Creating A Culture Of Learning

Creating A Culture Of Learning
Summary: The way learning takes place in the workplace is changing. It is no longer about a single course or workshop that employees must take. It’s more than that. It’s about continuous learning and creating a culture of learning to support it. Developing a learning culture takes time, but it is worth the investment. Here are 9 actionable ways to create a culture of learning in your workplace.

9 Actionable Ways To Create A Culture Of Learning

To understand how a learning culture is formed, it’s important to understand how culture overall is developed. Workplace culture is the deeply ingrained identity of a company. While there is no set definition of what workplace culture is, the Society of Human Resources Management defines it as “the glue that holds an organization together. It is a silent code of conduct.” This glue is what subtly motivates your employees and drives the actions they take.

Whether you know it or not, your company already has a workplace culture. Even if you haven’t defined what your culture is, it has been shaped by your employees’ perceptions of the actions that leadership has taken and the values they hold. It is a manifestation of your organization’s beliefs, values, and norms, and it takes time to develop.

A Culture Of Learning

A learning culture is one that values and encourages learning. Developing a culture that supports learning is an investment, but it provides tremendous benefits for your organization. A learning culture is important because it helps you capitalize on your employees’ potential and grow your business. From employee engagement to increased productivity, a learning culture is something every organization should strive to develop.

Changing your workplace culture to one that supports learning is not something that happens overnight, but there are actionable steps you can take to move in the right direction. Here are 9 actionable ways to develop a culture of learning in your workplace:

1. Make Learning A Core Organizational Value

To successfully build a learning culture, your employees need to feel that leadership supports it. One way to do this is by making learning a clearly defined core value. Core values drive decision making and guide the actions organizations make. Committing to learning also means your company is making a commitment to provide the resources necessary to support employee Learning and Development.

2. Develop Personalized Learning Plans

Personalized learning plans make learning more relevant to your employees, and this turns learning into a journey. By setting learning goals and strategically developing a plan to achieve them, your employees will be more engaged in the process of learning. It no longer is about completing a course. It’s about the big picture and supporting your employees to help them reach their career goals.

3. Give Personalized Career Coaching

Many learning motivations stem from career ambitions. When organizations offer one-on-one coaching, they can help individuals identify career opportunities and develop personalized learning plans. Coaching, in particular, can also be an effective way to guide self-directed learning in the right direction, explore available resources, and hold your learners accountable.

4. Lead By Example

Organizational leaders at all levels are often in an influential position. If you are engaged and dedicated to your own continuous learning, it reinforces a learning culture. Some ways you can do this are by setting your own learning goals, talking about training you’ve taken, being willing and open to corrections and feedback, and reflecting on mistakes made.

5. Provide The Right Rewards

When introduced right, rewards can go a long way in supporting building a learning culture. These may be soft rewards like publicly recognizing a learner’s success or hard rewards like financial incentives. Many LMSs provide badges and other virtual rewards for learning success. The rewards don’t need to be expensive, but ideally, you will want to provide a form of rewards to support learning efforts and develop a culture of learning.

6. Have The Right Learning Environment

There are many options available for learning platforms. The learning environment your organization uses should both facilitate and support learning. It should be easy to use and provide the opportunity for knowledge sharing and interaction between learners.

7. Encourage Knowledge Sharing

Knowledge sharing is a big part of creating a learning culture. Informal learning and social learning are a big part of learning. When employees are encouraged and rewarded for sharing knowledge, they will be more engaged in learning. This, in turn, helps build a strong learning culture.

8. Ingrain Learning In Your Hiring Process

One of the best ways to create a learning culture is through your hiring process. Companies who do have been shown to have a stronger learning culture and are top performers. Start having discussions about your learning commitments during interviews with your candidates. This will not only help you attract candidates who have a growth mindset, but it will also make you more attractive as an employer.

9. Create A Meaningful Training Program

Your employees need to feel like they are a part of something bigger than themselves. When they are engaged on a higher level, it supports your efforts to build a learning culture. Check out the guide to Epic Meaning to learn how to make your training programs more meaningful.