Is training dead?

by Brett Henebery09 Mar 2017
Richard Maloney, founder and CEO of Engage and Grow, told L&D Professional that when it comes to using traditional methods of training to enhance learners’ skills, organisations shouldn’t even bother.

“Throughout my travels around the world these days talking with business leaders, the number one pain that L&D professionals are facing is employees are simply not interested in taking on the learning and development programs,” he said.

“It’s no surprise as the writing was on the wall seven years ago, but no one knew what to do, and most still don't.”

Maloney said that when it comes to developing leadership, employee engagement and culture, training is dead.

However, some training is still very important.

According to Maloney, the first thing that an L&D professional must do to enhance learner’s skills training is stop training and start engaging in a way that’s non-traditional – and also get rid of training all together.
“We’ve been surveying and observing for year, and it’s been reinforced by Bersin and Deloitte’s surveys, that no one wants to learn by being talked at, as we say here at Engage & Grow, training is dead,” Maloney said.

“Even workshops have been criticised for providing participants with “lab experience” rather than ‘real-life experience’.”

The way forward that Maloney and his team have found to make a huge difference is three-fold:

“First we create the right environment then get all the participants together and systematically let participants decide what they want to learn,” he explained.

“Then we get them to find the information themselves out in the real world, and finally we get them to teach it to each other.”

By giving them back complete power, Maloney said the engagement in the learning is heightened and therefore results show.

“By adding the ‘teach to learn’ element, we ensure that they retain the information they learn better and also enrich others, creating a ripple effect of learning,” he said.

“The quickest way for anyone to learn is via group discussions, open project experiences and then teaching each other along the way. I guess this is why we've expanded throughout so quickly, 59 countries in just 24 months.”

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