learning culture

An Introduction to Learning Culture Part 1: What it Means and How The Industry is Poised to Support Them

Fulcrum Labs
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Organizations that prioritize the ongoing learning and development of employees are more likely to be successful than those that do not. – T&D Magazine

In fact, according to Bersin, organizations with a strong learning culture are:

  • 46 percent more likely to be first to market
  • Enjoy 37 percent greater employee productivity
  • 58 percent more prepared to meet future demand

So, what is a “learning culture” exactly?

We define a learning culture as one that:

  • Values the knowledge and skills acquired and applied in the workplace, keeping in mind the principles of andragogy – or adult learning theory – throughout employee learning engagements
  • Motivates employees to seek out self-directed learning opportunities
  • Implements a variety of processes, tools and resources that encourage self-improvement through learning
  • Supports an organization’s desire to improve, adapt and remain relevant in today’s fast-paced, skills-based world

Why isn’t every culture a learning culture?

Historically, most organizations have approached training as a task to administer rather than an experience to cultivate. It was a means to an end, not a mechanism for employee fulfillment and organizational success.

Simply put, evolving from a check-the-box training culture to a learning culture is hard. It requires buy-in from the highest levels of the organization, and it asks L&D to rethink the platforms and approaches that it is accustomed to using. For example, organizations might need to transition from static learning methodologies to more dynamic, intelligent ones. They might need to restructure their LMS to capture microlearning events or nanodegrees that employees pursue independently. And they will definitely need to move beyond the “smiley sheet” or post-training survey to embrace more impacting forms of learner data.

Additionally, until recently, it has been nearly impossible to deliver and measure training AT SCALE in a way that’s aligned with the core values of a learning culture. How do you measure engagement or motivation? Can a company really personalize the learning experience of thousands of employees? How can a company possibly predict whether or not an employee will be able to apply what they’ve learned in training?

The industry is finally poised to support learning culture

The great news is that todays’ advanced learning technologies are able to answer questions like these. As a result, it’s  easier than ever before for organizations to transition toward a learning culture. These technologies leverage a whole host of tools – from A.I. to cognitive science to insights from video games – to empower L&D departments to:

  • Evaluate the engagement and motivation of learners
  • Allow employees to learn at their own pace, instead of a one-size-fits all approach
  • Provide more opportunities for learners to control their own learning
  • Deliver personalized learning on a large scale
  • Predict whether or not employees will be able to apply the training back on the job

For example, our adaptive platform not only validates knowledge acquisition and predicts an employee’s ability to apply the knowledge in the workplace, but it also engenders intrinsic motivation, self-direction and a sense of ownership within employee. As a result, we find that not only are individual users pleased with the training, but entire workforces perform at higher levels.

Follow our ongoing learning culture discussion

In the coming weeks, this blog will explore the theme of “Learning Culture,” wherein we’ll talk about turning students and employees into learners, making a difference in the lives of employees, increasing motivation and productivity through culture, and so on. Join us as we uncover what it means to build a culture of learning and the role of learning technology in that development. Drop your email in our contact form and we’ll make sure you don’t miss Part II of this post on Learning Culture.

And here’s a short video overview of our adaptive platform.

Up Next: Part II of this series – 7 Things that Make a Strong Learning Culture

An Introduction to Learning Culture Part II: 7 Things that Make a Strong Learning Culture

An Introduction to Learning Culture Part III: 4 Tips for Building a Learning Culture