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Corporate Digital Learning

Chapters 3 › Unit 3: Creating a Culture of Learning for Martina View instructions Hide instructions

Creating a Culture of Learning for Martina

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Imagine Martina from Unit 3 again. She is working 40 hours a week and on top of that, needs to learn about managing and leading a team in an online training class.
So now Martina is trying to integrate her learning and training into her work. However, she feels uncomfortable reading a text or watching a video as part of her online training in front of her team at work. In the end, she decides to learn at home in her free time, making her more stressed than before.

Help Martina create a learning culture in her team or office!

For example: She could create a corner in the office with a flag on it, when it is learning time, every Friday afternoon for 2 hours. She could block her calendar, creating deadlines for herself to finish the tasks, have open conversations with her staff members about her learning experiences etc.

How can you support her?

There are quite a few ideas you can develop after having read all the implications that a corporate digital strategy involves in the main and the additional material.

Do you need more inspiration for the task? Then have a look at the following links and articles:

Put yourself in the shoes of the learner: This nicely written article in the Washington Post illustrates the power of spending two days as a learner and experiencing their everyday lives.

How much time do you spend on learning a week? This short article by Jane Hart includes a poll about how many hours people spend on learning. She also wrote about 5 steps towards Modern Workplace Learning. It is important is to see the change, be the change and support the change.

Or maybe you get some inspiration by a rather controversial article and push for employees to learn in their free time? Quentin Hardy wrote in the NY Times about how AT&T "Tells Its Workers: Adapt, or Else".

Find some images that visualize how you can help Martina and how Martina can create a culture of learning. Upload these images as part of your journal entry and your ideas so that we can collect them at the end and create a collage.

Helping Martina with her online studies

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AT&T chairman Randall Stephenson asks his staff to retools themselves with 5-10 hours per week of online learning to avoid obsoleting themselves with respect to technology (Hardy. 2016) while Hart (2016) agrees, providing learning is counted from all sources and not just from online sources. Hence Martina should realise that the learning she does is not just for the company’s benefit but also for her term survival in addition to helping her to do her current job better.

learning culture
Fig.1 Signpost for embedding a culture of learning within organisations
(Source of image: http://www.elevateconsulting.ca/creating-a-culture-of-learning/)

As a manager / team leader she must also ensure that she does not gain any additional benefits such as a special time-off for study or make any of her team work harder than she does in order to maintain team cohesiveness which is important for optimal team performance. Therefore creating a learning culture for her unit must be inclusive and benefit everyone. A good signpost (Fig. 1) that points in the right direction towards learning would include an environment that encourages and rewards openness, honesty and curiosity. The Goal should be continuous learning and seeking of knowledge (Fig. 2). In addition one team / group lunch or dinner (or at the pub) per week to share any weekly insights with the others can help augment the spirit of learning.

knowledge

Fig. 1 Search for knowledge
(Source of image: http://completewellbeing.com/article/reject-knowledge-embrace-learning/)

In regards to scheduling: for a start she can allocate 1 hour per day during working hours, for research and study, for all staff in a staggered way so that any point in time not more ½ the staff (preferably only 1) are on such an activity. This gives Martina 5 hours per week.
She can also come an hour early every day (5 hours per week) and spend another hour (5 hours per week) during her free-time after work on her studies – this gives her another 10 hours per week. The total now is 15 hours per week of online learning for her job with weekends being used to make up to whatever total number of hours she needs to complete her weekly studies.
If she still feels any stress then she should must learn that some amount of stress is good for her and can be motivating. However if she feels that she is at a level that she cannot cope with it then she must get some help on how to manage that part of the stress that is “too much”.

References
Hart, J. (2016). “How many hours do you spend learning a week?”, URL: http://www.c4lpt.co.uk/blog/2016/02/19/how-many-hours-do-you-spend-learning-a-week/, .

Hardy, Q. (2016).”Gearing Up for the Cloud, AT&T Tells Its Workers: Adapt, or Else”. The New York Times, Feb 13, 2016. URL: http://www.c4lpt.co.uk/blog/2016/02/19/how-many-hours-do-you-spend-learning-a-week/..

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