Training Industry Magazine - Winter 2014 - (Page 35)

THE BUSINESSLEADER'S BOTTO M LINE: ALIGNING LEARNING WITH O R G A N I Z AT I O N A L N E E D S BY AJAY M. PANGARKAR & TERESA KIRKWOOD In uncertain economic times, such as the current one, and with increasing competition, leadership expects to maximize every dollar available to achieve, or at least sustain, some type of market advantage. Every business activity an organization undertakes must deliver results. If not, then it is unnecessary and eliminated. training efforts and organizational needs. In either case, learning professionals are missing a unique opportunity to become relevant to their organization and avoid being seen as an unnecessary expense. Business leaders are under tremendous pressure to account for the performance of every business activity more than ever before. This is often a foreign concept for supporting business functions like workplace learning and human resources. Traditionally, softer business activities are not held to the same scrutiny as with primary, operational business functions. Leaders typically view supporting activities as budgetary black holes unable to prove direct contribution to business results. But, this is no longer the case. Leaders expect supporting functions to demonstrate evidence of their contribution to organizational objectives. Workplace learning can embed itself into business expectations by aligning every training dollar with specific business objectives. This is easier said than done and it's not about measuring return on investment (ROI) of training. The challenge for learning professionals is to sell the benefits of an intangible need (training outcomes) to those expecting tangible results (business and financial results). More often than not, those directly involved with supporting functions (workplace learning) fail to grasp management's message and expectations either because they do not view themselves as a true business activity or are unable to make connections between RELEVANCE OF WORKPLACE LEARNING Business leaders recognize the relevance for workplace learning, however, with limited resources the focus is always on accountability and results. To gain accountability, one needs to pay attention to the needs of the other stakeholders, such as the various levels of businessunit managers and employees, not just your business leaders. The first instinct is to obtain approval and endorsement from senior decision makers. The support of the people directly impacted are often ignored; those who will use and apply the training and ultimately determine TRAINING INDUSTRY MAGAZINE - WINTER2014 I WWW.TRAININGINDUSTRY.COM/TIQ 35 http://WWW.TRAININGINDUSTRY.COM/TIQ

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Training Industry Magazine - Winter 2014

Tracking Trends
Table of Contents
Guest Editor: Meeting Today's Learning Consumers Where They Are
Facilitating Change
How Smart Leaders Squash Employee Entitlement
The Reskilling of Design
Responsive Design and Learning Solutions
Women, Leadership and Emotional Intelligence
Key Trends for 2014: Shifting to Business-Centric Learning
The Promise of Badges for Learning and Development
The Business Leader's Bottom Line: Aligning Learning with Organizational Needs
Raising the Bar: The Impact of Sales Training on Effective Customer Engagement
The Language of Measurement: When to Assess, Evalutate and Test
Casebook: Combined Insurance: Ensuring Efficient Sales Training via Mobile Learning
The Challenge of Workplace Re-entry After Training
The Learning Shift: From Event to Process
What's Online
Company News

Training Industry Magazine - Winter 2014