In developing a learning strategy, a critical aspect is how engaged the people are, and how they will play a role as the strategy builders and as the recipients of the strategy successes. People simply are the driving force behind every part of the strategy. Basically, as learning and performance professionals we state that the development of programs, courses, lessons, and knowledge objects is for the overt use of an individual who has a specific need to learn, refresh, or teach while engaged in a performance-measured task or function. This individual is our end user. A focus on the principles “Simple is better and less is more” is one over-arching objective when developing a learning or an e-Learning strategy. When faced with the building of a strategy, selection of key people from across the organization will be the most important decision to ensure success. For this reason a teaming approach seems to be best when developing a learning strategy.
Why involve people from Accounting, Operations, or even Sales for that matter? It’s simple, really… they are the people who will bring focused attention and a level of importance to the rest of the organization. This is an organization-wide strategy, and, as such, needs to have key people across the organization and within the executive level involved. Executive level sponsorship, ownership, and understanding are the single greatest assets for successful development and implementation of a learning strategy, as well as an e-Learning strategy. It is how you allocate resources, and it will enable
access across the organization.
In the past it has always been apparent that development and implementation of a learning strategy is established largely through a push from the top down, rather than from a user-focused, bottom-up approach. The reason for the top-down push has been for cost reduction, human capital realignment within the organization, large technology purchases, or to capture knowledge and information before it leaves the organization. Any learning and performance systems approach will begin to show significant return on value when the process is user-focused.
The job roles and functions of individuals and groups within the organization drive this approach. Learning and performance content developed from the users will have a significant impact on how work, and workers, are perceived and valued in the decisions they make and their role in the organization. This focus is directly associated with involving people from across the organization in developing the learning strategy.