The future of L&D
August 6, 2013 Leave a comment
Once again a fantastic little post from Sukh. I think that he and the report he quotes are definitely right. One of the big issues I see on a daily basis in L&D is a lack of skills and knowledge around the financial and business acumen piece and it is letting us down. As I have said in previous places if we are going to talk about ROI and the financial costs and benefits of learning initiatives we had better know what we are talking about because trust me the guy from finance sitting across the table from us does. It reminds me of one of the best book I ever read on the Learning Function “The Business of Learning” by David Vance.
The need for good data stems from this necessity to be able to justify the need for and even in some instances the existence of programs. If we can’t show that there was a better customer experience because we sent our staff on a course then why are we sending them on the course. It is also not good enough anymore to have the soft numbers either; the doing this course will make staff more productive which will give them an extra hour a day to do the things they need to do which will equate to a $300,000 saving in first 3 months rubbish. Its rubbish and everyone knows it is rubbish, yet I still see they claims being made on almost a daily basis. However if we can show that an increase in customer satisfaction is due to the program of learning, then, then we are onto something.
A lot of people in L&D need to realise that it is a business, just like every other part of the business and start to act like it.
Have you had a chance to look at the latest report from the Learning and Performance Institute about the Capability Map of L&D professionals? It makes for interesting reading. You can download a free copy of the summary report here, and if you’re a paying member you can download the full report here.
Here’s what I’ve taken away from the report. L&D will become a dead profession in the next five years unless we undergo radical change. Or thought about another way, L&D has the prime opportunity to position itself as a value adding service to the business.
Either way the future for the profession is highly volatile. I’m not even being sensational about this.
What are L&D professionals good at?
– Managing the learning function – hurrah!
– Live delivery – phew.
– Learning resources – yay!
– Performance improvement – come on!
What are we poor…
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