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Learning Applications: Education in Context
Knowledge drives business performance, and linking mission-critical information to each employee's role and work is essential to success. The technology is available, but the model must adapt to changing needs.
April is a transitional month for America's favorite pastime. Spring training is behind us, and the regular season commences. Every year, Major League Baseball moves from simulation and practice to high-stakes performance. But how do they - and how can learners in your organization - move from learning and practicing to performing on the job?
Camped out in the temperate climates of Arizona and Florida, baseball players learn, practice, simulate and demonstrate their skills without the repercussions of the regular season. But with their training behind them, players take their positions on the fields of ballparks across the country and go to work. Will they remember what they learned during training? Will they be able to apply the tips and strategies that their coaches taught them? When a player finds himself in a hitting slump or up against a new pitcher, will he know how to deal with the situation? Will he hit a home run? Regardless of how prepared he may feel, no player will remember and apply absolutely everything learned and practiced during spring training.
This same challenge is faced by every organization's employees. As the knowledge economy develops, workers are increasingly expected to retain more and more mission-critical knowledge. E-mail, intranets, portals, e-learning, classroom training, knowledge bases, brown-bag luncheons, kiosks, posters and newsletters are all communication vehicles that companies use to deliver information to their workforce. How does an employee sort through the massive quantities of information to learn and apply the knowledge that will improve performance? Unless companies begin recruiting only from among the ranks of Mensa members, they will need to find a different model for deploying knowledge.
What's Wrong With Today's Rules?
The technology exists today to develop a different model. But what are the problems with today's model?
- Identifying Learning Needs: When the question, "What type of knowledge would most increase your performance?" is posed on employee surveys, the most common response from almost all employee categories is, "I don't know." Most workers don't even understand how their individual performance is measured, much less understand what they need to do or learn to improve their performance.
- Accessing Knowledge and Learning: When a worker or manager identifies a knowledge or development need, the challenge in most organizations is knowing where to find what they need. Resources include the learning management system (LMS), the corporate intranet, the Internet, various knowledge bases, co-workers, subject-matter experts and more. The average adult has an attention span of 10 seconds to locate desired information when scanning a Web page. If they don't find what they need, they leave - and never return.
- Tracking: The vast majority of both formal and informal learning that takes place within an organization is not tracked. The majority of recorded webcasts, training documents, quick reference guides, data sheets, sales tools and even rapid e-learning courses are consumed and never tracked by organizations. The result? Most organizations don't know the percentage of workers in even the most critical roles who possess the knowledge to perform that role at optimal levels.
- Accountability and Verification: Once a learning need is identified and the appropriate content is determined, most organizations are unable to verify whether an employee has actually comprehended and retained the content. Again, the mission-critical knowledge transfer is left to chance even for the most important roles in the organization.
Leveraging the Latest in Brain Science to Deliver the Next Generation of E-Learning
May 29th 1:00pm - 2:00pm CT
2013 CLO Breakfast Club, Boston
September 12th - 12th, 2013The Westin Copley Place
Fall 2013 CLO Symposium
September 30th - October 2nd, 2013Rancho Las Palmas Resort & Spa
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