The election is over and now being the time to prepare for new leadership. President-elect Trump has a list of 13 potential team members. This is a great time to be reminded of how to prepare teams for new leadership.

The first six months of a leadership position should create momentum for sustained improvement, according to Ciampa and Watkins, the authors of the book, Right from the Start. Paying close attention to these three key elements is critical:

>> Address the problems of the organizational unit you have been called upon to lead,

>> Laying a foundation for deeper change, and

>> Build credibility with stakeholders, employees and governing boards.

Ciampa and Watkins also identify seven actions for successfully managing leadership change.

  1.       New leaders have two to three years to make measurable progress in changing the culture and improving financial performance.
  2.       At the start, the new leader should already understand the organization’s current strategy and associated goals and challenges and should have formed hypotheses about its operating priorities. During the first six months, these hypotheses must be tested and either validated or change.
  3.       New leaders must balance an intense, single-minded focus on a few vital priorities with flexibility about when and how they are implemented.
  4.       Within the first six months, the new leader must make key decisions about the “organizational architecture” of people, structure, and systems. The new leader must decide whether the composition of the inherited team is appropriate, and whether the organizational structure must change.
  5.       By the end of the first six months, the new leader must also have built some personal credibility and momentum. Early wins are crucial, as is beginning to lay a foundation for sustained improvements in performance.
  6.       The new leader must earn the right to transform the organization. The initial mandate from the Board and the CEO is never sufficient, nor will it remain static. It must be diligently and regularly reassessed. The new leader must also work actively to build coalitions supportive of change.
  7.       There is no single best way to manage a leadership transition. New leaders’ approaches will inevitably be shaped by the situations they face, their prior experience, and their leadership styles.

Source: Ciampa D, Watkins M. Right from the Start: Taking Charge in a New Leadership Role. Harvard Business School Press.

 

Published in Ideas

 

Trainers can incorporate marketing concepts in learning.

By Emma King, INXPO

Marketers have been leading the way for many years, delivering a simple yet attractive message in short snippets or segments, like TV advertising slots or social media. When training employees in a virtual learning environment, often the goals are very similar to that of a marketer’s, the strategy needs to grab the viewers’ attention and help them retain information. Luckily for trainers, marketers have already shown us many different tried and true best practices to apply to virtual learning.

Target your demographic. Marketers work to place their TV show on a channel that fits their ideal target audience. “Top Chef” wouldn’t air on MTV, and “The Deadliest Catch” would never air on E!. Applying this same concept, trainers should segment their content into different channels based on the learning profile, or demographic, of the specific user. Therefore, learning content that is relevant to the user is easily separated, ensuring that the learning topics are better focused to the user. Content should also be delivered wherever employees are with the option to choose to tune in from their phone, tablet or laptop.

Create an “Aha” moment in a short period of time. Successful marketing accommodates shorter attention spans and capitalizes on getting a message across in a short period of time while still making an impact. Successful learning must run off of the same concept. Effective trainers should be creating bite size chunks of content that are easier to absorb and retain within a minimum investment in time. 

Run a social media stream in parallel to content. Live tweeting during TV shows has become an increasingly popular way viewers engage with programming. Marketers know this helps drive activity with their audience. Having a strong presence on social media helps create a conversation around their messaging. When applicable to external audiences adding a social media stream can give learners a platform to share what they have learned and help people to stay engaged. Social streams continue the conversation and bring empowerment to the learners though interacting with thought leaders on the subject.

Give an easy reference. QR Codes, such as the one on the left, can often be found on the packaging of products that consumers purchase. The codes are often used to easily drive traffic to How to Guides & Instructional Videos. Marketers recognize that once the attention of their audience has been captured, they need to feel empowered to be satisfied with the purchase. For trainers, this applies to providing learners with a simple cheat sheet handout summarizing the key concepts they learned. The cheat sheet should be able to be downloaded anytime, anyplace, anywhere, in formats that meet the always-on culture we live in today.

Next time you tune into your favorite prime time show, watch the messaging; take note of how simply they incorporate music, catchphrases and interesting stories to capture your interest in the moment. Then, think how you can apply this concept when delivering your training program.

 

-Learn more:  http://elmezine.epubxp.com/t/185271-elearning-august-september/13

 

Published in Ideas

IT Ignites Technological Reform Across Industries

BY DENNIS BONILLA, EXECUTIVE DEAN, UNIVERSITY OF PHOENIX, COLLEGE OF INFORMATION SYSTEMS & TECHNOLOGY

Ideas are the new currency of business. We live in an era in which anyone with a dream and ambition can take an idea and bring it to life through digital technology. This liberation has fueled the spread of creative and collaborative solutions to daily problems for both businesses and individuals. Routinely, new technologies are being introduced with the potential — for better or worse — to change industries as we know them.

While new technologies are emerging as quickly as the blink of an eye, the U.S. workforce is stalled, impeded by a lack of access to the real-time knowledge and technical skills needed to keep pace with the changing nature of their positions, companies and industries. As technology becomes an increasingly integral part of business, the right training is critical to bridging this gap. If technology is the catalyst that launches industries forward and innovative ideas are the currency of 21st century business, then how do professionals across all industries make themselves more employable? Trough ongoing professional development and certificates.

Certificate programs are an efficient educational opportunity that can replace the potentially daunting prospect of a four-year degree program or graduate school, and allow workers to continue building on their expertise throughout their lives. Depending on the industry, certificates that provide specific skills training and specializations can even be more influential with hiring managers than graduate degrees.

Certificate programs can help garner enhanced opportunities and recognition, while helping professionals keep up with changes in the field. Advanced certificates in IT can help create an accomplished professional, and allow them to go above and beyond their day-to-day responsibilities to see the big picture for their organization.

INCREASING INTERNAL BUSINESS FUNCTIONALITY WITH IT SKILLS

IT certificates aren’t just for professionals in the IT field. IT certificates can help HR understand how to attract and retain the best talent and how to develop programs that lead to a forward-thinking and innovative work environment. An effectively managed HR department is critical for recruiting top talent and firing up the potential of an organization’s workforce. Talent management can be one of the most expensive and important functions a company undertakes. Attracting innovative individuals with diverse skill sets is critical for maintaining a competitive edge. Yet, despite its importance, many organizations’ current HR systems and practices have been in place for years. Enterprise software can quickly become obsolete as new systems ignite change in the industry, putting the business at a competitive disadvantage when trying to recruit.

As technology continues to move HR functions online, it’s imperative these professionals understand how to leverage this technology to support and improve underlying HR processes. IT certificates can help HR professionals understand how to select, implement and control systems and data to increase productivity and profitability.

USING IT TO ENHANCE CUSTOMER SERVICE IN TODAY’S TECHTOPIA

Consumers in the 21st century have hit the jackpot when it comes to customer service experiences. Digital platforms have made it easier for consumers to create their own custom experiences across service industries, including shopping and travel. While this is great for the customer, technology has made it more complicated for industry professionals to monitor feedback and provide the best service experience.

Pursuing IT certificates can help customer service professionals understand customer behavior and preferences, and help them create strategic plans to build loyalty and increase business profitability. If customer service employees can anticipate consumer sentiment and knowledge, interactions can be enhanced to establish better connections and create a more positive customer experience.

EDUCATION IS EVOLVING TO EMPLOYEE NEEDS

For those who want to continue their education and enhance their tech savvy, new learning environments are innovating to allow for professionals to choose not only what they learn, but how they learn. To adapt to the times, many online and brick-and-mortar institutions of higher learning are marshalling resources and creating unique IT certificate programs calibrated to meet employer demands, while also accommodating working-adult students who balance their studies with families and fulltime careers.

For more information about University of Phoenix programs, including on-time completion rates, the median debt incurred by students who completed the program and other important information, please visit: phoenix.edu/programs/ gainful-employment.

Published in Ideas

How to Teach the Missing Basics to Today’s Young Talent

BY BRUCE TULGAN

There is an ever-widening “soft skills gap” in the workforce, especially among the newest young workforce, the second-wave Millennials otherwise known as “Generation Z” (born 1990-2000).

I say this based on more than two decades studying young people in the workplace: The incidence and insistence of managers complaining about the soft skills of their new young workers has risen steadily year after year since we began tracking it in 1993. It affects workers of all ages, but is most prevalent among the newest youngest people in the workforce.

Today’s newest young people in the workplace have so much to offer, yet too many of them are held back because of their weakness in a whole bunch of old-fashioned basics: non-technical skills ranging from “self-awareness” to “people skills,” especially communication, as well as “critical thinking” and “problem solving.”

Here’s the question everybody asks: Are the relatively weaker soft skills of today’s young workers the result of having grown up thinking, learning and communicating while permanently attached to a hand-held supercomputer?

Surely, that is part of the story.

Gen-Zers are the first true “digital natives,” born in a never-ending ocean of information — an information environment defined by wireless Internet ubiquity, wholesale technology integration, infinite content and immediacy. Gen-Zers are always totally plugged in to an endless stream of content and in continuous dialog — forever mixing and matching and manipulating from an infinite array of sources to create and then project back out into the world their own ever-changing personal montage of information, knowledge, meaning and selfhood. They try on personas, virtually. Social media makes it easy to experiment with extreme versions of one persona or another; more or less (or much more) crass means of expression.

Gen-Zers are perfectly accustomed to feeling worldly and ambitious and successful by engaging virtually in an incredibly malleable reality — where the stakes can seem all-important one moment, until the game is lost and reset with the push of a button in a never-ending digital dance, by projecting their uniquely diverse persona(s) in their own highly customized virtual peer ecosystem.

But remember, it’s not just technology that has shaped this generation.

Every bit as much to blame is the helicopter-parenting on steroids that’s been the norm for Gen-Zers. They have spent much of their formative time ensconced in their own highly customized safety zones — the private comfort of protection and resources provided by responsible adults who are always supposed to be looking out for them. As a result, Gen-Zers are neither accustomed nor inclined to conform their attitudes and behavior for an institution or an authority figure (especially a non-parental authority figure).

As a result, a shocking number of young people today simply do not realize just how much “just doing their own thing” makes their attitudes and behavior maladaptive in the real world of the workplace. Most of them simply cannot fathom how much mastering some of the critical soft skills could increase their value as employees — not only right now, but for the remainder of their careers.

—Bruce Tulgan founded Rainmaker Thinking, a management training firm, in 1993. This article is adapted exclusively for Elearning! Magazine from his book of the same title.

Published in Ideas

Neurolearning Is ‘the Harmonious Blend Of Cognitive Psychology and Adult Learning Theory, Built Upon the Foundations of Modern User Experience.’

BY ANDREW FAYAD

It was author and education expert John Dewey who said, “We do not learn from experience. We learn from reflecting on experience.” It’s surprising to think that such a radical idea came from someone who was born in 1859. Dewey probably didn’t know it at the time, but his ideas were firmly rooted not only in human nature, but also in neurology. Today, we know much more about the brain and the way it adapts and learns, proving correct what may seem like an old-fashioned theory. Taking what we now know about the brain’s response to information, the 2015 approach to neurolearning hinges not on amazing graphics, high-tech modules or excellent delivery methods, but on the power to draw insight from your learners. Dewey was right: It’s insight — not experience — that propels education.

INSIGHT INTO NEURAL PATHWAYS

When learners grasp a concept with a deeper level of understanding, that insight actually has a biological effect on the brain. Insight activates the largest part of the brain: the cortex, which is responsible for both thought and action, so activation is a necessity for truly impactful learning. Most people think of the brain as a hard drive, where pieces of information can be stored individually and accessed when necessary. But the brain isn’t a hard drive, it’s a spider web. Each layer of learning connects to previous experiences, memories and past insight, creating an entire web of knowledge that is supported and connected to other parts of the brain. When you cause learners to go deeper than a shallow understanding, you physically thicken those connections between topics and memories for better recall. The stronger the connections, the better recall the learner has and the more effective the e-learning.

CAUSING REFLECTION

As Dewey said, there’s no learning without refection. But what does that really mean? In short, many e-learning initiatives are simply wasted because administrators and facilitators fail to give learners sufficient time to think about what they’ve learned, gain insight on the topic, and strengthen those neural pathways for later recall. When an e-learning module is over, learning managers simply move on, setting their learners up for “learning amnesia.”

Time for reflection doesn’t necessarily mean a quiet period for thought. Reflection refers to any activity or task that causes learners to reframe what they’ve learned in order to create a personal connection to the subject matter. Here are some modern ideas to apply to Dewey’s vintage advice:

>> Ask different questions. You know what you want your learners to get from a training session, so ask the right questions. What are the three objectives of a lesson, for example, or how could this be applied outside of the classroom?

>> Make engagement a choice. Forcing learners into the same learning path as everyone else can result in a tenuous connection at best. Instead, make engagement a choice: Offer different avenues for learning, so each type of individual has the chance to learn at his or her own pace and choose the topics and information that most interests him or her.

>> Find learning moments. The classroom shouldn’t be the only place for learning. By finding learning moments and encouraging learners to recall what they know, you cause them to reflect on their experiences and continue strengthening those neural connections.

A piece of advice that was uttered so long ago by Dewey may seem outdated, but when applied to modern neurolearning, it results in new insight and understanding. By pushing learners to autonomously do more than simply go through the motions of training, the post-class reflection, discussion and practice become the most important factor in turning learning into understanding and action.

—The author is CEO and managing partner of eLearning Mind.

Published in Insights

 

As the New Year is well under way, Americans are making strides to make their resolutions a reality, and it turns out that many plan on changing jobs in 2016. Of the working Americans who report that they will definitely change jobs, 50% are Millennials. The findings are part of the “2016 Industry & Productivity Perspectives Report” from business operating system Bolste, which commissioned accredited research firm YouGov to poll the views of a representative sample of 2,766 American adults.

Key findings from the 2016 Industry & Productivity Perspectives Report include:

>> 28% of working adults will contemplate changing jobs in 2016, with 15% speculatively looking for new opportunities.

>> 26% of working Americans are unhappy, unmotivated, not stimulated, bored and stifled, or indifferent with their current job.

>> American employees most commonly feel their employers don’t value their ideas (20%) and independent working skills (21%).

>> 22% of working professionals say half or more of the work emails they receive are irrelevant to them.

“Employee turnover is a huge strain on businesses and workers alike so it’s important to address the issue of workplace dissatisfaction. To remain competitive on the world stage, American business leaders need a way to evaluate their employees’ ideas, give proper feedback and equip their teams with tools and skills to manage projects efficiently,” says Leif Hartwig, CEO of Bolste.

Distracting Email

Email has been the default means of workplace communication for several decades, but overflowing inboxes are a cause of frustration for employees. More than one-fifth of working professionals say half or more of the work emails they receive are irrelevant to them. Additionally, 11% say as much as 75% or more of their inbox is filled with irrelevant emails. The problem with email is especially visible for those who work in the education sector, as 35% report that half or more of email received is irrelevant.

While face time is an important aspect of business and work, 14% of American workers feel that new employees at their company are faced with many pointless meetings to get them up to speed. Meanwhile, 21% say that their employers provide a cookie-cutter type manual for new employees, with 22% reporting that new hires are left to figure out things on their own.

 “We’re seeing a trend away from email and outdated, time-consuming workplace technology for technology’s sake. We will see more software built around helping professionals seamlessly collaborate and ultimately do their jobs better,” adds Hartwig. “Businesses have to respond to workplace shifts and be more flexible to meet the specific needs of their most valuable assets—their employees.”

—More info: www.bolste.com

 

Published in Top Stories

 

Why is most corporate learning not optimally effective? Many long-time L&D experts including Elliott Masie, Clark Quinn and Will Thalheimer have frequently lamented that much of the corporate learning they see is not really effective learning, because it is not mentally challenging.

By Bryan Austin

Like them, I’ve found the issue is not that learning professionals don’t know how to create learning that is challenging enough to be effective. Instead, it’s usually the harsh reality of the time, resource and cost constraints within which most learning professionals work.

Every organization provides training to its workforce primarily to improve performance and drive business growth. So let’s discuss some brain science and how to leverage it to create learning that really engages learners and actually improves performance.

BRAIN SCIENCE FOR LEARNING EFFECTIVENESS: A.G.E.S.

A.G.E.S. is an outgrowth of neuroscientific research that examines the link between training retention and how strongly each learner’s brain is activated during training. The A.G.E.S. model focuses on four key categories that reduce distraction during training and dramatically improve retention:

Attention (focus) - Are your employees prone to multi-tasking during training? For the brain to fire at the level required to transfer learning from short-term memory to long-term memory (that is, necessary for retention to happen), learners need to pay close attention during a learning task. Deep focus is a critical factor for learning retention. Employees will engage if they intuitively understand how the learning is relevant to their success. Engagement is making the learning (and the brain!) active, not passive.

Generation (each learner makes his or her own meaning) - This means taking the “active” learning described above to the next level. Learners must generate their own mental links as they learn, not just passively listen. Training will be highly retained when learners create their own mental context to embed the knowledge.

This is most effectively done by involving multiple senses during learning. Not watching or reading, but thinking, listening, speaking and doing. If our training uses multiple senses (like playing an interactive game), we are activating different sets of the brain’s neural circuits to more tightly embed the meaning each learner creates during that learning.

Emotions (better recall) - The stronger the emotions each learner feels during training, the higher their retention of the material will be. These emotions can be either positive or negative. How can your training engender feelings of success? Or fear of failure? Are the majority of your employees inherently competitive? Trigger that competitiveness to create learning experiences that makes them want to win. Or avoid losing.

Spacing (learning blocks) - Remember how you “crammed” for that big test in school? This was effective in massing a large amount of knowledge, but only for short-term memory. Long-term recall/retention improves dramatically when we learn over several sittings. The longer employees must remember the knowledge that makes them successful, the more learning must be spaced out.

How often does your training initiative include a reinforcement strategy that extends well beyond the foundation training? Unfortunately, most strategic corporate training initiatives are more of a “Big Bang” with little to no reinforcement. Spaced repetition is key to learning effectiveness and retention.

BOTTOM LINE

The A.G.E.S. model in neuroscience is essential to create more effective learning. The best part: there are now technology solutions built around A.G.E.S. that can enable your organization to produce “A.G.E.S.-level learning” within the time, resource and cost constraints you face.

—Bryan Austin is vice president at mLevel, which produces award-winning game-based learning. More info: www.mlevel.com.

 

Published in Insights

Survey says learning leaders should be preparing their employees for the future as well as the here-and-now.

By Chris Osborn

Each year, multiple organizations publish reports about the state of the training industry featuring data points developed by asking questions from the organizational perspective. The value of some of that benchmarking should not be diminished. It’s important to know that investments in employee training are rising, and that organizations are telling the industry that they are making a certain amount of training available to employees, and that some training topics are more important than others. But we think another perspective is important, too.

Now consider nearly every other industry. How do they report on their health and vitality? How about electronics? Automotive? Telecommunications? Entertainment? Without exception, every other industry asks its consumers about the products and services it delivers to gauge the effectiveness and health of its respective industry. How much credibility would any of us give a report about the state of the cable industry, if the only people surveyed are cable providers? Aren’t we really most interested in how the consumers of cable services feel?

Since there isn’t much widely published data on what consumers (employees) of the training industry’s products and services think, we thought that kind of research would be invaluable. Therefore, starting in early June of this year and running until early August, BizLibrary gathered 1,821 survey responses from employees about their employer-provided training programs. The respondents answered three strategic questions:

1  How effective is your employerprovided training program at teaching you new things?

2  How effective is your employerprovided training program at improving your performance?

3  How effective is your employerprovided training program at preparing you for the future?

The responses were separated into two broad categories: 1,002 who work at organizations that are not clients of BizLibrary, and 819 who work at BizLibrary clients (the “control group”). For the purposes of this conversation, it’s less important who provides the solution. What is relevant is the type of solution the employees use. The control group uses a solution with the following characteristics:

>> Heavy emphasis on technology-enabled learning
>> Video-based content >> Primarily micro-learning (seven minutes is average length of the most recently added 2,500 courses)
>> A completion average of 4.8 courses per month
>> LMS’s that are designed expressly to maximize impact of video
>> LMS and video that’s all fully mobileready and mobile-optimized
>> A wide selection of content topics, and generally a high awareness of content availability
>> Minimum of 5,000 courses, and in some organizations 14,000-plus video courses
>> Low emphasis on ILT, though most organizations use some classroom instruction

The broader public participants reported a wide range of content-delivery tools, with ILT being the dominant form. The public participants reported some access to technology-enabled learning including traditional e-learning (click-and-advance PowerPoint-style courseware), virtual classroom and online videos. These participants generally reported fewer content options than the control group. In other words, the public participants generally reported access to traditional employee training programs.

THE RESULTS

Question 1: How effective is your employer’s training program at teaching you new things?

Employee learning is about acquiring new skills and knowledge. For training programs, this should be a foundational competency. Every employee learning program should be effective or very effective at teaching employees new things.

The chart on the below compares the responses for the public participants to the control group in response to Question 1.

 

trainingfeaturegraph1

 

There are significant differences between the public responses and the control group responses. When we combine the responses “Very Effective” and “Effective,” control group employees report that their training programs are 23.77% more effective at teaching them new things than nonclient employees (69.79% to 56.39%). The negative ratings are also lower.

Question 2: How effective is your employer’s training program at helping improve your performance?

Employees should perform at higher levels of mastery after they have been trained. That’s a given. Unfortunately, not all training programs deliver improved performance, and the survey confirms that employees believe many programs substantially under-perform.

Once again, the difference in the top two tiers, “Very Effective” and “Effective,” are striking. The control group employees report they believe their training programs are “Very Effective” or “Effective” at helping improve their performance at a combined rate of 66.41%, but 50.90% of public employees report the same levels of effectiveness for their employers’ training programs. The difference is 30.47% (66.41% “Very Effective” and “Effective” combined, compared to 50.90%).

Question #3: How effective is your employer’s training program at preparing you for the future?

Control group employees report even greater disparities in how their training programs help prepare them for the future: 34.99% better than their peers at other companies. In the top two tiers, 58.33% of employees at control group companies say their training program is either “Very Effective” or “Effective” at preparing them for the future. Only 43.21% — less than half — of the public participants said the same thing.

Of the three strategic questions in the survey, this question about preparing employees for the future elicited the fewest positive responses across the board. This ought to be an area of concern for all of us in the learning and development and training industry. Teaching employees new things and improving performance are outcomes that benefit our organizations in the here-and-now. However, preparing employees for the future is something that we should be working toward for the ongoing success of our organization.

The top graph below summarizes the differences between the public responses and the responses of control group employees. When the survey was launched, we did not expect to see this much of a difference between the perceptions of the control group (BizLibrary client employees) and employees at non-client organizations. The differences are real and rather dramatic — the product of substantive distinctions between the ways employees access learning resources. We believe this because we asked some details about the training programs of the survey participants.

 

trainingfeaturegraph2

 

Doubtless, much more research is needed. In fact, you can learn more about this research at http://goo.gl/crrCo5. But we need data on actual performance.

Data from this survey tells us an important story about what employees think — and they don’t think traditional training programs work very well. Employees tell us to give them more choices, more video and to minimize the use of classroom delivery. Does this data prove the effectiveness of the methods employees prefer? Not conclusively, but when employees are engaged in the training methods, there is a far greater likelihood of success than when they are checked out and not engaged in boring, out-of-date training methods.

SUMMARY, CONCLUSION

Think carefully about critical jobs and professions that most organizations need. They rely on professionals with expertise in Web design, user interface, social media recruiting, and inbound marketing. More jobs or critical job skills (depending upon your specific industry) are likely “hard to find.” Some of these jobs and skills simply did not exist as recently as five years ago. The reality of today will certainly not be the reality of tomorrow. That’s why it’s so important we help employees — and, by extension, our organizations — prepare for the future. We can get ahead of some of this by shifting our training efforts to develop skills and competencies around things like adaptability, learning agility and change leadership. If we can make that strategic shift in our development focus, we might see the next round of answers to this question be more favorable.

—The author is vice president of Marketing for BizLibrary

Published in Top Stories

 

Talent management practices should be more transparent, according to a new study. In a survey of 518 directors, managers and employees, 71 percent of respondents said their organization should be more open about which employees are in their company’s talent pool.

Seventy-three percent of respondents said it is apparent that some individuals get treated differently in terms of career development and progression opportunities within their organization.

Fifty-four percent of all workers surveyed said that their organization doesn’t recognize their full potential, and even 38 percent of those who are in a talent pool said their full potential is not recognized. Thirty-six percent of all respondents said their company does not track or manage their personal or career development.

Of the 23% of respondents surveyed who are currently in a talent pool, 81 percent said this motivates them to perform their job better. Meanwhile, 35 percent of those who are not in a talent pool feel demotivated as a result, reinforcing the need for clearer communications and enterprise-wide career and personal development strategies so that everybody feels supported and valued, regardless of whether they are in a talent pool or not.

—Download the full report: www2.kallidus.com/Talent-SecretSociety-SM

 

Published in Latest News

Optimism and confidence about the outlook for the talent development function in organizations rose in the third quarter of 2014. The current Learning Executive Confidence Index (LXCI) surveyed 351 learning executives (LXs) about these key learning and talent development indicators: Ability to Meet Learning Needs, Impact on Corporate Performance, Perception of the Value of Learning, and Availability of Resources. The only indicator not to improve between the second and third quarter was Availability of Resources.

The Association for Talent Development's (ATD) LXCI for the third quarter of 2014 was 66.9, a gain of more than a point over the second quarter score of 65.7. The general optimism shown by learning executives mirrored trends in the economy. Although the U.S. economy stalled in the first quarter of 2014, the economy recovered in the second quarter, seeing growth in both fixed business investments and inventory investments, which suggest a positive business outlook.

Key findings from the third quarter of 2014:

>> Overall, more than three-quarters of learning executives have positive expectations.

>> Learning executives' confidence in their ability to meet their organizations' key learning needs during the coming six months rose about two points, the largest improvement seen for any indicator, from 67.1 in Q2 2014 to 69.4 in Q3 2014.

>> Learning executives are least optimistic about having availability of resources needed to meet learning needs in six months. The indicator decreased from 57.1 in Q2 2014 to 56.4 in Q3., this is the only indicator that saw a downward shift from last quarter.

>> More than half of learning executives think that continued economic growth will lead to an increase in the creation of new learning content, coaching/mentoring, emphasis on learning, and learning services provided.

ATD's Learning Executive Confidence Index was launched in August 2008 and is designed to assess the outlooks and expectations of learning executives for the next six months; it is measured on a 100-point scale.

—Read full report: www.astd.org/Professional-Resources/LXCI

Published in Top Stories
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