Over the last two weeks a number of new readers have joined our group.  I was delighted when one of their responses to the invitation included the following, ” I always love to learn more and improve myself so, keep ’em coming!”  What a great attitude!  Within that small  sentence is a powerful message.  Learning leads to improvement!  It can lead to some other things too!

Roshan Thiran reminds us, “There is never a time in our lives when we are complete, precisely because there is always something new to discover about the world around us.” His September 2016 post, 4 Reasons Why We Shouldn’t Stop Learning presents four reasons that lifelong learning is critical.

In a similar vein, we need to also consider the changing nature of learning in the workplace.  In Steve Gill’s post, “From Training Culture to a Learning Culture”, he challenges us to look at work-based learning (what many refer to as professional development)from a new perspective.  Traditionally organizational learning has been something that happens in a classroom, delivered by a trainer away from the worksite, with content and activities selected by an instructional designer.”  He maintains that changes in the workplace necessitate a shift in our professional development paradigm from a “training” culture to a “learning” culture where,  “learning happens all the time, at events but also on the job, socially, through coaches and mentors, from action-learning, from smartphones and tablets, and from experimenting with new processes.”  This will be a challenge!

An equally challenging task will be to effectively design a learning culture that serves to develop the talent of the vast number of millennials now a part of the workforce.   According to Ryan Jenkin’s, How to Effectively Train Millennials in the Workplace, companies spend over $130 Billion per year on employee development, with leadership training accounting for the single largest area of training.  At the same time, research reveals that 69% of millennials aspire to leadership positions within the next  5 years and 60% want training to develop their leadership skills.  Great, but there is one problem…..71% of millennials who are likely to leave their organization within the next two years are dissatisfied with the manner in which their leadership skills are being developed.  Jenkins proposes 6 Elements Needed to Deliver Training that Transforms Millennials.

Finally, a thank-you!  Your participation in this project speaks volumes about you as a learning leader. You do this on your own time, it’s not a job requirement, and there are no material perks.  Yet, you take the time to read this Newsletter and consider the ideas as they relate to you personally and professionally.  Hopefully you even find some ideas that you can use!  In their book, Learning Leadership, Jim Kouzes and Barry Posner identify a problem – the world needs exemplary leaders!  They share, “the reason is not because of a shortage of potential talent, but rather due to demographic shifts, insufficient trainings/experiences and prevailing mindsets that discourage people from learning to lead”.  Let’s work together to change those mindsets!  Have a great week and Embrace the Challenge,