Learning Strategy: 3 Methods to Gain Leadership Support
Do you feel like it is impossible to get leadership’s support or attention for learning?
Do they talk about how much they support it but their actions don’t match. It is hard and near impossible to lead your learning strategy when you don’t have support from your leadership team.
In this session, we’ll cover:
- Three methods for leading your learning strategy
- Two main reasons that motivate people/organizations to change
- How to beat google in the knowledge department
In this session, we will break down methods to increase your ability to lead learning strategy within your organization. Today’s episode is all about trying to stop the struggle of getting leadership support in your training endeavors.
We know that leaders are busy and often times they support learning in theory but in practicality they aren’t providing the right level of cultural or leadership support for you to be successful with your learning strategy. Which is understandable right, they are busy with sales, customers and delivery and not so much on training the employees that are within the organization.
So there are three methods that we can dive into to make sure that you can increase your penetration in terms of learning strategy within the organization.
Method 1: Tie Learning Strategy directly into Business Results and Goals
So what I mean by this isn’t employee knowledge or skills, it is what are the business drivers that are impacting the company.
There are two reasons why people (and organizations) make change. The first thing is to reduce pain. So there is some sort of angst within the organization that needs to be solved. Sales are down, customer complaints are up, profitability is effected,etc.
All of those business metrics are key indicators that there is some sort of pain. On the flip side there is some sort of positivity or some sort of enhanced outcome that is happening – so you want to move away from pain or toward the something that is more positive.
Those are the two ways that people (organizations) will change/move within an organization. So therefore your learning strategy needs to be anchored on one of those things, to either remove pain or challenges within the organization from a business perspective or to increase some sort of results or positive metric within the organization. So you are moving the needle in one direction or the other but you need to tie it in from business metrics, not from any other format within the organization for your leadership because they are very focused on business metrics.
Common Key Business Metrics to Consider:
- Increase/Decrease in Sales
- Decrease in Profitability (errors/re-work, quality, returns, etc)
- Increase in Turnover
- Increase in Customer Complaints
- Decrease in Industry Reputation/Market Position
- Increase in Safety Incidents
All of these can be solved with a solid learning strategy.
Method 2: Identify Skills, Knowledge and Motivation
When you are creating your learning strategy you not only need to think about the bigger business goals and learning culture but you need to consider the skills, knowledge and motivation of the employee in which you are creating learning for.
This is key. A lot of times we feel we are competing with google because you can get information about anything on google and everyone has access to that. So not only do you need to provide them with knowledge but you need to be able to curate it, put it together in some sort of sensible way that allows someone to learn it, sequence it and make it applicable to your organization. People are automatically going to go out and find an answer from google but how do you influence how they are finding the answer and the knowledge that you are providing to them that is specific for your organization.
Skills are what people are able to do with the information. They are able to apply that knowledge to what they need to do on the job. So we want to provide them with examples, scenarios and practice so they can build their skills. This is critical when you think about how people can take what they know and move it into something they can do.
We have to remember this piece because we can give people skills and knowledge but unless they are motivated and what’s in it for them, how it will increase their success on the job or decrease their pain in terms of performance, we won’t get them tied into their “why” and their internal motivation for making a change and moving the needle for themselves in terms of their performance.
Method 3: Track Outcomes or change to prove ROI
The third way to get leadership on board is to track your learning efforts to make sure they are moving the needle. And to prove that you are getting that return on their investment that they are actually able to see that their is a direct correlation between what you are doing from a learning outcome perspective to those business outcomes. This can be done in many ways but it is critical to track those analytics of what you are creating, how you are creating it, when you are creating it and when it is implemented within the organization to increase the level of confidence with leadership.
Take Action: Take 1 method and apply it within your organization and let us know your results. Leave a comment below and let us know how it went.