This is a guest post by Kevin Daniels, writer at LearnUp. 

There’s never been a better time to focus on developing your skills. As new technologies, platforms, and business opportunities open up, the one thing that will set successful people apart in the future is their continual adaptation to the changing world around them.

These people are at the heart of your business. More than products, channels, and strategies, smart and motivated people are the ones who make their companies successful. An investment in your people is never a wasted one.

An investment in your people is never a wasted one.

The challenge is that a lot of companies either don’t make the time for corporate learning and development, or they don’t know where to begin. 90% of organizations report that they do not have the skills they need to be successful, according to the McKinsey Global Institue Report. How can these companies catch up?

Corporate learning and development

Corporate learning and development is about making sure that your company’s intellectual capital is constantly evolving, renewed, enriched, and transferred. Corporate learning and development is essential for empowering teams, executing agile strategies, transforming business models, and spurring innovation.

And it’s changing

Traditionally, corporate learning and development programs have been built around content created and approved by “experts”. These are programs like corporate universities, training centers, boot camps, corporate learning management systems, and classroom training.

But technology has changed the way we learn in some drastic ways. Now, great information is available at the click of a search button on Google, video download, or Ted Talk — and for free! These new trends make it difficult for the traditional top-down model of corporate learning to thrive. Today’s employees want to learn in every and any way they can, and they’re not going to wait for a new corporate program to be rolled out to do it.

Giving people the learning environment they need

Smart companies are noticing this trend and placing the employee at the center of the continuous learning process. They are allowing employees to learn from each other, and creating a learning landscape for collective and collaborative problem-solving. Here are some things you can start doing today to promote corporate learning and development:

  • Establish a “lunch and learn series.” Everyone has something to teach, and everyone has something to learn. Do you have a superstar developer with a lot of knowledge to share? Give them a platform to host workshops during your company’s lunch hours.
  • Set up “learn by doing” spaces such as innovation labs, creativity rooms, and maker spaces that allow less experienced employees to learn by doing and prototyping products and services with more experienced experts.
  • Deploy learning communities where members share a common topic of interest and interact continuously with their peers through discussion forums, chat rooms, and video calls. This on-demand learning process is strengthened with community activities such as webinars and in-person trainings.
  • Use your internal wiki. Instead of adding a new learning management system, use your company’s intranet, like Confluence, to share knowledge among your team. Learners can discuss technical roadblocks and share ideas on various topics.
  • Establish recognition and rewards plans in order to make sure your learning strategy becomes a success. Rewards and recognitions help answer the “What’s in it for me?” questions that the learner content creators will ask. The incentives should also recognize the learners.

Make it happen with Learn Up for Confluence

LearnUp for Confluence (server) provides a user-friendly interface to take Confluence content and turn it into a structured learning ecosystem. Any Confluence user can create a course, attach enriched content such as videos and quizzes, and share it with the learners. Learners can access a Learning Hub where they can follow their courses at their own pace and ramp up their learning curve fast. See how you can use it for learning and development today.

Check our LearnUp for Confluence

How to make corporate learning and development work for your company