Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 51

MICHELLE EGGLESTON SCHWARTZ

LEARNER
MINDSET

WINNING THE BATTLE FOR
LEARNER ENGAGEMENT

The COVID-19 pandemic has created
many challenges for learning leaders,
and engagement is at the top of the list,
according to Training Industry's pulse
survey research. Employees are having
to combat a multitude of distractions,
from working remotely to technology
issues to increased levels of stress and
anxiety. The dynamics of work have
changed and so has learning.
In the midst of all this chaos, who wants to
attend a training program that has no clear,
direct benefits? Let's be honest: Absolutely
no one. If not managed effectively, training
can be viewed as a waste of time and
resources by learners and stakeholders.
Great training organizations do not leave
training outcomes to chance; they conduct
a thorough needs analysis to close skills
gaps and strategically align training to
company goals and objectives.
When presented with training opportunities, employees immediately wonder,
"What's in it for me?" This phrase is
well known in the training industry and
serves as a barrier to learning transfer.
To overcome this barrier, learning and
development (L&D) professionals must
answer the question and communicate
the benefits of training to learners - much
like a marketing professional.
It's easy to overlook the fact that
training is a product, and products
need to be marketed to consumers to
increase gains. For training, this means
ensuring learners understand how the
training relates to their job role and
how it will improve their performance.
To be truly effective, L&D professionals

must engage learners before the
training takes place.
Oftentimes, there is so much focus on
making the training itself engaging - from
selecting the most appropriate content and
delivery method to embedding interactive
tools like quizzes, videos or games. Don't
get me wrong, training should certainly be
engaging. But engagement becomes an
uphill battle if the learner begins training
without a sense of purpose. At that point,
learners need all the "bells and whistles"
to capture and maintain their attention.
In today's work environment, employees
are distracted and struggling to focus. The
dynamics of work are certainly different
- but L&D can help. Let's examine a few
ways L&D can help cut through the noise
and improve employee engagement.

ENGAGEMENT BECOMES
AN UPHILL BATTLE IF
THE LEARNER BEGINS
TRAINING WITHOUT A
SENSE OF PURPOSE.
UPSKILL LEADERS
Now more than ever, managers should
be respectful of their employees' time
and the responsibilities they are juggling
in their personal lives. Now is not the
time to create busy work for employees;
now is the time to lean in and listen to
your employees. Empathy, listening and
emotional intelligence are critical skills
for leaders in today's work environment.
By strengthening these skills, leaders can

better support employees on their journey
to the new normal.
ADOPT A HOLISTIC APPROACH
TO PEOPLE DEVELOPMENT
Anxiety and stress are often viewed
as personal issues, but they impact
our professional lives tremendously. A
holistic approach to training goes beyond
developing the technical skills that
employees need to complete their job - it
also accounts for the emotional and social
development of employees. Organizations
that prioritize employee well-being create
a culture where employees feel valued
and empowered to succeed.
ALIGN TRAINING TO
SHIFTING PRIORITIES
Odds are your business goals have shifted
due to the impacts of the pandemic.
Keeping employees aware of these
changes is critical. The entire organization,
including training and development,
needs to be aligned around these new
goals to ensure success. Transparency
can instill confidence in employees as
they navigate change and relieve anxiety
regarding the state of the business.
Learner engagement is a challenge in
today's work environment, but it doesn't
need to be an uphill battle. A thoughtful
and holistic approach to training can
elevate employee performance when
stress is at an all time high.
Michelle Eggleston Schwartz is the
editorial director of Training Industry, Inc.
Email Michelle.

T R A I N I N G I N DUSTR Y MAGAZ INE - BUILDING A GREAT TRAI NI NG ORGANI ZAT I ON I WWW. T RAININGINDU S T RY . C OM/ MAGAZ I NE

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Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020

Building a Great Training Organization
Table of Contents
The Strategic L&D Plan
Developing a Great Training Organization Like a Healthy Brain
Change-ready L&D: Ingredients for Success
What Great Training Organizations Do
Building a Learning Strategy thath Drives Business Results
L&D Bottleneck: Why Your Training Material Isn't Being Utilized
10 Best Practices for Leading a Great Training Organization
The Untapped Goldmine of the Service Professional as the Trusted Advisor
Do We Really Need Learning Platforms? Understand the Learning Landscape and Spend Your Budget Wisely
Improving Instructor Development and Performance with Observations
How to Leverage Business Acumen to Create a Future-ready Organization
Accounting for Learning Investments and Organizational Impact
Lessons Learned: A Shared Services Implementation
The Brave New World of L&D: Stepping Up in the Age of Disruption
Winning the Battle for Learner Engagement
Sales Enablement Comes of Age
Company News
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - Intro
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 1
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 2
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 3
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 4
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - Building a Great Training Organization
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - Table of Contents
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 7
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 8
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 9
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 10
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - The Strategic L&D Plan
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 12
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - Developing a Great Training Organization Like a Healthy Brain
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 14
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - Change-ready L&D: Ingredients for Success
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 16
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - What Great Training Organizations Do
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - Building a Learning Strategy thath Drives Business Results
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 19
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 20
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 21
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - L&D Bottleneck: Why Your Training Material Isn't Being Utilized
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 23
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 10 Best Practices for Leading a Great Training Organization
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 25
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 26
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 27
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - The Untapped Goldmine of the Service Professional as the Trusted Advisor
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 29
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - Do We Really Need Learning Platforms? Understand the Learning Landscape and Spend Your Budget Wisely
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 31
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 32
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 33
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 34
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - Improving Instructor Development and Performance with Observations
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 36
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 37
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - How to Leverage Business Acumen to Create a Future-ready Organization
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 39
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 40
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 41
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - Accounting for Learning Investments and Organizational Impact
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 43
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 44
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 45
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - Lessons Learned: A Shared Services Implementation
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 47
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 48
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - The Brave New World of L&D: Stepping Up in the Age of Disruption
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 50
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - Winning the Battle for Learner Engagement
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - Sales Enablement Comes of Age
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - Company News
Training Industry Magazine - September/October 2020 - 54
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