The Importance of Learning and Development

Posted by April Parks, M.S. Conflict Management

Sep 15, 2015 11:00:00 AM

Learning-and-DevelopmentIn business, it’s always important to learn new things. Having a vast range of knowledge or having vast knowledge of specific content helps companies when they are in need. When a company can consult employees internally on what they already know, it saves them time and money. Instead of looking outside of the organization, they can easily and swiftly approach people on their team!

For this reason, it’s important that employers offer their workforce learning and development opportunities regularly. Offering learning to employees gives them a chance to increase their knowledge base of the work they are doing, which allows them to do a better, more complete job. It also benefits the employer in a few ways: as stated before, managers can consult people they already have when certain things arise. Second, it makes the company appealing. Many job searchers want to know that their employers support their growth and development and offering these opportunities to them is a perfect way to show that professional support. Third, offering learning helps with retention. Talented individuals that are high performing seek out opportunities to learn more and when their employer is actively engaging in their professional growth, their morale is higher and they are more likely to stay with the company.

Without a doubt, learning and development is crucial to a successful workplace. With millennials, age 18-34,  holding the most jobs in the American workforce at one in three jobs, the way learning and development is delivered is changing quickly and drastically. It’s critical that companies change the way they approach learning and development in order to keep the talent they have.

Here’s what your company should do to entice new talent to your company and to also retain current employees. Offer online learning opportunities. The old fashioned way of in class learning is a thing of the past. While it still holds value, allow employees to be more autonomous with their learning. Offering online avenues for learning gives them the ability to decide when they learn and what to learn. This gives individuals freedom to enhance and tweak their own learning or performance faults. Since millennials are the majority of the workforce, they want constant access. Create videos, information sharing forums and offer coaching for “any place, any time” learning. Managers should also work in congruence with their teams, acting as mentors to team leaders, as well as helping to decide individual goals for professional development.

With these points in mind, it’s also important that employers offer these development benefits from the start. Learning is crucial to a company’s success, so don’t hold out on your employees, start learning from the beginning. 

The top employers know “success requires more than waging a war to acquire talent; it requires that they strategically develop the talent they need to envision and execute the business strategies that will make them successful in the future.”

So, allow employees access to learning from the start, often, and on a regular basis. Success is not achieved without having employees reach their maximum potential. When you make learning and development readily available, employees will appreciate the support. With that will come higher workplace morale, higher productivity, and higher retention.  Be a company that attracts and develops great talent through offering the best learning opportunities. It will allow for extraordinary workplace talent and an overall successful company! 

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Topics: Learning Management