Continuous learning is the minimum requirement for success in any field, Brian Tracy said. And he couldn’t be more right. But let’s put it in a different way. What’s your ideal job? What’s that job that you aim at reaching at one point in your career? What do you have to learn to get there? And, more importantly, what do you have to learn after getting there?
But let’s take them step by step. Why is it SO important to keep gaining knowledge? As human beings, we all want to progress. To move on. To be able to do more. But the business environment does not just stop and wait for us to get there. It’s always on the move. It changes contexts. It requires the ability to adapt. And we cannot do this in the absence of proper learning. So, a training program is not enough. A continuous training mindset is needed at the level of any company.
Yes, it definitely does. We’ve started this article with a projection towards our ideal future job, but let’s continue it with a throwback to our first day at our current job. Most of us were stressed out about the professional beginning, curious about what would happen, about our spot in the big picture of the company. That’s when the onboarding training program came into place. But even if you receive an awesome learning program at the beginning, you still need to gain knowledge and skills while moving forward. And this is what continuous training means: to keep up with our responsibilities while our jobs and working lives change and develop.
Moreover, when we are provided with continous training to be able to keep up with the new requirements, we feel more confident. More able to do our jobs right. To speak up and to get those ideas out of our heads and bring them to the table. This also means more engagement at the level of the company, because when people feel empowered to express their ideas, an ongoing brainstorming session comes out of nowhere and brings productivity and creativity to the day to day tasks.
Also, investing in continuous training is a way to make your employees valued and appreciated. It’s a way of showing them that you know that the new working context is challenging, but that knowledge is a way to overcome the challenge. Also, if people feel that they are not valued, they will not give their best. They will do their jobs, to the best of their capabilities. But they will not struggle to get better. To find solutions. To solve issues. They will just do their jobs. If companies provide training programs just from time to time, the employees will give their best just from time to time too. And that’s not what people want, right?
So, continuous training programs also lead to more productivity. People are usually curious to put knowledge into practice, which eventually leads to being more productive at work and to find real life contexts to apply the theoretical concepts, which is great both for the corporate development and for the personal of professional development of each employee. And when everyone feel engaged and involved with their work, objectives are achieved and employee turnover is overcome.
Also, another interesting thing that you might do in the continuous training approach is to extend the concept to things that people want to know in their real lives, which usually makes people happy.
"People who often learn new skills tend to be happier individuals and more value to their organizations. For example, Zappos, a shoe retailer based in Seattle, Washington, maintains a “Wishez” list. Employees post things they are interested in learning, such as how to cook an ethnic dish, and they are connected with other members in the organization who have these skills. This focus on continuous learning makes for happier employees, which makes for more productive workers", according to this study.
Some (final) thoughts
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