Corporate learning was - and still is, in many cases - hierarchical in nature. Learners congregate in groups and turn to a sole expert when they need assistance, who monitors the situation like an exam invigilator or classroom teacher.
But is this really the best way to upskill your staff in the modern day? The development of alternative learning techniques - the kind accessible on advanced e-learning platforms - suggests that staff can learn just as much from one another as they can from an outsourced industry expert.
All the knowledge your employees need might already exist in house - it's simply a case of conducting social learning so this insight is shared.
How does social learning work?
The concept of social learning and idea-sharing has been around for many years. Nonetheless, it is more relevant than ever in today's environment, where digital connective networks and constant interaction are part and parcel of a typical workplace.
In its simplest form, social learning involves team members turning to one another for advice, guidance, support, knowledge and assistance. This can manifest itself in numerous ways, either through an interactive form of on-the-job training, a question-and-answer/brainstorming session held between employees, or online correspondence via e-learning software.
What are the benefits of social learning?
In order to upskill your staff, you need to ensure they are in the right frame of mind beforehand.
If employees like and respect their colleagues, they are far likelier to pay attention to what they have to say, doing their utmost to digest and remember information as to impress. The more competitive members of the team will also want to learn as much as possible, as quickly as possible, to stay near the top of the pack.
What's more, a culture of social learning can also lead to a strong sense of self-fulfilment and motivation within the workplace. Employees feel valued when they have the opportunity to share their knowledge with others, and social learning enables them to see their active contribution to the company.
Social learning in its modern form
Using Learn with Mobile, staff can upload everything they've learned and share it amongst fellow staff.
Consider the technical worker, who spends maybe a day and a half solving a knotty problem. If they share their solution via social learning, the next person who encounters the same issue will only take 10 minutes to crack the answer - even if the initial problem-solver has since left the organisation.
What's more, if any members of the team have a question, they no longer need to wait around for a window where a senior executive is free to provide a response. Instead, they can check if their issue is already documented on the learning platform, or they can use the built-in communication technology to ask their fellow staff (much in the same vein as people do on community-driven Q&A domains like Yahoo! Answers).
However, unlike with Q&A sites, any inquiries are likely to yield an insightful answer. It will always be someone within the same field who responds to the query, and someone the question-asker is probably familiar with, too.
Learn with Mobile facilitates social learning for any organisation seeking new, effective, affordable and practical avenues in which to train up any new or current staff. Discover more about improving skills in your team via peer-to-peer learning.
If you're looking to educate in a fresh, affordable, and rewarding way, check out fully mobile responsive e-learning solutions using Learn with Mobile. Get started for free right now, or call the Ambidect team on +44 (0)1260 221292 if you have any questions.