Training Industry Quarterly - Winter 2011 - (Page 15)

LEARNING 2020 | LISA BODELL WILL THIS SORT OF HYPER-FOCUS ON TRAINING BECOME THE NORM? THINKING ABOUT THE FUTURE OF LEARNING W hat will corporate learning and development look like 10 years from now? It’s easy to say, “It will be different,” but it takes skilled foresight, critical thinking and a dash of imagination to extract valuable insights from today’s trends and use them to envision tomorrow’s reality. In this new column, I plan to use such tools to explore the changes that lie ahead. As an experienced futurist, teacher and entrepreneur, I am adept at identifying trends that will impact industries and organizations in the short and long term. I’m also passionate about learning, and through my work teaching employees at all levels to be more innovative, I became especially interested in corporate learning and development. As you know, the field is experiencing powerful shifts that are rapidly disrupting old models. With a global, multi-generational workforce and new tools and technologies arising all the time, it’s never been more important to leverage opportunities to create more effective programs and to understand the forces driving these changes. One particular change on the horizon is that learning and development increasingly has the potential to become a competitive advantage for organizations—in fact, some believe it will become the number-one differentiator between tomorrow’s leaders and laggards. It’s true that some companies already operate this way. Jack Welch, former CEO of GE, once said “an organization’s ability to learn, to transfer that learning across its components, and to act on it quickly is its ultimate, sustainable competitive advantage.” Well known for its culture of learning, GE invests over $1 billion each year in employee training and education. Will this sort of hyper-focus on training become the norm? Imagine if every job seeker evaluating a potential employer weighted training and development just as heavily as salary and benefits. A shift of that nature would, in turn, bring metrics to the forefront. Despite the difficulty organizations already face measuring their own training effectiveness, there will be an increased demand for the ability to compare learning programs across companies. Another prominent force affecting learning and development is social learning. While many companies today are sure to make use of “trendy technologies,” such as Facebook, the true value of social learning lies in the potential for collaboration—not simply in knowledge sharing. Organizations that get this right will certainly have an advantage in the marketplace. It’s thoughts like these that get me excited about imagining the future of corporate learning and development, and I hope to impart not only enthusiasm but valuable insight as we evaluate these trends and topics. I look forward to gaining wisdom and exploring new ideas together as we anticipate and plan for what corporate Learning and Development will look like in 2020. Lisa Bodell is the founder and CEO of futurethink, a globally recognized innovation research and training firm that helps businesses build capabilities to become world-class innovators. A pioneer in the field of innovation and learning, Bodell is a seasoned entrepreneur who has built three successful businesses and is frequently sought for her expertise by publications such as The New York Times, Wired, and Bloomberg Businessweek. E-mail Lisa. 15 TrainingIndustry Quarterly, Winter 2011 / A Training Industry, Inc. ezine /

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Training Industry Quarterly - Winter 2011

Training Industry Quarterly - Winter 2011
Element K
From Where I Sit: Your 2011 Action Plan
Table of Contents
Ad Index
Training Industry Top 20
At the Editor's Desk: Becoming Enablers
Raytheon Professional Services
Performance & Productivity: The Power of Conversations
Learning Technologies: Paving Cow Paths for Dinosaurs?
Technical Training: Talent Management & Technical Training
Partnering for Performance Conference
Learning 2020: Thinking about the Future of Learning
Cornerstone On Demand
Cover Report: Proving Training's Value: Linking Training to Business Outcomes
The Training Associates
Tactics Feature: 7 Solutions for Workforce Training
Harvard Business Publishing
Strategies Feature: Onboarding: A Driving Force for Employee Engagement
Hemsley Fraser
Solutions Feature: Making Informal Learning Real
Training Industry Quarterly
CaseBook: Habitat for Humanity: Training Under Construction
Tracking Trends: The Big Shift
Closing Arguments: Focusing on the Future
Delta College Corporate Services

Training Industry Quarterly - Winter 2011