What Should Learning & Development Professionals Be Preparing for Next?
This eBook looks for the lessons behind the major disruptions of 2020, as Learning & Development (L&D) professionals, plan for a future with-and-post COVID-19. From the closings and isolation of the pandemic to its economic impact both individually and collectively in the workplace and community, professionals have all been forced into course corrections. How much of this “correction response” will be needed in the future?
For professionals charged with training and the learning & development of others, learning how to surf the constant waves of change is now a critical competency for themselves as well as for those they develop.
Changes are certainly nothing new. Some say they seem to be increasing as the personal world expands beyond the immediate geographic range to one continually impacted by global changes. The growing role of technology continues to surface as both a driver and a solution during these disruptions. As we evolve in this world impacted by quarantines and globalization, the role of eLearning will escalate from a future need to a current requirement and as the predominant theme in the evolving world of L&D in the 21st century.
What’s next? This has become an even more complex and important question for any company, its employees, and job seekers within the industry. With the extensive upheavals in home, health, work, environment, and regulation — every aspect of daily living has been and may continue to be subjected to disruption.
Following principles of innovation, such as lateral thinking from Edward DeBono, professionals should learn to see these disruptions as opportunities to adjust and course-correct. The path from A to B may not be as straight as the airport landing strip but can provide an interesting journey with twists and turns as the organization navigates the barrage of changes. Rather than seeing these as obstacles, agile organizations learn to read the current to find the optimal flow.
STOP: How To Prepare For What’s Next
- S: Scan the organization/systems
- T: Target the trends emerging and on the horizon
- O: Optimize resources based on the trends most likely to have a critical impact; determine the optimal plan to develop and utilize resources
- P: Proceed to execute plans
As much as people may dislike the stop sign at an intersection when in a rush to a destination, it is a necessary safeguard — saving lives and preventing damage by forcing drivers to take a minute in dangerous areas to check out the environment and proceed cautiously. With today’s world packed with so many potential disruptions, it is a lifesaver for L&D and training professionals, as well, to designate periods to S.T.O.P.
Niche Career No Longer Exists – Flex To The Needs
Whether providing support in the development of staff or for your own career, flexibility and adaptation are key. In this age of VUCA, workers may need to reinvent themselves multiple times in the life of their employment cycle. The workplace of the Traditionalist or even of some Baby Boomers has evolved. Gone are the retirement pensions and guaranteed healthcare. Organizations are no longer prioritizing loyalty among staff, instead of looking to workers who can bring the new skills and mindsets required by the changing environment.
The greatest asset future employees can bring to an organization is the ability to navigate and to continually leverage interests and competencies to expand and evolve as organizational requirements do. Jobs change often and a lot; from skilled worker to those who can create and deploy automation; from full-time staff to those who can work part-time or as a contractor to a variety of organizations, while no longer depending on the hiring agent to provide basic benefits such as healthcare and retirement planning. The job seeker who can continually learn and adapt and can be self-sufficient will find greater success in the volatile workplace of the 21st century.
This is also true of Learning & Development functions. From the impacts seen in the environmental scan and the identified trends, L&D professionals will be most successful by taking the time to implement the S.T.O.P. program to move forward in an informed fashion, optimizing organizational resources and proceeding to grow the L&D function with a well-developed plan.
The L&D Industry is always evolving. Download the eBook What Should Learning & Development Professionals Be Preparing For Next and get all the know-how are going to need in order to be ready for the future.