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High-impact learning culture: 3 steps to generate valuable learning

High-impact learning culture: an overview

Recently, we wrote an introductory article about high-impact learning culture, talking about its importance at the level of organizations and the benefits it brings to both employees and the management team. 

About twelve years ago, Josh Bersin wrote an article about the same topic, i.e. how to build a high-impact learning culture, with his main idea being that “the single biggest driver of business impact is the strength of an organization’s learning culture”. Now think of all the things that have happened since 2010, the digital revolution, the evolution of technology, the impact of the pandemic and how it has affected the way we work and learn, the huge need for skills that didn’t even exist 12 years ago. Thus, if the learning culture was such a game-changer 12 years ago, now it’s definitely a must. 

High-impact learning culture in 3 steps

There’s not a secret recipe to implement a high-impact learning culture within your organization. It’s all about everyone’s involvement, it’s about the mindset, about the awareness of what learning is all about, what it can do, how it can impact the organization as a whole and the individual development paths. But we’ll come up with a few suggestions which might help you get started. 

  1. Lead by example

If you ask us, this is the first step in every aspect of life. When you want to teach a child that playing outside is great, you do not teach this by spending all your weekend indoors playing on your phone, right? It’s the same with developing a high-impact learning culture. Senior leaders should model the behaviors and attitudes that they want to see in their employees, which includes setting aside time for their own learning, sharing their experiences with others, and encouraging employees to do the same. 

As shown by the leadership value chain model, the actions and habits of leaders, particularly those that they engage in regularly, hold significant sway over the actions and outcomes of their teams. Therefore, if you aim to foster a curious and learning-oriented culture within your team or organization, it is crucial to lead by example. Begin by demonstrating a commitment to learning and nourishing your own curiosity.

  1. Provide access to learning materials

From training materials to online courses, from books to articles, organizations should make sure that employees have the resources they need to grow and develop in their careers. At Knolyx, we are aware that having quick access to knowledge is essential. And to give you a bit of an insight, our roadmap focuses on a functionality called knowledge graphs, which will allow every single learner in the organization to find a specific concept in no time. 

  1. Provide feedback and continuously evaluate

You should be aware that people are usually unaware of their limitations, and that’s why periodically providing feedback is essential, especially when you want to empower people to take control of their own learning. As Harvard Business Review stated, one of the best ways to trigger curiosity is by highlighting a knowledge gap. 

Also, it is important for organizations to continuously evaluate and improve their learning culture. This can be done through regular surveys, focus groups, and other feedback mechanisms. Organizations should also regularly review their learning and development initiatives to ensure they are meeting the needs of their employees and driving the desired outcomes.

A bit extra

We’ve also come across 40 best practices for creating an empowered enterprise, and we’ll just leave our 7 favorites here, as a further step in developing a high-impact learning culture: 

  • Asking questions is encouraged. 
  • Employees take active responsibility for their own personal development. 
  • Collaboration is common and regarded as an important method for learning. 
  • Employees know what learning and/or developmental opportunities are available to them and where to find them. 
  • Executives take a personal interest in the capabilities of teams and individuals. 
  • Most employees can explain the organization’s core values and beliefs to someone outside the company. 
  • The organization values mistakes and failures as learning opportunities and provides structured opportunities for reflection. 

To wrap-it-up, implementing a high impact learning culture is a continuous process that requires the support and commitment of the entire organization. Reinforce positive learning behaviors, foster curiosity among employees, hire people with high learnability and make sure you do not underestimate the power of a continuous learning culture across the organization. 

Some (final) thoughts

We’ve been an active participant in so many learning journeys across different industries, and if you want us to be a part of your journey towards a high-impact learning culture, let’s have a chat.

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