“Earn while you learn and learn while you earn”. it is a new mantra of success. Times have changed and the more you learn, more learned, dynamic and wiser you become for the competitive world today. The corporate industry is undergoing continuous change. People are creative and imaginative today. With more open thinking and creativity being encouraged, there is more openness in society and developing more skills and continuous learning is encouraged. Learning may be in any field, earlier calculations were limited to calculators only, then there were Excel sheets, now there is data analysis, R and SAS etc. These applications have not only simplified the understanding of data, but they have also made it easy for management to understand and forecast the upcoming possibility of situations that may arise.
Continuous learning encourages employees. When management promotes learning as a culture in the organization, employees feel valued and important, which in turn improves productivity and reduces redundancy. Improving skill set and continuous learning not only improves employees’ capability but also improves the organization’s capability. It is through continuous learning and development, employees’ are better ready for the next level, next promotion, and next venture. Employees must not expect that they should get promoted only because they have been at a particular level for some years, rather promotion to a next level should be given only because an employee has shown improved skills which has brought improvement in job process or there is value addition in the organization.
Skilling and continuous learning should be an organization’s initiative also. It must be primarily be encouraged by the business leader, functional managers and finally be executed by HR Managers and HR leaders.
Skill Development and Continuous Learning should have the following objectives:
Important to Organization: Organization must first assess, the vision and objective of the organization and accordingly develop the human capital pool. For example, if the organization is a consulting organization, its main focus should be on capturing the right data, data analysis, and data forecasting. Accordingly, the appropriate training must be imparted to employees at different levels. If the organization is a project-based organization, its employees should be encouraged for business development and selling skills training also for communication and presentation skills training.
Assessment of right trainers and tools: Learning and development involve investment and hence right resources must be used. It is very important that right trainers for training programs must be appointed, Trainers must have the extensive subject knowledge, should be open to questions asked by trainees, must answer their queries with calmness and should satisfy them with their replies. The trainers must be dynamic and must bring value addition to the employees and the organization.
ROI on Learning and Development: As mentioned earlier, skilling and continuous learning is an investment by the organization towards its employees. The learnings must be implemented by the employees in their work. Training must benefit not only by employees but also benefit the organization and before and after effects of the training must be measured by the management.
Employee retention: Once an employee feels, he is developing himself and there is skill development and continuous development, he feels motivated towards working and wants to grow. He should be encouraged and this investment actually brings in returns. The employee wants to stay back with the company where he feels wanted and wants to grow.
With the improvement in skills and continuous learning, an employee grows not only in his intellect but also as a person. The employee develops more confidence; an employee does not feel he needs to get assurance from others. Betterment in skills improves his brand value not only in his present organization but also in the market. With the improvement in skills and continuous learning, an employee is more prepared for a different and difficult situation and problems that arise in the complex market.
With skilling and continuous learning, an employee develops and with this development in mind and intellect, he does become better than others. But what an employee needs to remember is, skills can be learned, developed and enhanced. Something that should not come with the learning is arrogance. With skill development, he may become more wanted in the market, but what is appreciated today is humility and down to earth attitude of a learned person.
It should be remembered that no matter how knowledgeable someone is, he will always need help and support of others to reach at the highest peak and therefore one must be humble, simple, down to earth and helpful to others. A skillful person must share his knowledge with his other team members and help others to grow.
Learning and innovation go hand in hand. The arrogance of success is to think what you did yesterday will be sufficient for tomorrow.