When I get the opportunity to attend a conference or workshop, it's important to me that I share what I learn when I come back to the office. Why? Learning is about growth - developing new skills that will help your business thrive, and building momentum going by sharing it with your people and teams. This is how you create a culture of continuous learning.
I attended SHRM 2018 in Chicago earlier this summer, where I got to hear words of wisdom from the likes of Cy Wakeman, Adam Grant and Sheryl Sandberg. Their talks were amazing! They shared their insights on everything from accountability and cutting out workplace drama to adapting to change and curating your work culture. I left SHRM 2018 with tons of useful research, insights, tips and tricks.
There was just no way that I was going to keep all this useful information to myself! I'm a big believer in "you give to get" so I published three blog posts summarizing each talk on our company's internal social community, which we run through Saba Cloud. (We drink our own champagne here at Saba!)
The result? My posts actually generated some great dialogue, where several employees discussed their favorite takeaways, reflections and even shared other relevant resources to keep the discussion alive.
How to Share Your Learning
Here's the best part about sharing your learning: This is not a "go big or go home" scenario. You don't need to bust out a 20-slide PowerPoint or organize a 45-minute conference call every time you, your managers or your employees learn something that could benefit your teams or organization. In fact, here are three quick and easy ways to share your offsite or independent, informal learning so that you can get started today:
1. Embrace Microlearning
Have you ever attended a conference and taken notes during the keynote... but then your notes sat buried in a random desk drawer, collecting dust? Put your chicken scratch to good use and write up a short blog post summarizing the key takeaways. (Heck, you can even write it on the plane back home, if you traveled far to learn from the best.)
Share your blog post on your own learning management system (LMS) or company intranet so that your colleagues can read it and learn anytime, anywhere. You can also contribute to your internal newsletter or publish an article to an industry magazine.
The best part about all these ways to share your learning? They take very little time on your part and your colleagues can read and learn on their own time. Sharing your learning in microbursts increases the likelihood that your people will take the three minutes to read your post and leave a comment with their own thoughts.
2. Go for a One-To-One or One-To-Many Approach
Remember to teach to your strengths. If the thought of writing out your thoughts either terrifies or bores you, don't worry - you're not stuck. Use the water cooler as your inspiration! If you're more interested in verbally coaching a group of your people, host a lunch-and-learn and invite the folks you think would most benefit.
Does the thought of holding court with a group of your fellow high-potential employees make you break out in hives? Then sign up for your company's mentorship program and share your insights one-on-one with a colleague who could directly apply these lessons.
The most important thing is that you spread the information in a way that is clear, helpful and makes sense to the people who will be learning from you, but also in a way that you're comfortable with. Being comfortable will just make you a better teacher!
3. Get Organized: Share Strategically
Disorganized learning is ineffective learning. Create and curate a learning playlist in your LMS to keep your learning focused and easy to find when someone goes looking for a specific industry insight or topic.
Encourage informal learning and sharing amongst your people within your LMS. Some people learn best by watching videos while others thrive in a one-on-one learning environment.
It doesn't matter how you share the information, the important thing is that it gets to the people who need it most or who can use it best to improve their performance and drive business success.
What's in It for You?
When we teach others what we already know, we reinforce the lessons we've already learned and share "ideas worth spreading," which, incidentally, is also the slogan of TED. By enabling your people and teams to build new skills and perform at higher levels, you are also positioning yourself as a learning leader. Repeating this process regularly promotes a culture of learning and sharing.
Breathe new life into your informal learning and microlearning initiatives! Walk the talk as you integrate co-learning into your learning strategy and move the needle companywide on both learning and performance.
If you're on the lookout for conferences or workshops to maximize your return on investment in learning and development for your people, join me and other Saba executives this September at Saba Insight 2018! You'll leave with information, insights and resources that you can share with your organization. If you haven't registered yet, there's still time!