Every Learning Professional Must be a Strategist

Brandon Hall Group’s Certified Learning Strategist Program Builds Broad Capabilities to Improve Learning’s Business Impact and Position Learning Professionals for Career Advancement

Corporate learning is more critical than ever. Employers are counting on the learning function to upskill and reskill employees as they grapple with unprecedented change from digitalization, the coronavirus pandemic, a changing business and social climate, and more.

Optimizing learning across the organization requires strategic leaders who understand that the learning experience and its outcomes can vary widely among different audiences. Front-line employees need a different emphasis than leaders. Compliance requirements can drive a different experience than personal development. Additionally, learners are typically multigenerational and highly mobile. While looking to get learning into the flow of work, it is critical to understand that the flow is different for different employee groups.

Brandon Hall Group’s 2020 learning strategy research shows that learning organizations know they don’t have the business impact they need to have:

  • 69% say they can’t adequately measure learning’s impact
  • 54% cite a lack of alignment between learning and business outcomes.
  • 43% say learners are not sufficiently engaged.

The solution is for all members of the learning team to have a broader, strategic focus to make learning a partner with the business. Brandon Hall Group, leveraging its more than 25 years as the preeminent research and advisory firm in Learning and Development, is launching a certification program that positions any member of the learning team to be a strategic business partner. 

No one on the learning team can afford to be siloed by position or experience. The learning function is changing. It must be aligned with business goals and collaborate across the enterprise to understand how learning can develop agile employees who can thrive in an uncertain future. 

Therefore, BHG’s Certified Learning Strategist program has 24 competencies that enable learning professionals at all levels to broaden their expertise beyond learning and development to include business acumen, leadership, inclusion, consulting, cross-functional collaboration, analytics, organizational design and more. 

Our research shows only 13% of organizations are prepared to better align learning with the business over the next two years. That’s not going to cut it. The way we work is changing before our very eyes. Learning teams must play a lead role in preparing their organizations for the future, but they need help to adapt and mature – and quickly. The Certified Learning Strategist program provides the help employers need to build a learning team that can make a business difference now and in the future. 

Learning professionals who earn the Certified Learning Strategist (CLS) designation:

  • Are positioned as business leaders with expertise in strategic learning and development.
  • Develop broad capabilities to assume a variety of roles to leverage learning to improve business outcomes.
  • Expand their ability to collaborate with a broad group of stakeholders across the enterprise.

The CLS program is a learning journey free of ratings or grades. It is focused solely on enabling learning professionals to learn and apply new competencies to drive business results in their organizations. Brandon Hall Group’s learning and development experts, with more than 120 years of collective experience, are available throughout the certification process to answer questions and provide support.

For more information, email us at [email protected]

-Claude Werder, Senior Vice President and Principal HCM Analyst, Brandon Hall Group

For information on Brandon Hall Group’s research and how we can assist your organization, please visit www.brandonhall.com

Become a Brandon Hall Group member!

We are a human capital management research and advisory firm with more than 10,000 clients globally. For over 25 years, we have been delivering research-based solutions that empower excellence in organizations around the world. Our vision is to inspire a better workplace experience. Becoming a Brandon Hall Group member means our team joins your team. Membership provides a host of resources and services and – most importantly — a seasoned team of thought leaders and client support professionals dedicated to your success.

Click here for more information and to sign up for a free trial membership.

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Mike Cooke

Chief Executive Officer of Brandon Hall Group Mike Cooke Prior to joining Brandon Hall Group, Mike Cooke was the Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of AC Growth. Mike held leadership and executive positions for the majority of his career, at which he was responsible for steering sales and marketing teams to drive results and profitability. His background includes more than 15 years of experience in sales, marketing, management, and operations in the research, consulting, software and technology industries. Mike has extensive experience in sales, marketing and management having worked for several early high-growth emerging businesses and has implemented technology systems to support various critical sales, finance, marketing and client service functions. He is especially skilled in organizing the sales and service strategy to fully support a company’s growth strategy. The concept of growth was an absolute to Mike and a motivator in starting AC Growth, in order to help organizations achieve research driven results. Most recently, Mike was the VP and General Manager of Field Operations at Bersin & Associates, a global analyst and consulting services firm focused on all areas of enterprise learning, talent management and talent acquisition. Tasked with leading the company’s global expansion, Mike led all sales operations worldwide. During Mike’s tenure, the company has grown into a multi-national firm, conducting business in over 45 countries with over 4,500 multi-national organizations. Mike started his career at MicroVideo Learning Systems in 1992, eventually holding a senior management position and leading all corporate sales before founding Dynamic Minds. Mike was CEO and Co-Founder of Dynamic Minds, a custom developer of software programs, working with clients like Goldman Sachs, Prentice Hall, McGraw Hill and Merrill Lynch. Also, Mike worked for Oddcast, a leading provider of customer experience and marketing solutions, where he held a senior management position leading the company into new markets across various industries. Mike also serves on the Advisory Board for Carbon Solutions America, an independent sustainability consulting and carbon management firm that specializes in the design and implementation of greenhouse reduction and sustainability plans as well as managing the generation of carbon and renewal energy and energy efficiency credits. Mike attended University of Phoenix, studying Business Administration and Finance. He has also completed executive training at the Chicago Graduate School of Business in Chicago, IL.

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