Are Learning Programs in Your Organisation Fail-Proof? 0

A strategic architect and innovator of path- breaking HR initiatives, Madhuri Gupta is the Senior Manager of Corporate Human Resources at Kreate Energy (I) Pvt. Ltd. Over the last 9 years, she has spearheaded talent acquisition, performance management, employee relation initiatives, and set priorities for improving the competence of Kreate’s workforce. With strong interpersonal and leadership skills, she has also catered to policy design and implementation, PMS, new hire operations, onboard processing, employee grievance, and R&R.

Learning programs in organisations are aimed to upskill employees and help them grow in the age of disruption. But how many of these programs are actually successful? How many of them actually help employees go up the ladder? Let’s implore.

A prudent organisation values its people as the greatest competitive advantage and key differentiator. Hence, at the core of every organisation’s culture-building process lies the Learning and Development or L&D strategy, which focuses upon the enhancement of its employees’ competencies.

As a strategic business priority, organisations should align L&D as an advisory unit to dial up the leadership and readiness velocity across roles. It also needs to be cohesively aligned with the HR vision for optimal efficiency. Thereby, L&D professionals must be well equipped to understand organisational nuances and dynamics.

According to L&D’s key strategic roles that span five areas, the participants must gain hands-on experience of applying timeless principles for greater productivity, improved communication, strengthened relationships, increased influence, and a sharper focus on critical priorities. In order to understand the root cause of challenges relating to employee performance, an L&D team must find the “weak link” and observe patterns across the organisational culture. Apart from fail-proof learning programs, fail-proof functioning is also of paramount importance.

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As an organisation, KREATE stands for the idea of FAIL is First Attempt In Learning, and to embody this thought process we’ve introduced KLASSTM (Kreate Learning Academy Solutions) in early-2018, an in- house Learning Academy with the vision to uplift the potential of our employees and bolster an open and innovative organisational culture. Our in-house learning programs are a) aligned with the vision of the organisation, b) mapped according to our competency framework, c) driven by business leaders, and d) engage employees in boosting their confidence and motivation.

From our recent MDP program on excel effectiveness for managerial decisions to the technical program on CSS, digital eLearning program on proactive communication to the mentoring session on Blockchain technology, seminars, webinars and TED talks, we ensure that the learning channels never go haywire.

As organisations, we must realize that high-impact solutions are capable of accommodating the unique and diversified learning needs of employees at different levels. For example, senior-level executives require specialized approaches like executive coaching and customized learning designs, while for first-time managers, common developmental needs are standardized, and scalable solutions are provided. Furthermore, mid- level roles require a mix of various solutions.

Going back to classroom learnings from theories of motivation, we must ask whether the L&D strategies in place are genuinely bringing out the best in our people. The approach has to help them overcome personality detailers and challenges relating to motivational and emotional quotient.

Concepts and theories relating to organisational behaviour should be key to any organisations skill- building endeavours. Learning programs should be customised according to the culture, values and perceptions within the organisation. Furthermore, top leaders should dedicatedly put efforts and help in generating the right learning program value.

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As we speak of values with regard to learning programs, it is safe to say that this is an era where analytics are restricted to simple reporting. Learning programs must be aligned with the right talent analytics and business values. For instance, do we evaluate the value of skill gain, impact to salary hours, total benefits and benefit to cost ratio after a planned learning program? Do we analyse the learner’s sharing knowledge on platforms, learners being our brand accelerators by increasing Net Promoter Scores or strong causation (not only correlation) impacting attrition and engagement scores? Essentially, a planned intervention with the right approach is what creates a learning value for all stakeholders.

As per the latest research by Development Dimensions International (DDI), two of the major challenges that organisations face today relate to – aligning people strategies with business objectives, and driving culture changes. Without this alignment, businesses fail to create a culture that reflects their values. The outcome? Innovation suffers, customer loyalty declines, and growth objectives are missed. Organisations should leverage a competency-based mechanism in order to establish a common understanding of excellence and expected leadership amongst people. The need is to audit the overall organisational capabilities and skill levels of the employees and customise their development plan accordingly. The enhancement of competencies enables better performance management as well as reward and recognition systems, which in turn lead to career and succession planning programs for holistic & complete integration.

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