Training Industry Magazine - March/April 2018 - 55

WHAT'S NEXT IN TECH
ERIC SHARP

7 PRINCIPLES OF
ENTERPRISE LEARNING

In 2001, a group of software developers
got together to discuss the state of
the laborious software development
methodologies of the day. Their
conversation led to the creation of
the Agile Manifesto, a set of principles
outlining a new and lightweight method
to completing software projects.
Since that day, thousands of organizations
have made the adjustment and harvested
the benefits of these lightweight
principles. I believe enterprise learning
needs a similar set of principles. Adjusting
our paradigm is going to be critical in
order to meet the needs of our employees.
These seven principles can be used by a
learning leader to take their organization
into the next era of enterprise learning.

1 | EMPOWER OTHERS.
Empower employees and managers to
curate their own learning experiences with
whatever resources they need. Pressing
curation nearer to the learner increases
quality and validity, and let's be honest,
they are currently curating from Google
anyway. Encourage self-directed learning
and sharing amongst teams.

2 | CONNECT LEARNERS TO
VALUABLE RESOURCES.
Connect learners with each other (and to
insights and feedback) for exploration,
guidance and coaching. While organic
connections will happen, you will need
to initially engineer useful connections
and interactions. In my opinion,
this is the underutilized flywheel of
employee engagement.

3 | DECENTRALIZE LEARNING.
Provide tools to learners where they
work. Learning follows the path of least
resistance. Speed, simplicity and easy
access matter most. So, make self-driven
learning meaningful by curating the right
resources and tools that are accessible by
the employee in their workflow.

4 | CHANNEL CURIOSITY
RATHER THAN COMMAND
AND CONTROL THE
LEARNING PROCESS.
People can already learn anywhere,
anytime, all by themselves. So, spend
less time worrying about how to manage
and track workers' training and more
time figuring out how to channel and
feed their curiosity.

LEADERS MUST
BALANCE
ORGANIZATIONAL
IMPERATIVES WITH
INDIVIDUAL GOALS.
5 | INVEST IN ADAPTIVITY,
NOT EFFICIENCY.
Let go of the fantasy of one integrated
system that does everything, all in a
simple, seamless app. We know it's nice to
imagine. It feels familiar, it sounds safe and
it would be efficient. But locking all your
processes, content and users into one
monolithic system won't help you adapt
when requirements and priorities evolve,

or when new, better options emerge. And
they will.

6 | SHIFT PEOPLE'S
PERSPECTIVES.
Efficiency is not the only reason to
invest in learning technology. The real
goal is making your business and your
people more productive, responsive and
competitive. There is a large dissonance if
your technology doesn't facilitate just-intime learning. Think agile!

7 | DIG THE DATA.
Use analytics, data science and machine
learning to make key decisions and "ofcourse" your employees. "Of-course" refers
to setting the goal of having employees
say "of course" when they carry out an
activity (i.e., it just makes sense). It's much
better than "wow-ing" the learner.
All leaders (not just L&D leaders)
have a role in impacting change and
improving performance and skills across
their company. Leaders must balance
organizational imperatives with individual
goals. Autonomy in learning can be
measured against the principles above. As
a result, employee engagement increases,
workforce skills are enhanced and the
learning culture at a company shifts into
the modern age. Like the Agile Manifesto
was used to change an entire industry,
principles of enterprise learning can be
leveraged to change your organization.
Eric Sharp is the co-founder and chief
technology officer at Degreed. Email Eric.

T R A I N I N G I N DUSTR Y MA GAZ INE - LEAD THE CHANGE 20 18 I WWW. T RAININGINDU S T RY . C OM/ MAGAZ I NE

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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Training Industry Magazine - March/April 2018

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http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2015fall
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http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/trainingindustry/tiq_2015leadership
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