Promoting Learning in the Workplace

10 Best Practices for Promoting Learning in the Workplace

Akshay Birje
• February 15, 2024

(12 min read)

Learning provides employees and organizations with essential skill sets and knowledge that are needed for overall development and productivity. It is crucial for businesses of all sizes. Organizations will have to incorporate learning in their culture not only to empower their employees but also to retain them in the long run and to achieve sustained success.

Table of Content

In this blog, we take a deeper look at some practical solutions that will help you promote learning in your workplace. But before that, it is vital to understand the basics like why learning is important and what benefits you can expect from investing in it. 

What is the Purpose of Building a Learning Culture in the Workplace?

Purpose of Building a Learning Culture

Integrating learning into the workplace is one of the most strategic investments a company could make.

Learning encourages employees to continue acquiring new skills and abilities. It also helps businesses remain competitive and adaptive in today’s fast-changing business world. Plus, it drives innovation and continuous progress among employees and the organization as a whole.

Learning culture influences every aspect of your company. According to an IBM study, it has been found that organizations that perform well are likely to have a large number of employees who receive the necessary training.

Employees become more engaged and satisfied when they know that continual learning is a vital component of the organization. In fact, according to the report,   80% of employees said learning and development opportunities would help them feel more engaged on the job. 

Consider this state – Companies with highly engaged workforces are now 24% more profitable. 

Furthermore, a learning culture enables individuals to do their best, which makes workplaces more productive and stable. Plus, it enables employees to grow in their careers and effectively handle a variety of challenges.

Benefits of Learning-Oriented Leadership

Benefits of Learning-Oriented Leadership

Learning-oriented leadership is a way of leading a team or company that focuses on continuous learning. It is an amazing technique that provides numerous benefits to businesses which involves improved team performance, team involvement, and overall business success. 

By promoting a culture of continuous learning and development, leaders empower their teams to adapt to change, stay innovative, and solve problems creatively. This approach helps increase employee engagement, motivation, and collaboration, making the team stronger.

Learning-oriented leaders mainly focus on talent development where they foster a skilled and motivated team, leading to a high-performing workplace. Generally, 

learning occurs through a variety of training formats such as workshops, webinars, online courses, hands-on practical sessions, and mentorship programs.

Through training and development, team members acquire new skills and knowledge appropriately that improve individual and group performance.

Karen Hebert-Maccaro, Chief Executive Officer of Babson Executive Education, believes that stronger leaders are more successful because they practice learning-focused leadership, which leads to greater teams.

When leaders prioritize developing the talent of the team, it builds employee’s leadership skills that create a path for the development of future leaders within the team or organization. 

By implementing learning-oriented leadership practices, organizations can enjoy a wide range of benefits and set themselves up for success in the long run. 

Pros of Having a Good Learning Culture in an Organization

Having a good learning culture in an organization brings several benefits, including

  • Increased Employee Engagement: 
Increased Employee Engagement

A robust learning culture makes employees much more engaged by giving them a feeling of personal and professional growth. It creates a positive work environment where everyone feels valued.

When employees see that their company is actively supporting their professional growth by giving them the tools and resources to learn new skills, they are more likely to be proactive, increasing their overall work engagement.

  • Enhanced Creativity and Innovation:
Enhanced Creativity and Innovation

Employees need to be creative as it helps find unique solutions to problems. A continuous learning culture not only develops curiosity among employees but also makes them flexible and well-prepared to handle challenges.

It also brings motivation in employees so they can confidently explore new ideas, experiment with different approaches, and constantly expand their knowledge.

  • Improved Employee Performance: 
Improved Employee Performance

Companies with a strong learning culture typically have higher results and greater efficacy. When employees gain new skills and improve their current ones, it increases their overall work performance.

Learning opens doors for career advancement within the company by providing employees with additional knowledge and skill sets.

  • Increased Knowledge Sharing:
Increased Knowledge Sharing

Sharing knowledge develops new ideas and problem-solving abilities, leading to more skilled teams. Companies with a healthy learning culture create an environment where employees exchange information with their teammates or colleagues.

Learning from each other’s experiences will help you gain more knowledge and be more proficient at work. 

  • Inspires Leadership: 
Inspires Leadership

A learning culture allows leaders to create innovative business strategies and effective leadership practices. It also helps individuals to gain leadership skills that are vital to their professional growth.

Leadership plays a big role in inspiring others. When leaders promote learning, team members get motivated and take learning seriously. Leaders proactively guide, encourage, and train employees to reach their professional goals.

  • Improve Well-being: 
Improve Well-being

A company with a good learning culture indirectly contributes to the health and happiness of its employees. Employee well-being is very important for organizations to look into because it directly influences an individual’s overall quality of life, happiness, and ability to thrive.

Learning contributes to a sense of purpose. Employees who actively engage in continuous learning often find their work meaningful, resulting in higher satisfaction and a positive impact on overall well-being.

10 Top Practices for Promoting Learning in the Workplace

The following are some tried-and-tested practices for building a healthy learning culture in the workplace.

  • Invest in Skill Development: The 2022 Workplace Learning Report found that 46% of L&D leaders said that one of the main goals of their training initiatives was to help employees learn new skills and improve the ones they already have.

Organizations should strategically invest in talent development by identifying the required skills needed currently and in the future, to meet changing business needs.

Identifying the necessary skills makes it easy to organize a targeted training program or workshop that will assist employees develop such skills. Furthermore, investment in skill-building can benefit both employees and companies in the long run. 

  • Encourage Knowledge Trade: When employees are encouraged to share knowledge in the workplace, it nurtures collaboration and teamwork. 

In fact, knowledge exchange allows everyone to communicate openly to address specific work-related issues. Plus, individuals enjoy learning new things from their coworkers, when they see their peers benefitting from a certain training session they attended.

Learning from teammates will also provide practical knowledge applicable to actual scenarios, making the learning experience more relevant and accessible.

  • Try Various Training Approaches: A one-size-fits-all training approach is not the best choice for learning, since it does not properly address the varying needs of employees.

Organizations should use a range of training methods to better understand different learning styles and effectively deliver learning content to their employees. 

Some learners prefer hands-on learning, while others prefer online courses or mentorship programs. In such a situation, incorporating different learning methods would work better, for presenting information in multiple formats, to meet various learning objectives. 

In recent times, several learning techniques have been incorporated into training. Here are some of the popular ones

On-the-Job training

Peer-to-peer learning

Blended learning

eLearning

Mentoring

Mobile learning

Microlearning

Case studies

  • Make Learning Entertaining: When you add interactive elements to your training program, learning becomes entertaining as it enhances engagement and helps retain knowledge.

Include fun games in your learning program, such as quizzes, educational exercises, scenario-based challenges, group discussions, and hands-on tasks. 

You can also add multimedia like movies, animations, and infographics which will make the learning material more interesting and appealing for learners.

Such fun activities will assist learners in paying attention, maintaining focus, and understanding the training information well. 

  • Celebrate Learning Achievements: Celebrating success is very important for organizations as it reflects on the positive culture of a workplace that rewards the hard work and dedication of individuals. It also boosts the employee’s confidence and encourages them to bring their best to work every day. 

To celebrate learning achievements, organizations can host recognition ceremonies, present certificates or badges, and share success stories internally. 

The recognition leaves a long-lasting effect on learners, enhancing their morale, motivation, and job satisfaction. 

By appreciating their success, you can officially highlight individual accomplishments and inspire others to achieve their learning goals. 

  • Get Leaders Involved in Learning: Leaders set a good example when they participate in a training program. Their attitude towards learning conveys to the rest of the company that it is important for success. By seeing leaders prioritize learning, employees also begin to value it.

earning becomes more interesting when senior leaders share their knowledge and experience with others. Experiencing and knowing their entire journey can inspire the employees.

Additionally, leaders may provide support to training initiatives by helping out with learning resources, training schedules, budgeting, etc.

  • Make Learning a Part of Daily Life: Continued learning is very important for employees to stay current with their regular work. To make learning a habit, it must be integrated into a daily routine. Encourage your employees to do so.

Provide self-directed learning by giving learners access to online courses, books, and other resources. Meanwhile, you can instruct employees to share interesting articles or blog posts with other team members to collect relevant knowledge together. 

  • Keep Educational Data Easily Available: Ensure that employees can easily find and access learning material. If the data is not readily available, it will be difficult to use it when needed. 

Make learning resources mobile-friendly so that employees can access and learn them via smartphones at their convenience. 

Regularly update educational materials with fresh content and remove outdated information to maintain its relevance. If possible, present content in multiple formats such as videos, podcasts, infographics, interactive courses, and written materials.

  • Listen to The Learners: Learners are the ones who go through and experience the learning process. Get input from your employees. It will help you understand their needs, preferences, and challenges. 

When employees feel their opinions are valued, they feel 74% more engaged and effective at work as well as 71% more confident to share ideas for the future.

Learners can assist you in identifying specific skill gaps or knowledge they lack. Their recommendations can truly help you to close gaps in your existing training curriculum and improve the efficacy of your course material.

  • Share Feedback with Learners: Providing employees with continuous feedback is important to keep them engaged and motivated in learning. It also gives clarity about their learning performance.

Share feedback with learners right after they finish the learning activity. Help them understand where they did well and where they need improvement. Deliver feedback positively or neutrally, as negative feedback can make learners less motivated toward achieving their learning goals.

How Can I Improve My Workplace Learning?

Improve My Workplace Learning

These practical steps will enhance your workplace learning:

  • Create Learning Goals: First, identify what skills and knowledge you need to improve yourself in the workplace. Then, write down the specific talent you want to develop.

Make sure your learning goals are aligned with your particular job role, future career aspirations, and the needs of the company.

  • Identify Your Learning Style: Secondly, you have to see which style of learning you like or whether you are comfortable with it. A preferred learning style will make it easy to understand and retain the information. 

There are three primary learning styles: visual (learning through images and written materials), auditory (learning through listening), and kinesthetic (learning through hands-on experiences).

For example, if you remember things better by reading notes or picturing, you might be a visual learner, if you understand the information easily when someone explains it, then auditory learning is the best fit for you, and if you understand things more effectively while on-the-job,  you are a kinesthetic learner.

Experiment with various learning techniques to know your preferred style.

  • Set a Time Frame For Learning: Set aside time on your calendar for learning and stick to it. Allocating specific time slots will help manage your time more effectively. 

When you schedule time for learning, it becomes a regular part of your daily routine. Plus, it shows your commitment and dedication to learning.


  • Split Your Topics: Divide your concepts into smaller sections. It will make the learning easier to understand. Breaking down topics into smaller ones makes learning material easier to grasp and remember. This systematic approach will give you a good start to your learning journey.

For example, if you are learning a programming language like Python. So to learn everything about this coding language you should divide it into small categories. First, you will learn the basics of Python like syntax then move on to the next one like data structure, and later explore more advanced features like decorators or object-oriented programming. This structured approach will make it simpler to learn and retain information.

  • Take a Break: Taking a break is important as it allows learners to relax for some time. Research has shown that taking short breaks from studying strengthens memory consolidation, boosts mental stamina, and increases concentration power. You can try the Pomodoro technique for your learning schedules. This is a time management technique where you focus for 25 minutes on the task at hand, and then take a quick 5-minute break. You can do this cyclically until you are done with that day’s quota of learning,

  • Apply Your Knowledge Into Practice: It is paramount to apply what you’ve learned, in your day-to-day work. This will give you good practice as hands-on experience is necessary to remember the knowledge and information.

As you apply the knowledge you have learned, your confidence increases and you eventually become an expert at the task. Ultimately, feedback will help you understand how much preparation is left to reach your learning goal.

  • Seek Feedback: For personal and professional growth, it is very important to seek feedback, proactively. Feedback provides insights into your abilities and areas for improvement. 

You can get feedback from colleagues, mentors, or managers. They will help you identify the gaps in your knowledge and skills, and you can work on those areas accordingly.

Seeking feedback is essential for continuous learning and improvement in the workplace.

What are Some Ways of Informal Learning in a Company?

Informal learning is the process of acquiring knowledge and skills without using formal training or structured courses. Learners need to continue expanding their knowledge and abilities.

Informal learning usually happens through mentorship where well-experienced employees share insights and on-the-job training that involves hands-on experiences, and peer learning that happens through collaborative projects and discussions.

There are other kinds of informal learning methods such as social learning, podcasts, webinars, and more. By supporting informal learning, companies can create a culture of continuous improvement within the workplace.

Impact of L&D Programs on Employee Engagement

L&D Programs on Employee Engagement

Learning and development (L&D) is an essential component of employee engagement. It plays a crucial role in influencing employee engagement within an organization. 

According to this article by Harvard Business Review, Companies that take an experiential approach to employee engagement are shown to have 4x the profit and 2x the revenue as other companies.

Typically, engaged employees are active, energetic, and dedicated to their jobs. Let’s see how L&D activities influence and enhance employee engagement:

  • Increases Job Satisfaction: The biggest impact of learning and development on employee engagement is it increases job satisfaction. L&D programs provide employees an opportunity to learn new skills, grow, and move up in their careers. 

Companies that invest in learning and development show employees that they prioritize their professional development. It also gives a clear path for their career, increasing their chances of staying with the organization.

  • Boosts Employee Morale: Another impact of learning and development on employee engagement is it boosts employee confidence. L&D gives them the confidence to do their task properly.

When an employee takes part in the L&D program, they learn new skills and improve the old ones which doubles their skill set, thereby boosting their confidence.

  • Developed Continuous Improvement: The L&D program develops a culture of continuous improvement. When organizations encourage and support their employees, they are more willing to find opportunities to improve their performance.

L&D programs not only fill in skill gaps but also encourage employees to be proactive about learning in a fast-paced workplace.

  • Enhanced Employee Trust: L&D helps build trust in employees. When employees recognize that the company is committed to their welfare, their trust increases in the company and they are inspired to remain with the company for a longer time.

It is noteworthy that as per this report, 94% of employees would stay in their current role longer if the company invested in their professional development.

Investing in learning and development (L&D) programs shows that the company cares about the professional progress and well-being of employees.

  • Improves Communication and Collaboration: L&D programs help improve communication and collaboration among employees.

Effective communication allows everyone to express their thoughts and ideas clearly with others, thereby enhancing collaboration. Employees learn from each other through knowledge sharing and become empowered

How Learning Can Help in Creating Subject Matter Experts in a Company

Creating Subject Matter Experts in a Company

Learning is the most important part of developing expertise in a specific area as it provides individuals with the knowledge and information they need to become subject matter experts.

A subject matter expert (SME) is a professional who has great knowledge and expertise in a specific field or subject area. Subject matter experts typically learn about their industries through formal education, ongoing training, and hands-on experience. They also participate in mentorship programs and attend networking events to continue their learning.

Learning improves subject matter experts’ (SMEs’) problem-solving, critical-thinking, and analytics skills. Also keeps them up-to-date with market developments and ensures they remain informed about industry trends.

When provided with cross-functional training, their expertise becomes broader and more versatile. Overall learning empowers individuals to become experts and also creates an environment where it becomes easy to become a subject matter expert in their particular field.

How Can Subject Matter Experts Help with Creating Meaningful Content for Employees?

Experts who have a good knowledge of a specific topic, called Subject Matter Experts (SMEs), play a big role in creating high-quality and relevant content. They have a great understanding of the latest trends in their field so it becomes easy for them to deliver up-to-date information

SMEs provide content in various forms such as articles, training programs, webinars, videos, and case studies. They often use diverse learning methods to express their knowledge to ensure that employees can grasp and retain the information in a range of formats.

The content created by SMEs is designed to be helpful and relatively simple to understand, ensuring that content goes deep and provides value. Overall, subject matter experts give valuable contributions to provide meaningful content of the specific field.

Conclusion

There are many ways to develop a learning culture in the workplace. You can choose and implement one or more approaches according to your needs and requirements.

Investing in learning is beneficial for both employees and the organization. It helps every employee be proficient and qualified in the required abilities.

Learning ensures your employees will gain all the necessary skills and knowledge to succeed in their career goals and make valuable contributions to the company’s overall growth.

Here's how Airmeet Facilitates Learning and Development

FAQ

Most organizations, today, use a blended learning approach. It is a combination of online resources and traditional classrooms used to train learners. This learning approach provides flexibility and makes the training experience engaging and interesting.

Yes, organizations should encourage employees to take ownership of their learning as it fosters a proactive and self-driven approach. Gives learners the freedom to relate their learning to their personal and business goals.

Yes, top management should be concerned about L&D programs as they play a crucial role in the overall success and growth of the organization. To keep the company flexible and perform well in the long run, you must set clear goals for L&D.

Promote continuous learning at work by offering training opportunities, improving individual skills, and building a culture that values studying innovation, and knowledge transformation. Further, establish mentorship programs, and reward employees for their commitment to learning.

To promote organizational learning, you can develop a culture of knowledge-sharing, organize regular training programs, encourage collaboration & communication, and increase awareness among employees about the benefits of learning.

Learning helps employees gain new skills and expertise, improve problem-solving abilities, increase knowledge sharing, and develop leadership qualities. When employees consistently engage in these, their performance and the company’s business performance improve together.

Inculcating a culture of lifelong learning in employees has multiple benefits such as recruiting & retaining top talent, gaining management qualities, continuous upskilling, building a stronger employer brand, and a future-ready team.

Investing in human resource development (HRD) is smart spending that comes with various positive impacts like improved financial performance,  better client management, and better talent acquisition.

Related Reads

Incredible Companies Use Airmeet

Most loved Virtual Events Platform

Incredible Companies Use Airmeet