Scaling Learning in Your Organization (LCC 02 – E 04)

LCC 2 - Scaling Learning in Your Organization

In this highlight from the round table discussion, the learning leaders discuss how to scale learning in your organization.

Transcript to Follow Along

Andrew Barry

Switch to the next, the final topic, because I think we’ve also everything we’ve said, like Lisa was saying is kind of expanded. It’s like, it’s one learner. But how do we get this across to all learners? And we all, you know, everyone here is part of very large organizations and so and growing and so how do we scale learning, some of you have talked about, to me in the past about cohorts and you know, in a cohort together, Celine, you know, using codes and breakout rooms was apparently got really good feedback on that. So I’m going to send you into breakout rooms, and I’m going to give you like five to five or seven minutes to talk about taking this, all these good things we’ve talked about, how do we scale that to the whole company?

What is a good sign when everyone stays till the very last second of the break.

Marsha Parker

We’re just getting started.

Andrew Barry

It’s never long enough. Yeah. All right. So he wants to share what the discussion was about.

Marsha Parker

I guess I’ll go, you know, we, I started off by saying that we scale with leading by teaching, so our leaders are really champions and leading, and especially with a global company, because we have just to give you some complexities about the size of where we are 200,000 employees, and 116,000 of those hourly. And then the rest are contract purchase service and salary employees. So when you think about it, the scalability of it has to be universal, but not so tightly because our global regions have their own training that they do and their own languages. And I mean, there’s so many complexities to it, and so many vendors we work with. So we found that leading by teaching helps us to get to shape up those leaders that can teach, but also give us a pool of people that we can pull on to be able to help facilitate especially our leadership programme, and move away from formal instructor led training with vendor late, you know, by led by vendors to get to this leading by teaching. But then we say not all leaders are the same, you know, you have some good ones, you got some bad ones. So that’s been some kind of pluses and minuses. But that’s one approach that we’ve used a scaler for scalability is leading by teaching.

Andrew Barry

Just a quick follow up question on that. What does that look like today? Does it encourage to do their own lunch and learns or like,

Marsha Parker

So it’s supposed to be organic, we are leaders are rise to the to the top of the you know, who rise to the top of the occasion I treated as individuals who are experts like in their domain or expertise. And we have a pool of them that we call upon to be able to coach and mentor other groups. And this is done a lot more through mentoring than it is formal training. We’re seeing a lot more of mentoring come across and formal training and trying to use it in that aspect. Yeah. So that’s kind of how it’s been shaped up now, especially since COVID. And globally to so now used to be just north america centric. Now it’s all anybody around the world can join these mentoring sessions and discussions, and they can teach each other how to do Python. I’m seeing a lot of that in the technical space, especially as we up ramping our content libraries around degree, you know, around LinkedIn learning Pluralsight Coursera, people are taking these opportunities to use some of this off the shelf shelf materials really shape a mentoring session around it, and just guide people do the discussion to how they would apply it. Interesting. Wow.

Andrew Barry

That’s the first I’ve heard of something like that. And it seems like it’s working

Marsha Parker

in pockets, you know, um, I think we need to get a little bit better at it if we’re going to really scale learning in the shape. And how we define learning now has changed too. So now I can have a conversation at the water water cooler, or on zoom, or WebEx with my leader. That’s a learning opportunity. My performance discussion is a learning opportunity. So now what we’re classifying as learning has changed, the definition of learning has changed to

Andrew Barry

fantastic to hear that. That’s very good. Yeah. Um, Lisa wanted want to get your thoughts, because I know from private prior experience, and I think Andy would probably attest to this with those with the professional services firms, like, you know, you built an entire campus, we would do a lot of travelling to go to locations and do training and it was that was how to scale it was like a huge thing, right? Hundreds of people that would go How are you guys now trying to do the same, you know, touch that many people but in a kind of a virtual setting.

Lisa O’Donnell

Yeah, I mean, it’s been a challenge, obviously. COVID has been through us all on our heads. topsy turvy. Um, but one of the things I shared in our group twos, I don’t think it’s just COVID that we’ve always had to consider scalability. And I’m assuming a PVC is similar. But a lot of what we do in the last few years has really been focused on partnering with our global learning and development team. And thinking about designing solutions that worked for a big us firm, but also a very tiny and I kept using Bermuda like a firm like Bermuda, it’s much smaller, less resources. How do you design the same piece of content that applies in both situations and can be scaled up to a huge centre, but down to a conference room, or a zoom call or a Skype call? You know, whatever that is. I do feel like COVID has pushed us to really evaluate, like what has to be instructor led, what is super critical instructor led, and I do believe that there are some things that are more valuable instructor led, but you know, it’s not maybe as big or as broad as we initially thought. And there’s a lot of ways you can effectively deliver content in a smaller micro learning a smaller video a smaller, you know, performance support resource, something like that. That can be just as effective and give people what they need in the moment of need. Ya know, Andy, if you have to add on to that tune? Yes,

Andy Spector

I do. Yeah. And I can share the programme that I worked on, I was called the digital accelerator programme, which which we started a few years ago, where we had upskill people in topics such as like mentioned, AI and data analytics, which involves Python, things like that. So we had it was virtual it was it was basically a cohort based. And they would go through training virtually. But they had lessons. And they would also have to do projects, as I’m a huge proponent of, especially when you’re doing technical skills that you need a project to do it. Yeah. And so they had that, and they had team projects, or they work together. So is a combination of sort of virtual, where they would learn this. And then there was a in person events as well, where they meet up and discuss these things and share share the work that they’ve done. And then we have a badging programme, that’s a little more formal, where after they complete the learning itself, and then they also apply it to their job, then they can get different types of badges that they can earn, as well. So we had a pretty robust process and still ongoing right now. Where it’s, again, blended, it was a blended learning solution. We’re able to do, how big were the cohorts? And how did you measure that people are applying the knowledge on the job? Yeah, so overall, it was each class, each cohort was around two to 300 people. And then we in terms of try, we tracked it, I mean, we had all the metrics are able to track their progress. And we also track to see who we’re getting back because badges were not, they’re not mandatory, they’re optional. So we could see. And there’s different types of badges. There was a skill badge, which is, which is where they’re actually applying the learning. But there was also just that knowledge badge, which was them just doing the training itself. And so we we have dashboards and things like that, where we’re actually tracking the progress across the board.

Andrew Barry

Interesting. Alec, you you’ve mentioned to me before that you guys always use cohorts. Uh,

Alec Miller

yeah, we always do cohorts, because I’m, honestly, because I don’t have enough time to do like individual training, right? So we always just kind of group everybody together, we were doing new hires, and like every two weeks or so and hiring was on a regular cadence. And then cohorts workout. Great, right, because your peer to peer learning, as Marsha had mentioned before, you got your friends there, or your peers that you can rely on to ask questions to if you don’t want to go to the instructor and stuff like that. I will say going back to what I think it was Lisa, Marcia, that was just mentioning it. It was saying, Oh, we we’ve tried to figure out like what has to be done in person and what doesn’t? I absolutely agree. There’s a lot of stuff that I teach, that doesn’t have to be done in person. In fact, my, my leader, my directors, getting me to record more and more videos, so we can send those out to people for micro learning. The problem is going back to the first point of discussion, motivating orders who say they don’t have time for training. And I’m pointing to my OneNote, I’m sorry, the addresses pointing off in space. Um, the by I found even with new hires coming into the company with no straight tasks or projects to work on right away, if I give them a list of training to complete, but no, set time to do it. It doesn’t get done. Similarly, or it will get done but it is not as you know, done as rapidly. Similarly, if I say you’re going to attend a class with me, we’re going to do this. They’ll come to the class, there’s like an accountability piece there with a live instructor. Whereas if I said instead of attending the class, here’s a video of exactly the class everything I would say you can watch it at your own pace. I’ve done this before. I’ve asked people to do it. Have you watched the video? No, I haven’t had time I had, if I had those two hours on their calendar, they would have done it, you know what I’m saying. And I even do things where, for example, to earn a certification for this one class we do. When I first started teaching it, I would teach four sessions and then assign the certification exam and say, Go forth and complete it whenever you want. People were not completing it. Now I have the four classes, and I have a fifth session where I tell people, I’m literally not going to do anything, I’m going to be on the call and answer emails and ignore you guys. But I’m going to be on the call. And you’re gonna have two hours, it is going to be called exam taking time, and people come and they take that test, you know what I mean? It’s something like carving out that time really makes it purposeful. And although I completely agree with I think it was Lisa, that said, are trying to find what doesn’t have to be taught in person. A lot of times that comes down to like a bottom line thing. I’m the main trainer, there’s only one of me, where do I spend my hours? Right?

Alec Miller

I literally have a trainer people, I swear they, they pay attention more, they’re more accountable.

Andrew Barry

Yeah interesting. Celine, You talked about you guys use a lot of the cohorts. And you said to me last, when we spoke that you got a lot of positive feedback about breakouts like we just did now like, yeah, how’s that working out for you guys? And the sad thing about this the live element the lot because it actually I haven’t used the word with it. But it’s live cohorts, right, that that’s kind of an important element of it.

Celine Jeremiah

Yeah, so it’s good. And I think that the thing that we really need to do now is think about how we can continue to scale it more and more. But I think that similar to what we’ve kind of talked about already, people really enjoy being able to talk things out and share what they know and exchange knowledge because it feels active, and it feels like they’re really actually learning. So the breakouts have been the single, this will backtrack a little bit, something that I’ve been running with a certain portion of our organisation are these lunch and learns that are combination of leader lead and breakout. So we have a leader who does a little bit of kind of like an AMA, and it’s really short, it’s like 15 minutes of an AMA on a certain topic that’s really relevant to those teams. And then we have a breakout activity that’s very related to that topic. So the one that we just did was on empathetic leadership. And we had a sales leader who she spoke about her, basically experienced as a leader and what she had to say, this ama, she was, again, something that the teams were able to put in questions for. And then the breakouts was actually we had some role playing, of having those situations where you know, you have an employee who’s being who has been really difficult, and you need to talk to talk to them, talk them through, you know, like, what’s happening, what’s not there, we’re, I think three or four different scenarios that they could choose from, and we try to really tailor it to things that we thought those teams were going to find relevant in their everyday lives. And so I think going back to your question about the breakouts, it’s really just being able to give them that active experience. And then at the end of it, there’s a call to action to meet with the, with their groups, again, if they want to check in on certain things. I think that’s actually the piece that hopefully continues on and I need to I’ve checked when checked in with a few groups. And I do know there are some groups that have continued to meet. I don’t think it happens all the time. So if anyone has a solution to that, I would love to hear it. But I think that there are people who do come back together and kind of continue learning in that small group. And to Alex’s point, it’s really about just creating accountability, because when you know someone else is going to be on the call, you kind of actually feel like you have to do it. Yeah.

Andrew Barry

That’s such a huge, it’s like, I think that’s this thing like scaling online learning, people may think, well, we need to bring tech. Tech is the way to scale. But I think it’s actually if you get down to the human relationship here, you can scale it much quicker, right? Like you saying, it says accountability groups, it’s the building of those relationships, that they keep meeting and they keep checking in with each other. That’s actually I think, how you make a meaningful change. So very, very cool that that’s working for you guys. I’d love to you kind of shared a good couple of examples. I’d love to use the last 10 minutes and kind of go around for too much and do something. Yeah.

Andy Spector

I was gonna say something, but but go ahead.

Andrew Barry

No, go for it. Go for it.

Andy Spector

I think the one of the things we I think we know Andrew for rite of passage, and I think from my own experience to a PwC is the power of community and having the community platform as well. And get, you know, which we can talk about, I think you have a great honour to promote you. I think you have a great article on group learning. That sort of applies experiences that you learn from rite of passage, I think is a great article for all for everybody to read.

Andrew Barry

Yeah, thank you. And that’s, um, I’ll post that in the channel. But that’s um, the off topic groups is where you talk about people can like get to know each other and like as Christians and Yeah, the sub one of the companies I’m working with the you will know probably Celine. They use slack a lot for their no has like separate channels for these cohorts but the learning calls and so people can just kind of keep in touch with each other and there’s some prompts that they send them like throughout the year to go in and use that channel as well. So, see we have another guest awesome.

 

 

LCC 2 - Scaling Learning in Your Organization
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