As I think about corporate learning in 2010, five words come to mind:
Social: If the 90’s were the “e” decade: e-learning, e-libraries, look for 2010 to be the “s” decade: social learning and social networking. When the word “social” is applied to learning it means: learning which is collaborative, immediate, relevant and presented in the context of an individual’s unique work environment. In the context of social networking, social learning becomes less about learning and more about how efficiently and effectively you can impact the business by increasing the frequency of innovation, shortening the time to competency and decreasing errors.
Mobile: The same-time, same-place model of learning will slowly disappear, as corporate learners look to mobile devices for their learning. In a number of countries, there are now more mobiles than people. For example, as of 2009, for every 100 individuals in the United Kingdom there were 123.64 mobile subscriptions. Global System For Mobile Communications projects that by 2012, there will be 4.5 billion mobile subscriptions out of a global population of 7 billion. Already, several financial service firms such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are exploring using mobile phones to deliver compliance training, product training and performance support/on-the-job aids.
Collaborative:. More companies will strive to be like P&G, who two years ago took a visionary stance on product development, mandating that 50 percent of product innovation come from collaborating with partners and customers. While collaboration has been thought of as employees collaborate internally, the workplace of the future will strive for much more external collaboration and will provide employees with access to external networks to make this collaboration possible. But while employees will push for greater access to external networking sites, the HR issue for 2010 will be how to moderate access to external sites and what rules and regulations should be put on the books to ensure that organizational resources and property aren’t compromised and that reputations aren’t risked.
Engaging: Employee engagement will continue to be a top issue on the dashboard for HR and Learning executives. The reason is simple: according to a survey conducted by the Corporate Executive Board, (CEB), companies with highly engaged employees demonstrate a 3-year revenue growth of 20.1%, compared to the 8.9% their industry peers will average. They also establish a 3-year EBITDA growth that is three times higher than their industry peers. What’s more, CEB research shows that shifting an individual employee from low engagement to high engagement can improve employee performance by up to 20%, and can thus significantly reduce recruitment costs. Look for more learning objectives to be tied to increases in employee engagement.
Fun: Regardless of our age, we will expect to learn in much the same way as we shop, communicate and network with friends. This means corporate learning will become much more social, fun, and highly collaborative experience. Some of the tools that will grow in importance include video games, simulations, and alternate-reality games to develop leadership and complex critical thinking skills. Video games, such as World of Warcraft, are part of a category of games called massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs). These games have the potential to become realistic simulators for training in leadership development, and a diverse set of skills, such as managing a virtual team, and analyzing constantly changing data.
In 2010, if you aren’t paying attention to how the world of corporate learning is evolving, you may lose your competitive edge.
What words would you add to this list and why? Share them here with me