5 reasons why learning fails and how to stop it happening

Paper graded F

A one size fits all approach to learning simply doesn’t work anymore in the modern workplace. Instead, today’s learning needs to follow a ‘many sizes fit many’ framework, offering a range of learning options and a mix of teaching styles to suit a mix of learners.

However, whilst this approach can be hugely beneficial when done right, it can also be ambiguous, with many workplace learning programs failing as a result. But why exactly is this happening? Let’s explore the top 5 reasons.

1. You’re not using learning to effectively upskill or reskill

When a business is looking to fill a new role, it’s not uncommon for them to look for internal promotion opportunities first. This is more cost effective for employers to promote their internal staff, and it can also increase retention rates by fostering a culture that encourages internal growth and movement as a first port of call instead of jumping ship.

In fact, LinkedIn’s Transformation of L&D said that to 51% of learning and development professionals, internal mobility is a higher priority now than before the pandemic, and that a general strategy moving into 2022 should be that skill building and internal promotional programmes can help make talent a renewable resource.

The change:

Conducting a training needs analysis (TNA) can help really determine where your best upskill and reskill opportunities are, allowing L&D to build tailored personal development plans throughout an organisation at individual and group levels.

2. Learners don’t see the value

The “what am I going to get out of this?” question is something that almost anyone can relate to, but when it comes to L&D, it’s not always a straightforward answer.

Some businesses fall short here, failing to clearly communicate what the reward, opportunity or benefit will be of engaging with learning, and many employee training programmes struggle with a lack of interest from employees who don’t how learning can benefit their personal success.

As a result, people are more likely to rush through learning sessions or even skip past them completely, especially if they perceive them to be boring or low value.

The change:

Thankfully, this is something that most learning management systems (LMS) will offer, allowing both L&D and learners themselves to track their progress, targets and set their own goals.

3. The learning just doesn’t resonate

In a traditional working environment, training sessions are planned with the “average” person in mind. And whilst this makes it easier for the physical trainer to deliver their learning content, it limits the learners to only being offered one way to consume that information.

However, in today’s working environment, learners are completely diverse, each preferring different learning methods to the next.

The change:

Getting the training content to really resonate with learners, and identifying with their personal circumstances and aspirations, allows them to engage more and perform better by discovering their strengths. They can also set realistic personal goals and implement best strategies for reaching them, which in turn, allows for constant reflection about their learning and what they need next. The best way to do this? Talk to your team and find out what makes them tick and the types of training they’ll be more likely to engage with.

4. Learning is taking too long

Employees are already very busy people, sometimes overwhelmed with tasks and business commitments. As a result, attending training sessions falls low on their priority list and limited time is set aside to engage.

The change:

Offering micro courses gives employees short, bite-sized learning opportunities, which can replace the traditional form of hour-long courses and is a brilliant way of allowing learners to engage as and when they can, without limitations.

These shorter sessions can be just as impactful as longer ones, based on topics of relevance to a learners’ immediate challenges or opportunities, but instead are much easier to digest and fit into employees’ busy working schedules.

5. There’s no accountability

Whereas managers or senior executives are often held accountable for a lack of internal training engagement, there’s now a strong focus on the employees themselves to drive performance change.

Now, it’s this change in behaviour that should be the employees main responsibility as the learner, and therefore they should understand that their personal success rests with them.

The change:

An LMS will be able to monitor just how much engagement learning courses are getting across an organisation, allowing L&D to identify where learners are either taking too long to start certain courses, or skipping them completely.

Using this data to set completion goals can be an impactful way of encouraging more participation, almost in a gamification sense. Though it can also be powerful when writing personal development plans too. For example, to secure a promotion, all learning modules must be completed by a certain date.

At BuildEmpire, we’re the platform provider to help, as we’re focused on delivering solutions that not only meet your learning and business goals, but exceed them.

Through the bespoke solution we can build for you, we can help you take learning in your organisation from a have-to-do to a want-to-do.

To find out more, contact us today.

Share this post