An effective learning programme is vital to business success – here’s why


The world of work is evolving fast. Help your business keep up by implementing impactful and enjoyable learning practices for your people

New technologies, greater flexibility and more agile ways of working are constantly being introduced to business. You need to adapt to the growing needs of your industry by expanding the capabilities of your people.

In this article, we’ll discuss how you can design and deliver an effective learning programme and develop a learning culture within your organisation.

How do we learn? 

There are four key methods of learning. Each of these can be collated into categories known as VARK – which stands for Visual, Aural, Read/write and Kinaesthetic.

Each of us will find at least one of these methods more effective when it comes to taking on and retaining knowledge. And understanding these learning styles can act as a shortcut to better learning. Either for you or for trainers supporting individuals or teams. 

Which learning style is most effective?

While in reality, we use all four learning styles, one of them will prove particularly effective for any given individual. But how do you know which one it is?

The best way to find out is by carrying out a detailed questionnaire. However, there are also a few simple things you can do to give you a clue.

Experiences

Think back to the last time you attended a lecture, workshop or presentation. What do you remember about it?

    1. What you saw – Visual
    2. What you heard – Aural
    3. What you read – Read/write
    4. Or what you did – Kinaesthetic

Language patterns

People tend to use language that fits their preferred learning style. 

A visual learner might say something like “Ah, I see now” or “I get the picture”. While a kinaesthetic learner will want to get hands-on, using language such as “get to grips with” or “let’s have a go”.

learning programme

What makes for an effective learning programme?

Plan your material

Once you understand how people learn, you can tailor your learning programme to best suit the needs of an individual or group.

All good training programmes will feature examples of visual, aural, read/write and kinaesthetic learning resources. These might be collaborative group activities, discussion topics, visual presentations, written assignments or one to one reviews.

But it’s up to you to determine what is the best blend for your staff.

Facilitate your people

In addition to the learning preferences outlined by VARK, it’s important to note they say little about social preferences, personality traits, motivation or whether someone is introverted or extroverted.

Keep this in mind during your planning. You will need to monitor the pace and tone of any activities to ensure diverse teams can maximise their learning together. 

Nurture future leaders 

Some of the most vital skills you need to impart through your learning programme are leadership skills. 

Utilising learning practices such as apprenticeships is a fantastic way to do this, as the safe and professional environment they provide help develop competence and ingrain successful behaviours.

Inspire curiosity 

The most important objective of any learning programme is to inspire curiosity in those who attend. 

Giving someone the appetite for learning is a great behaviour for anyone to possess – especially in a leader.  These behaviours are excellent for leaders to role-model and create a culture of continuous development, improving the effectiveness of the overall team and increasing their business impact.  

Consulting a Learning Architect 

A Learning Architect provides unique insight to any modern business. They will work in conjunction with your teams to design Learning and Development programmes, from frameworks and curriculums right through to content and materials. 

They’ll also make sure that any programme reaches all the relevant apprenticeship and government requirements – as well as meeting your business’ needs that impacts performance.

Meet modern business demands

Bringing in a specialist Learning Architect won’t just make sure you’ve got the right teaching materials. They’ll implement an end-to-end experience that focuses on obtaining knowledge, building skills and adapting behaviours.

This allows for the development of agile behaviours needed to tackle challenges and maximise opportunities in everyday working life.

If you have any questions about learning styles or programmes, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. Or read our article on how to use the Apprenticeship Levy.

 


Katy Sakoor
Katy Sakoor
katy.sakoor@ricoh.co.uk

Learning Programme Design & Architect Manager at Ricoh UK

Read all articles by Katy Sakoor