Companies frequently preach about agility to employees, to investors — to anyone who will listen. “We need to be agile!” “Agility is the new focus!” Then everyone applauds and goes back to doing whatever it is they were already doing. That’s because everyone thinks agility comes from somewhere else; some “other” part of the business will become agile and fix everything. Unfortunately, that is not how it works.
Agility must become part of the organization’s DNA. It must be in everything and everyone. The pandemic shone a harsh light on just how little agility really existed. L&D was hit especially hard, as most organizations relied heavily on traditional learning and in-person, instructor-led training. It was hard to transition quickly, especially as businesses needed to upskill and reskill the workforce immediately.
The challenge is that even if an organization has an agile workforce as its learning audience, it might not have the right technology to meet their needs. Or perhaps the business can turn on a dime but the learning strategy is not aligned and cannot adjust as quickly. Organizations must address agility in all places — people, strategies, technologies — everything.
For learning, it doesn’t mean completely abandoning ILT or eLearning courses but taking an agile approach in how we develop and deploy them. At the same time, L&D teams should explore ways to create content and programs as quickly as the needs of the business change. Adopting agile development processes such as SCRUM, SAM and others makes it easier to put learning into the flow of work and closer to the point of need. An environment based solely on ADDIE-built classes and courses will not meet these needs.
Brandon Hall Group Smartchoice Preferred Provider Inkling has always been focused on agility. Not only from a technology standpoint but from process and strategy perspectives as well. They work with companies to inject that agility into every aspect of learning so it can help an agile workforce meet ever-changing business needs. For a deeper look at building agility into strategies and systems, download the eBook here.
–David Wentworth, Principal Analyst, Brandon Hall Group