Jane Hart’s favourite 30 posts of 2017

Jane Hart has chosen her favourite 30  posts and articles that have been featured in the MWL Newsletter this year. These are listed in chronological order below.

[1]  EMPLOYEES DON’T NEED WORKPLACE TOOLS TO BE FUN, JUST EFFICIENT – CMSWire, 16 February 2017

“Organizations have been trying for years to increase employee adoption of tools — and make work fun in the process — by incorporating gamification into the work environment. Gamification hasn’t increased employee engagement and motivation the way organizations hoped it would. This is especially true with information workers, where gamification efforts fell flat.”

[2]  BECOMING A LEARNING CULTURE: COMPETING IN AN AGE OF DISRUPTION – Stephen Gill, 17 February 2017

The only thing holding companies back from learning at the speed of change is their organizational culture which, for many, is a barrier to learning. Most companies have a training culture, not a learning culture. This emphasis on formal training is a barrier to learning and change.”

[3]   …BUT SOME MANAGERS ARE MORE EQUAL THAN OTHERS – Mark Britz, 23 February 2017

“Operations managers have learned through experience too that they can impact performance without L&D .. Sorry L&D, this won’t change with evermore new and flashy technology and approaches, more course offerings, mobile learning, microlearning, or games and gamification. These are mostly seen as add-ons in the corporate world, more push into the world of work but not of the world of work.The only way to shift course and have organizational learning be on par with other functions and departments is to become more a function of the work and become primarily department-less.”

[4]   L&D SHOULD SUPPORT PEOPLE LIKE A SPORTS TEAM – ALL DAY, EVERY DAY– Dennis Callahan, 24 February 2017

“If you’re in L&D and not a full-time facilitator or instructor,
 you probably spend most of your time with managers and SME’s, not individuals who need the skills you’re helping to build. As we shift to more focus more on individual learning, we will see more L&D people working with individuals and teams rather than SMEs and managers. L&D will continue to be connected with managers and senior leaders but will play a bigger role in the lives of employees.”

[5]  HOW TO MANAGE SELF-MOTIVATED,  INTELLIGENT WORKERS  David Tuffley, Conversation, 27 February 2017

“Knowledge workers dislike being micro-managed. They value independence and work best when given the tools they need, the authority to make decisions and the space to get on with the job.’`

[6]  THE CORPORATE IMPLICATIONS OF LONGER LIFE – MIT Sloan Management Review, 1 March 2017

“As working lives become longer, the need for lifelong learning will increase. As working lives become multistaged and the sequence of those stages becomes more customized, individuals will take an interest in skills with value that extends beyond the current employer and sector. This will weaken the one-size-fits-all approach to learning and development. Instead, there will be a growing need for more decentralized and flexible approaches to learning, curated more by individuals than by employers. Skills and knowledge that are portable and externally accredited will be particularly valuable. Longevity will force a shift in responsibility for lifelong learning toward the individual.”

[7]  FIND AND NURTURE THE NEXT GENERATION OF DIGITAL LEADERS – CMS Wire, 3 March 2017

“You won’t necessarily find these people where you think, and there’s a strong possibility many aren’t in your current emerging/future leaders program. Such programs often still operate with old identification and skills frameworks — what we previously assumed were good leadership skills, such as command-and-control decision making.”

[8]  SELF-DIRECTED LEARNING – Jane Bozarth, Learning Solutions Magazine, 7 March 2017

“Recognize that, for whatever reason, motivated adults can do fine at setting learning goals, choosing resources, and evaluating their outcomes. As ever, building in time and space for employees to occasionally pursue their own learning can serve as a great motivator and benefit.”

[9]  THE KNOWLEDGE AND LEARNING TRANSFER PROBLEM  – Charles Jennings, 2 May 2017

“We can’t and don’t transfer knowledge between people. We transfer information. A subtle but important distinction.”

[10]  THE UNCERTAIN FUTURE OF TRAINING  – Harold Jarche, 8 May 2017

“The future of training is a refocus on learning. Learning is not something we can do for others. But there will always be a need to help others become better learners. Modelling with our own practices is that way. Removing barriers to learning is another role for the now-defunct training department. Many organizations block access to resources. Some do not promote time and space for reflection. There is little accommodation to actually learn lessons from our collective actions. Increasing the speed of organizational learning should be the new focus. Promoting self-directed learning, supporting social learning, and removing barriers to learning should replace course development and delivery.”

[11] SURVEY SAID  … “ENOUGH WITH THE E-LEARNING ALREADY!”  – Gary Wise, 8 May 2017

“It’s funny that our recently surveyed learners told us to STOP forcing E-Learning on them when I just read someplace that E-Learning is on the rise as the solution of choice. The bastion of L&D and the E-Learning vendors are sold on e-learning as the answer it seems. Either our recently on-boarded performers (learners) that we surveyed at the Point-of-Work are whacked, or the folks who are supposed to be on the bleeding edge of developing effective learning solutions are smoking something.”

[12]  WHY YOUR TRAINING METHODS AREN’T WORKING (EVEN IF YOU THINK THEY ARE) – Inc, 10 May 2017

“If your training programs are as uninspiring, un-motivating and out-of-touch as a lot of companies, you’re driving away your best people because they aren’t getting adequate opportunities to develop.”

[13] THE MISSING HALF OF TRAINING  – Harold Jarche, 10 May 2017

“Training does not end for military personnel once they have finished their formal qualifications. Nor should it end for civilians, but it does — until the next course. As a result of this pervasive mindset, the scam of compliance training was developed. It is premised on the assumption that a formal course will change behaviour. As a result, workers are forced to take compliance training, so that in the event of a disaster, management can say that people were trained, and the organization has no further responsibility. The training industry is fully compliant in this charade.”

[14]  SMALLER, FASTER TRAINING IS NOT GOING TO MOVE US FORWARD  –  Mark Britz, 26 May 2017

“Sadly L&D continues to rest on its laurels, its golden era behind it and yet only capable of doing what they know best with the tools they know best vs. what is needed most. The industry has taken a page right out of big pharma’s playbook; convince people there’s a widespread illness and provide the cure.”

[15]  THERE’S NO SUCH THING AS BIG DATA IN HR  HBR, 2 June 2017 

“As with most of “the next big thing” stories in business, big data is really important in some areas, and not so important in others. As a literal definition, HR does not actually have big data, or more precisely, almost never does. Most companies have thousands of employees, not millions, and the observations on those employees are still for the most part annual. In a company of this size, there is almost no reason for HR to use the special software and tools associated with big data.”

[16] WHAT 25 YEARS OF TEACHING TAUGHT ME ABOUT EMPLOYEE MOTIVATION – Jeff Miller, Inc, 2 June 2017

“If you want to excite someone about what you’re sharing, you need to switch the mentality from “teaching” to “learning.” It’s a minor word difference, but it has massive implications.  Talent development is about thinking bottom-up, instead of top-down  … If you come to them with an opportunity to expand their skill set while exploring their interests, instead of a requirement to attend a mandatory management training, you’ll have a much more engaged audience.”

[17] THE ENIGMA OF SOCIAL LEARNING  – Helen Blunden, Activate Learning Solutions, June 2017

“Learning and Development don’t really understand what social learning is and the business doesn’t care much about it … In my observations and experience, this is because corporate Learning and Development teams may be unaware of what social learning really is about and be under the mistaken belief that it’s another way to push content or their new systems onto their time-poor employees without understanding the motivations behind workplace collaboration and knowledge sharing;  and also not role modelling these behaviours themselves.”

[18] HIRE LEARNERS FOR THE KNOWLEDGE ECONOMY–  Stephen Gill, 6 July 2017

“Companies today need learners. In the Agricultural Economy, a strong back was enough. In the Industrial Economy, a set of good hands was enough. But in the Knowledge Economy, companies need people who can develop their minds. The Knowledge Economy needs people who are self-directed learners, who know how to get the information and skills they need when and where they need them, who can think critically in terms of evaluating the accuracy and usefulness of this information, and who can learn from both successes and failures”

[19]  LIFELONG LEARNING HELPS PEOPLE, GOVERNMENTS AND BUSINESSES. WHY DON’T WE DO MORE OF IT?  – World Economic Forum, 27 July 2017

“For companies, investing in worker skills makes sense too – it promotes flexibility and creativity, problem-solving, teamwork and an increased sense of agency among staff, making them happier and more productive. These are, of course, exactly the traits needed as companies face of the challenges of the latest industrial revolution.”

[20]  L&D TUNEUP  – Clark Quinn, Learnlets, 8 August 2017

“And that’s the thing: L&D is too often still operating in the old, mechanical, model. We have the view of a hierarchical model where a few plan and prepare and train folks to execute. We stick with face-to-face training or maybe elearning, putting everything in the head, when science shows that we often function better from information in the world or even in other people’s heads!  And this old approach no longer works.”

[21]  GOOD LEADERS ARE GOOD LEARNERS – HBR, 10 August 2017

“Although organizations spend more than $24 billion annually on leadership development, many leaders who have attended leadership programs struggle to implement what they’ve learned. It’s not because the programs are bad but because leadership is best learned from experience.”

[22] SELF-DIRECTED LEARNING CAN ONLY WORK IF …   – JD Dillon, Learning Solutions Magazine, 15 August 2017

“Employees will take it upon themselves to solve problems and develop their skills regardless of support they receive from L&D. We must accept this as the not-so-new normal and adjust our strategies accordingly. We must let go of our implausible ownership of the learning process and instead enable autonomous learning through clear expectations, consistent feedback, and accessible resources. People have always self-directed their learning. L&D just hasn’t always been there to help out.”

[23]  JUST GET STARTED  – Mike Taylor, 21 August 2017

“Anyone, anywhere can surface, spread, and sustain learning in the workplace. It doesn’t require any complex platforms nor any expensive tools. Look around at what you have and use that. Sure, there are lots of fancy options for micro-learning and curation you can buy. But I’ll let you in on a little secret – you don’t need them.”

[24] WHO OWNS THE “OTHER 95%”?   – Gary Wise, 25 August 2017

“If “no training” turns out to be the solution why should L&D spend valuable resources to discover they do not need to build a training solution? If that question surfaces, we are in deeper doo-dah than we realize. Consider this question – Would it be a problem if L&D never developed another course? If the answer is “YES!” then you’re not alone. That’s where we are. But is it where we should be?”

[25]  I HIRE SMART PEOPLE AND GET OUT OF THEIR WAY.” LEE IACOCCA. “TELL PEOPLE WHAT YOU NEED, NOT WHAT TO DO ” PETER DRUCKER –  Oleg Vishnepolsky,  20 September 2017

“Peter Drucker said: “Knowledge Workers are people who know more about what they are doing than their boss does.”

Barry Appelman: “Do not keep smart people on a tight leash”.

Simon Sinek: “When we tell people to do their jobs, we get workers. When we trust people to get the job done, we get leaders.”

[26]  21ST CENTURY TALENT SPOTTING  – Harvard Business Review, 6 November 2017

“Jobs are changing rapidly, and the question now is not whether people have the right skills; it’s whether they have the potential to learn new ones.”

[27]  CULTIVATING THE NEXT GENERATION OF TALENT  – Fast Company, 16 November 2017

“And while organizations can make training and other learning opportunities available, employees must focus on intangibles, too. “How can you be a continuous learner?” asks PwC’s Puthiyamadam. “Are you a true collaborator? Do you know how to use social capabilities to solve problems? If you don’t have that mindset, it doesn’t matter what training you take.”

[28]  WHY GROUPING YOUR WORKFORCE BY GENERATION IS A MISTAKE –  Julie Chakraverty, Forbes, 22 November 2017

“Employers who categorize employees by generation are potentially dismissing employees’ abilities or skills because of their age. Judging employees by generation needs to stop – the broad brushstroke approach doesn’t work in the workplace as employees expect (and deserve) to be treated as individuals, not as a group with assumed commonalities driven by their date of birth.”

[29] MASTERING THE LEARNING PYRAMID  – John Hagel, 28 November 2017

“We’re focusing on the wrong thing. Focusing on skills betrays a static view of the world. The assumption is that if we acquire certain skills, we will be protected from the onslaught of the robots and the rapidly changing world around us. It ignores the fact that the average half-life of a skill is now about five years and continuing to shrink.

It’s precisely that static view of the world that is our biggest barrier. We need to find ways to prepare ourselves for a world where learning is a lifetime endeavor. The question then becomes: what will help us to learn faster so that we can quickly acquire whatever skills are required in the moment?”

[30] MOVE OVER HR, OD IS COMING AND WE’RE TAKING THE SEAT YOU NEVER HAD) –  Stephen Hart, 3 December 2017

“Organisational Development is a function that is perfectly placed to meet the needs of the new emerging organisation. As a future focused profession, OD is best placed to design organisational agility, enable organisational capacity and capability and build purposeful culture.”

2,556 total views
The following two tabs change content below.

Jane Hart

Jane Hart helps organisations and learning professionals modernise their approaches to workplace learning - through public workshops and bespoke consultancy. She is the Editor of the Modern Workplace Learning Magazine, and is the author of a number of books including Modern Workplace Learning 2018 as well as the resource for individuals How to become a Modern Professional Learner. Jane was the 2018 recipient of the ATD Distinguished Contribution to Talent Development award. You can contact Jane at Jane.Hart@C4LPT.co.uk.