One thing we spotted in the interviews for this year’s Learning Insights report was a shift in the way we’re all talking about social learning. No longer a buzzword, it’s now understood – and desired - that our learners will naturally learn from each other. And that we can help that happen.
Last year we published Social Learning: How it works in the workplace. It talks about the idea that, if organisations are to nurture social learning, they need to step away from formal, traditional top-down structured delivery mechanisms - and towards a learning culture that empowers individuals to take ownership of their own learning needs. To develop social learning cultures requires a shift in control, or power, from the organisation towards the learner.
This year we’ve further developed our thoughts around this and have come up with the concept of ‘Learner Power’ to help make sense of what we mean.
Our idea is simple. To maximise the benefit of social learning and to make best use of the technological solutions available, organisations can refer to the Learner Power continuum to identify where their current learning culture sits - and where they want to be.
Learner Power is based on the premise that as organisations incrementally relinquish their own control of learning in the workplace, they proportionally increase the freedom an individual has to determine, support and drive their own learning needs.
We’re not suggesting it is all one-way traffic from one side to the other. We’re certainly not suggesting there is any right or wrong place to be. Every organisation will have a different culture and a different set of requirements, based on context. Our goal is simply to help you identify how best you can use social learning by identifying the approaches and tools that fit best with your needs, aspirations and culture.
Our hope is that Learner Power provides a language and a tool for you when it comes to integrating social learning into your wider learning and development strategy.
Watch this space for more of our thoughts on Learner Power.