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Leading the Transformation From Training to Learning
In an industry where buzzwords abound, seemingly similar terms are used within the business units served by the chief learning officer. Often, this has an undermining effect on getting a clear message from the in-house professional development team to the
In an industry where buzzwords abound, seemingly similar terms are used within the business units served by the chief learning officer. Often, this has an undermining effect on getting a clear message from the in-house professional development team to the operating unit as to whom is responsible for what. The difference between the words “training” and “learning,” for example, isn’t a matter of semantics. These key terms strike at the heart of what everyone’s role is, including the CLO (or the CLO function if you don’t have that specific title), the managers and the individual learners. So whose job is it to turn training into learning?
Learning Versus Training
Some argue that a training seminar is a one-time event, whereas learning is ongoing, but this way of thinking is a bit simplistic. It is easy to get caught up with the majority of learning and development professionals who dislike the word “training,” but the term and its role in real development and learning needs to be better categorized.
Trained employees are exposed to the essence—the core—of a skill, behavior or knowledge and are shown how to apply this new talent or information. Training is a core step in the process of learning, but it is not learning itself. Even training that leads to a proof of mastery or certification cannot be labeled as learning. To learn is to do, to apply, to morph and adapt to the knowledge or skill acquired in training to the circumstance. So lest the training bashing continue, it is more important to focus on its role as a component of learning. Training without the rest of the learning context of why it is needed (to prepare) and what is to be done with it (to apply it) is a waste of time, money and talent.
In a clearer nomenclature, learning is a lifelong endeavor—but it is one whose responsibility lies with the learner, his or her manager and the organization for which both work. The learner should be alert to the danger of professional obsolescence in today’s fast-changing world. He or she should be continually seeking out opportunities to grow knowledge. And if the learner does not accept that responsibility, it is the manager’s role to supply the context of what the organization, at least, if not the individual, needs and expects him or her to know and, more importantly, do.
Microlearning â€” Size DOES Matter
June 20th 1:00pm - 2:00pm CT
2013 CLO Breakfast Club, Boston
September 12th - 12th, 2013The Westin Copley Place
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