Why Turning Your Office Into a Classroom is Insanely Brilliant
Ask any expert, read any leadership blog, or pour over any of the 2 billion tweets you see every five minutes about success and they’ll all come back to one main theme: Never stop learning. Which is why you should try to turn your workplace into a living and breathing classroom for everyone you employ. Sure, the first image that pops into your head of a classroom is the rigid desks and whiteboards of your younger years. Or, the dusty chalkboards of your younger years if you’re a Gen-Xer or older. But, as we move beyond the classroom and into the professional world, learning new skills remains just as important as it did then.
The difference is that now traditional classroom learning just won’t cut it. As we attempt to apply the theories and practices we learned in school to real-world experiences, we inevitably run into situations we’re not prepared for. That’s why the workplace serves as the perfect learning environment.
When your employees continually learn through experiences at work, the result is a highly trained, more efficient workforce. And while your employees continue to learn, you’ll be there to serve as a mentor, coach, and teacher, guiding them over the hurdles of continual training.
Here are three things you can do to turn your office into a productive classroom:
Develop personalized curriculum for your employees
After reviewing each employee’s skills and abilities, you’ll be able to develop a personalized curriculum that fills in any holes in his or her skill set. Using online courses and webinars, you can facilitate training right in your office. And, after your employees participate in training, you can further mentor and guide them through applying the techniques they’ve learned. In addition, there are certain skills you want every one of your employees to be proficient in, such as written communication, and this way you can be sure that everyone gets this specific training.
Training isn’t worth anything unless you know it is working. Take time each month to conduct performance reviews with your employees. It doesn’t have to be long meetings … just 10 minutes will do fine. This is the time to review the training … get their feedback on it … and how they are applying it to their jobs. It’s a good time to discuss future training objectives, as well, and make sure they are on track. Review the tasks it will take to complete those goals. After each performance review, you’ll be able to better determine the training they need next.
Build leaders from within
By turning your workplace into a learning environment, you show your employees that you care about their future. And when they feel appreciated, they’re more likely to stick around. Through continued training and mentoring, you’ll be building leaders from within and retaining your top talent. Eventually, your employees will be able to act as mentors themselves, helping other employees through their continual training.
So forget thick textbooks and stuffy training rooms. The best learning environment is the workplace—but only if you facilitate a learning-friendly environment. By encouraging your employees to continually learn in the workplace, they’ll be constantly applying what they’ve learned to real-world workplace experiences. #NeverStopLearning