The unprecedented changes of the recent past have created a radical reworking of the corporate work system. Navigating this shift hasn’t been easy, but most companies have managed it while realizing that now is a good time to raise the bar and focus on strengthening e-learning capabilities that will sustain even in the post-pandemic future. It is clear that traditional training and skill-building programs are no longer sufficient.
As virtual working has become a norm, learning initiatives in the form of more collaborative social experiences are growing in popularity and are showing potential as an effective way of learning and working.
What Is Social Learning and How to Incorporate it in L&D
As is known, some of the most powerful learning happens outside formal training sessions. Often, a lot of what employees learn in the workplace occurs through interactions with peers, observations and informal discussions. In fact, when new employees join a company, one of the first few interactions they have is with colleagues which helps them learn how the company functions. Most often, information is shared in the form of bite-sized learning nuggets that helps them understand the ropes of the system.
This is the base of Social Learning – a trending topic in L&D circles. With the onset of new technologies and skills becoming obsolete rapidly, Social Learning is an effective e-learning technique for businesses that are looking out for new ways to enhance their employees’ capabilities.
There are various forms that Social Learning can take when it comes to corporate learning including peer chats, team collaboration, forums and networks, self-paced learning, communities or even blogs. With the help of modern digital tools like social software, multimedia and other technology, employees can easily interact with teams across the organization, fulfilling their curiosity and satisfying their learning needs.
There are several benefits of Social Learning to bolster the overall learning and development strategy of a company:
Often learners tend to tune out of traditional learning sessions because they may find them boring. Social Learning, on the other hand, is interactive, with activities that spike interest levels and increase learner engagement. Moreover, interacting in social groups to communicate and share experiences appeals to most which mean Social Learning works as a great way to impart knowledge.
- Encourages Continuous Learning
Social Learning initiatives give a boost to a continuous learning culture within an organization because employees start to look at it as an ongoing process to enrich their careers. This outlook supports their personal as well as professional development while leading to organizational growth in the long run.
The end goal of most learning and development initiatives has to be increasing the productivity of the business. Once employees start interacting and networking with their peers on forums, they tend to assimilate and share knowledge and get their questions answered. This helps improve their performance and overall business productivity.
When employees reach out to each other and connect over issues they are facing, it gives rise to a collaborative environment in the workplace. They tend to support each other and even stand by each other if required. Such a collaborative setting goes a long way in creating a positive workplace culture that cultivates growth.
One of the best ways to encourage Social Learning in the organization is by leveraging a robust LMS that allows creating of Communities, Discussion Boards, Micro-Blogging and so much more. UpsideLMS offers an Informal Learning module that provides a unique way for people to learn from one another via social media and knowledge collaboration tools through the online training platform.
Learn more about our Social Learning tools.