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Goodbye, 2021! We usher in each new year with the traditional “ball drop”… and also a pledge not to drop the ball on New Year’s resolutions.
But often that’s easier said than done. Some studies show that only 4% of people stick to all their New Year’s resolutions. Many abandon ship within months or even weeks.
But I’m not talking here about resolutions related to exercise or other forms of self-improvement. For businesses, the new year brings an opportunity to define new business-related goals and resolutions — and put processes in place to follow through on them.
Given my background in education, I’m particularly passionate about driving learning and development (L&D) improvements within businesses. Amidst the upheaval we’ve seen the past two years, and the turnover companies are experiencing during the “Great Resignation,” L&D is especially important to business continuity and resilience, employee retention and great customer experiences.
Related: 4 Steps to Build Strategically Critical Leadership-Development Programs
So let’s look at key training resolutions companies can make for 2022 — and ways to keep them! — that will be a win-win (win) for businesses, their employees and customers alike.
1. Focus on upskilling and reskilling
As market conditions, industry regulations, job requirements, customer needs (and so on!) evolve, employees often need to “unlearn” and relearn key information and competencies, and diversify their skill sets. Closing knowledge gaps and providing more on-the-job training can help employees grow their confidence, perform better and feel more secure about their future.
Plus, upskilling and reskilling are good for the business too! Consider this information from Deloitte’s 2021 organizational resilience report, which notes that “an adaptable workforce begets a resilient culture.” The study found that business leaders ranked “flexibility and adaptability” as the workforce trait most important to their organization’s future. In addition, 69% of C-level executives whose companies had implemented training or rotational programs to help reskill workers prior to the pandemic said that their organizations weathered the events of 2020 “well/very well,” compared to their peers.
So how do you know when employees can use a knowledge or skills refresh or diversification, and on what? Combine a “gut-check” from managers with training-performance data and training-needs assessments. Taking inventory of employee knowledge and performance at planned intervals can give organizations the momentum to follow through on their upskilling and reskilling goals.
It’s also important to note that these learning processes don’t just have to be part of structured, formal programs. You can enable employees to tap into various learning ecosystems (including reputable online communities, wikis, forums and knowledge bases) and provide them with various “knowledge cards” (with informal, useful, quick on-the-job tips), just-in-time videos and other digestible, mobile-ready content. Incorporating gamification can …….