Article: Learning in sync: Importance of top down approach in learning

Learning & Development

Learning in sync: Importance of top down approach in learning

Let us have a close look at how this crucial function called Talent Development operates in today’s world.
Learning in sync: Importance of top down approach in learning

In today’s dynamic and competitive market environment, the most crucial resource for any organisation is Human Capital. We differentiate organisations based on human capital due to its intangible characteristics such as knowledge, skills, and motivations. These characteristics possessed by the employees tend to erode and become obsolete over a period, and therefore making it imperative to adapt to continuous learning. Thus, Talent Development plays an instrumental role in aiding human capital to explore its dexterity. 

Now, let us have a close look at how this crucial function called Talent Development operates in today’s world. “We’re flying the plane while we’re building it?” has become a standard business practice in many organisations working hard to stay ahead of the game. Chances are the Talent Development team doesn’t have the luxury to carefully plan and strategically execute learning programs. Hence, organisations often fail to implement trainings effectively due to lack of clear training strategy that aligns with the overall organisational strategy. This gives rise to lack of Accountability in the participants. Haphazard and routine age-old trainings fail to add value to the participants who are eager to learn new skills. While a good paycheck might have been enough for past generations, it will not help to engage the key talent in organisations today - Millennials. Millennials understand that changes in the economy are beyond their control, but their skill development is not. Here the Talent Development team should reflect by asking the question - Is our ladder leaning against the right wall?

As per a survey conducted by LinkedIn in 2018, “training on soft skills” was identified as #1 priority for Talent Development. The learning interventions which are designed keeping in mind the skill gaps, should also focus on the organisational strategies. Gone are the days when learnings were focused only on the values of the organisation. In modern times, learning programs should be designed keeping in mind the overall organisational strategy and the employees’ opinions shared in the employee engagement study. Aligning learnings basis this certainly helps to hit the nail on the head.

Typically, organisations focus on each management level in isolation and design learning programs accordingly. However, in this approach what one tends to miss is the bigger picture. While organisations are trying to drive a common objective, then why are learning interventions planned in isolation? For example - if an organisation wants to inculcate the behaviour of Driving Innovation, then the same should be conveyed to all employees at all management levels through different learning programs. As we progress from a management level to another, the training module structures may differ, but the focal point for all should remain the same. This approach helps employees to understand the area of focus for the organization. All the employees speak a common language and have a shared vision. Thus, improving Accountability, creating Ownership and ensuring Engagement.

Learning programs bring out the best in an employee and prepare an organisation for bigger tasks. Hence, the focus for Talent Development should be both - developing an individual as well as organisational capabilities. 


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Topics: Learning & Development, #GuestArticle

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