Moving from a Training Culture to a Learning Culture

man-479670_640I’ve just read an interesting post on Stephen Gill’s blog about how PwC Canada is striving for a Learning Culture.

In fact I’m seeing this approach becoming a growing trend in a number organisations that recognise that in the modern workplace it’s no longer just about training people, but building a true learning culture that promotes and supports all the ways we learn at work.

These organisations also recognise that role of L&D is evolving in a number of new ways from its traditional role of creating, delivering one-size-fits all content and managing/measuring learning outcomes (in some sort of LMS) towards …

  1. creating resources in more relevant and flexible ways – so that people can personalise their own learning experiences to fit their specific needs and personal preferences best – and which are measured in terms of performance impact (rather than levels of activity or completion) BUT ALSO
  2. supporting everyday (personal and team) learning – arising through daily work experiences as well as personally planned learning activities – and once again measuring performance outcomes – ie their impact on jobs, teams and business improvement.

Although the first involves modernising existing training practices, the second requires quite different approaches:

  • working with managers and individuals to promote and support personal learning – that is  individuals taking responsibility for their own learning, reflecting on (and learning from) their work experiences, and planning their own self-improvement activities – in the ways that suit them best  – with the guidance of Personal Learning Advisors
  • working with managers and their teams to support teamwork and in particularly social collaboration – using social tools to underpin team work – in order for the team to benefit from continuous learning as a a part of team and business improvement – all supported and guided by Collaboration Consultants.

mwlondeskEnabling and supporting all these approaches within an organisation is about building, what I call, a Modern Workplace Learning (MWL) culture, and how to do that, is of course the topic of my recent book: Modern Workplace Learning: A resource book for L&D.

Additionally, my ongoing series of MWL social online workshops focuses at each of these different aspects of this modern workplace learning culture, with the next one on the list is How to become a Collaboration Consultant  starting 9 November.

Come and join learning professionals from around the world.

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Jane Hart

Founder at C4LPT
Jane Hart is an independent workplace learning advisor, writer and international speaker. She is the Founder of the Centre for Learning & Performance Technologies. Her recent book Modern Workplace Learning: A Resource Book for L&D is now available, which she supports with a range of online workshops. Find out more about Jane at

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  6. Carol Bleyle

    Hi Jane,

    Thanks for a terrific article. I love your point that employees need to be accountable for their own development, and we need to give them the tools and resources to do that. As someone who likes to control her own destiny, I hope this trend continues.

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