It’s not far-fetched to think that most employees feel like mere cogs in a large machine. Just a name, just a number in a long line of past and future members. Why should they put in more time and effort than is necessary? Why should they be concerned with anything that does not affect their salary and future opportunities?
After a year or more of isolation and reliance on technology’s web of connections, people began prioritizing their comforts, safety, quality of services, and more humanist approach in general. The pandemic may have closed some doors, but it also opened a lot of opportunities—most of which are much more favorable than what most people’s current jobs offer.
These occupations may not have necessarily brought in more profit, but they offered more freedom, benefits, and chances of growth. It led to 2021’s The Great Resignation, in which 4.53 million Americans quit their jobs.
In the wake of this event, businesses set their sights on workplace culture and put more focus on their greatest asset, the employees. This is where workplace learning and development come into play.
Learning and development (L&D) is a human resource responsibility that concerns itself with the personal development of employees in order to achieve optimal performance in the workplace. It is akin to education that goes beyond formal education.
As for the learning part, it involves the acquisition of relevant knowledge, skills, and attitudes. Development, meanwhile, is for the broadening and deepening of knowledge in line with one’s goal to overhaul their attributes to develop a better version of themselves.
Instead of just focusing on the company’s goals, L&D takes account of the employee’s growth and personal goals. That said, why are learning and development important in the workplace? Let’s have a look at some of the most notable reasons.
LinkedIn’s 2022 Workplace Learning Report states that employees are more likely to look for a new job if they feel that their skills of specialization are not being applied in their current job. They want to apply what they know and have a chance to land a higher position.
As an ever evolving process, L&D programs change with every new advancement in knowledge and practices. This progress greatly contributes to how to improve learning and development in the workplace.
While such initiatives may require firms to allot a part of their operational budget for relevant and advanced programs, the benefits of learning and development in the workplace can outweigh these costs in the long run.
Meaningful interactions with the workers is the first step in employee engagement. Cultivating a positive employee job experience can come in the form of learning and development opportunities in the workplace.
Taking part in these programs enriches your staff’s current skills and further integrates them into the company’s culture. This investment in their improvement also raises their interest in the company’s growth alongside their own.
That strengthened connection with the management and company improves the workplace atmosphere and allows for a more cohesive environment. This relationship makes pinpointing strengths and weaknesses much easier. Better communication and awareness of each employee’s situation creates more nuanced solutions should any problems arise.
Stagnation is the enemy of progress, and so is consistent mediocrity and anything lower. How will the company keep up with changing standards and strategies? Are the workers able to fulfill customers’ needs and get favorable feedback?
Offering learning and development practice in the workplace raises overall competency and productivity, raising the company’s standards. It refreshes the staff’s current knowledge, sharpens their current competencies, and access to related programs can pave the way for the development of new skills.
Career development is also a top motivator for employees to learn. As long as it helps them stay up to date in their field, is personalized according to their interests and goals, and helps them achieve their career goals.
Being able to hold on to the staff saves a lot of time and other resources. The overall cost can range from one-half to two times the employee’s annual salary.
Losing a skilled employee is a major loss, not just in terms of financial cost but also in terms of workplace harmony and insider knowledge. It causes a hole in an established social dynamic within the workplace and customers. The loss also takes with it personal knowledge and experience that could have contributed towards solving future problems.
Learning and development programs in the workplace offer a dynamic workplace with a chance for growth and promotion. Employees become more motivated to succeed within the company, filling the upper management with highly skilled employees fully entrenched within the company’s culture.
Of course, the Digital Age requires the majority of people, not just workers, to be at least computer-literate. No matter how modern and up-to-date the technological facilities are, they mean nothing under unskilled hands.
Digital skills go hand-in-hand with marketing strategies as another medium of communication and promotion. Alongside that is the need to keep up with the trends and the younger generation who grew up using this constantly advancing technology.
The ripple effect of workplace learning and development eventually reaches this location. Skilled workers plus exemplary performance equals higher customer satisfaction.
Customers’ needs are being met much faster and with better efficiency, also increasing work productivity. There are far fewer mistakes and stronger established connections between the employees and customers. The positive customer experience encourages continued patronage from the clientele and is subject to recommendations towards the client’s network.
So there is a learning and development plan, there is a tentative schedule, and there is an allotted budget. What now? The next step is to find a competent coach.
Coaching in a workplace setting is a development strategy that involves a professional coach or external consultant. These people then work with employees by guiding them towards skill, performance, and career development.
This method is personalized and tailored, accounting for both the coach’s and the employee’s knowledge and skill level. Unlike mentoring a group, the coaching approach lets the workers walk different paths which ultimately converge to their individual betterment, resulting in collective growth and improvement of their wellbeing. These characteristics make coaching, ideally, a one-on-one technique.
Adopting this coaching culture brings up a plethora of opportunities for not only individual but also company-wide improvement. When correcting flaws and working around or with inevitable circumstances such as disability, the personalized method facilitates communication. Employee upskilling brings the above-mentioned reasons why learning and growth are crucial.
Having employees who complete the resume checkbox isn’t enough to become a successful business. They want to learn and improve.
Competent people are needed in order to maintain high standards and productivity. These competencies can be refined through learning and development programs, allowing them to thrive in an ideal workplace.
These programs involve a lot of planning, research, and specific skills that allow the most effective implementation. However, finding the appropriate coaches and L&D personnel can be tricky and time-consuming. Other barriers like distance, inner biases, and reluctance to open up to other people can also get in the way of coaching.
Fortunately, various coaching programs and tools are available to help. Case in point, Noa.
Bypassing the human barriers, you can instead talk to a conversational AI whose machine learning tailors the conversation to you and your situation. The coaching sessions assist Noa in learning more about you, leading to meaningful questions that help you think and uncover insights.
Unlike regular chatbots, Noa is equipped with the latest research in emotional and behavioral science, best practice coaching frameworks, and cognitive behavioral coaching. Simply put, Noa is your best guide through the journey towards learning and development at your own pace.