? What if you’re doing your best but can’t show it’s making a difference?
How do you excel as a L&D professional when you’re frustrated and maybe even a bit burned out?
The answer may lie in the problem itself.
But make no mistake about it…
Even If You ARE Smart...
To foster a learning culture, you have to first win the hearts of the larger workforce.
By being interesting, vital, and key to the organization's success.
Let’s face it. L&D can deliver significant business results. But only if everyone understands part of their job is to be learning non-stop and applying it faster than the competition.
But it’s all up to you.
One of the pitfalls of being a training specialist for such a long time is that it’s easy to become apathetic.
After all, you’re smart. You’re good at what you do. And you want to help others become good also. But it feels almost impossible to make headway sharing that knowledge, skills and wisdom across the organization.
But you know what?
All you need is some inspiration.
Educating yourself about the art and science of L&D is not only part of your job as a successful sales professional. It’s also the fastest way to glean new ideas and get inspired.
So, before you bury your head in the sand or hide in the closest available conference room check out these exciting tidbits about learning and development.
9 Eye-opening L&D Facts
Here are nine learning and development facts you may not have been aware of.
- Coaching is hot: When it comes to training in the workplace, different learning strategies fall in and out of vogue. What’s popular now? According to the annual Corporate Learning Priorities Survey of 368 executives from 39 countries, coaching and peer-to-peer activities are the two most popular methods of learning among executives and senior management.
- Investing in people is profitable: Think talent management and L&D are mere buzzwords? Think again. HR analytics expert Laurie Bassi and a partner started an investment firm that bought stocks in companies that invest heavily in employee training. The results? Their investments returned 24 percent a year and beat the S&P by four percentage points. That lends a lot of credibility to Bassi’s idea that training investments help to determine stock price performance.
- Doing ‘more with less’ is really a thing: Time and again, business leaders talk about skill shortages and talent gaps, yet they want better results with fewer L&D staff. Guess what? Bersin & Associates found that effective programs have less L&D staff but spend more than $200 more per learner compared to the national average. This is because “they are more efficient, effective, and aligned with the business.”
- It’s easier than you thought to justify your training budget: Historically, it’s been a fight to show employee learning and development produces tangible results. You know that L&D isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. But now you can measure L&D’s impact in financial terms. Think about it: Can you show a correlation between training expenditures per employee and your firm’s customer retention rates? Can you show how learning initiatives delivered significant business results? If not, don’t worry. Use Fact #5 to bolster your case.
- L&D helps with attraction and retention: A learning culture makes for a happier workplace. Consider: 40% of employees who receive poor job training leave their positions within the first year. And according to CED Magazine, “Seven in 10 respondents say job-related training and development opportunities impact their decision to stay with a company.” The cost of hiring and training an employee is a quantifiable number. Use bottom line figures to build a business case for L&D.
- The measurement process doesn’t have to be difficult: If you’re struggling with monitoring and reporting on training in your workplace, you’re not alone. But measuring the impact of learning and development doesn't have to be hard. Even a simple a measurement strategy can help. According to CLO, we’re talking about “one page for a small organization or several pages for a large organization.” You can even use one of these evaluation models.
- Money doesn’t matter: You can bring value to your organization through L&D without additional budget. Don’t think so? Check out what some of your peers are doing in this CLO magazine article by Jim and Wendy Kirkpatrick.
- Sales coaching and training can pay off in spades: If you’re responsible for training salespeople, you may be shocked to discover just how much. According to the AG Survey of Sales Effectiveness, sales reps who received medium to high amounts of coaching and training have larger deal sizes and better sales performance. They also spend more time on strategic activities.
- There’s no such thing as a “best” learning style: In fact, according to Dr. Ben Ambridge, senior lecturer in psychology at the University of Liverpool and author of Psy-Q, “Learning styles are made up and are not supported by scientific evidence. So we know this because in tightly controlled experimental studies, when learners are given material to learn either in their preferred style or an opposite style, it makes no difference at all to the amount of information that they retain.” Instead, he argues, “the best presentation format depends not on you, but on what you're trying to learn.”
L&D professionals make valuable contributions to their organizations every day. Hopefully, these nine facts helped put things in perspective.
Did you find any of them useful? Leave a comment and let me know.
Image Credit: herval