Previously published as: Training Strategies for Tomorrow
Online from: 2003
Subject Area: Learning and Development
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Article citation: Anne Gimson, (2010) "Editorial", Development and Learning in Organizations, Vol. 24 Iss: 3, pp. -
We know that at least 80 percent of the learning that enables us to be effective in our work comes from experiences outside of any formal, content-based training context (Cunningham et al., 2004; Eichinger and Lombardo, 2007). And yet, the majority of time, energy and resources in many L&D departments is focused on the remaining 20 percent. We need to redress the balance.
In this issue of the journal, we are treated to some notable examples of how learners can be supported to maximize the learning they can take from their experiences.
The viewpoint, from Bonnie Cord and Michael Clements, kicks us off with a call for greater collaboration between higher education and organizations to support students to make an effective transition from classroom to work. The student quotes they share about their Internship Program illustrate the benefits to be gained by this focus on learning through and from work.
Daniel Mathis challenges all leaders in organizations to invest energy in creating opportunities for transformational learning – i.e. effecting change in the assumptions through which we understand our experiences. His highly practical suggestions around action research projects are potentially very rich.
In his case study from the UK public sector, Gary Bonsall clearly demonstrates that there is much work to do to assist learners to take more responsibility for their learning. He clearly points out how this continues to be hampered where offerings and programs in organizations mainly focus on formal, classroom-based training courses. I encourage you to take a look at his recommendations for L&D departments.
How much knowledge do we need to store in our minds to be effective at work? Charles Jennings and Jerome Wargnier share some illuminating statistics on the answer to this and other questions. Their use of on-line portals to create interactive learning communities is an example of how organizations can set up structures to help people learn from one another.
Taking a broader look at the actual and potential uses of technology – or as it is now called, Web 2.0 – Richard Boateng offers a map to guide us through the maze of different tools and their function(s). He then goes further, shedding light on how organizations can evaluate which tools will support their particular learning processes.
Sticking with technology, our first review piece “Learning the WoW factor: how virtual learning environments can get real” takes us into the World of Warcraft – an online game with 10 million players. Not something that is of interest to organizations? Not necessarily so, with people having to learn how to co-operate, innovate, market their ideas and deal with constant change in order to survive and get to the next level (some 70 in all).
“Increasing worker learning and empowerment by providing quiet time” shares a case study from a small Australian library where employees were given time and space to devise and work on a task of their choosing. As most of us deal with constant interruptions and incessant meetings, the benefits and difficulties people experienced during the project make interesting reading.
It is widely recognized that mentoring can be a highly effective form of development – both for mentors and mentees. “What is mentoring?” offers some different perspectives on how it can be best implemented to ensure that the most is gained, both for the individuals and their organizations.
Our last review piece, “Changing faces of the public sector”, offers nine principles for implementing change in these particular organizations. These principles evolved from focus group research undertaken with three organizations in Canada but I suspect will resonate with those in the public sector in many other countries.
Finally, have a look at the new Book Review column by Michael Bokeno. Any of us working in the current field of organizational development would find the review – and indeed the book itself – invaluable.
Strategic Developments International, UK. firstname.lastname@example.org
Cunningham, I., Dawes, G. and Bennett, B. (2004), The Handbook of Work Based Learning, Gower, Aldershot
Eichinger, R. and Lombardo, M. (2007), Career Architect Development Planner, 4th ed., Lominger, Minneapolis, MN