L&D Will Be Responsible for the Survival of Organizations

As organizations fight to survive, their learning and development (L&D) teams will lead the way. 

This is a position taken in a recent blogpost by eLearning Industry columnist and Tata consultant Sahana Chattopadhyay.

The war for talent will continue to increase, as companies struggle to identify, hire and retain individuals with high-demand skills.  Ten years ago job titles like UX Designer, Cloud Developer, or Data Scientist hardly existed.  Now, these are some of the most in-demand jobs — across all industries, not just information technology.

However, rather than place the burden on the recruiting department, L&D leaders can assume the responsibility of training employees to meet current and future needs of the organization.

Organizations will “re-imagine their current workplace learning practices to focus on building skills in-house, to reskill and upskill their existing talent base to remain relevant, and also to make continuous learning a fundamental part of the organization’s DNA,” notes Chattopadhyay.

But L&D goes beyond simply providing the necessary training that employees need to do their jobs.  L&D should be tasked with thinking about the skillsets that the organization needs before it even knows it needs them.

As such, L&D needs to transition from being reactive to being proactive:  assessing the landscape for roles, responsibilities, and tasks, and suggesting or designing training before a department is even aware. Chattopadhyay calls these ‘unknown skills.’

Karen Kocher, Chief Learning Officer of Cigna, shares the same view.  Kocher is a popular speaker on the topic of organizations needing to look to the training organization to map their future.  In an interview last year posted on YouTube, when asked about her biggest challenge as a CLO, Karen’s response was, ‘staying one step ahead of the business.’

My job is to make sure that we have talent that is capable of doing all that we need it to do in advance of the business, and in a lot of cases, even realizing that it’s necessary.

— Karen Kocher, CLO, Cigna

L&D can help fight the war for talent by training and equipping current employees with skills which the organization does not need to seek outside of it.  According to the Chattopadhyay, it’s time to recognize that there is no time to ‘design a course’ for every skill-gap in the world.

‘We have to tap into the collective wisdom of the crowd (employees) and enable them to become facilitators of their own learning,’ she writes.

Cognota® was created for the sole purpose of meeting this organizational need.  With Cognota, employees can learn from employees and strengthen the organization’s most important asset: intellectual capital.  

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L&D Will Be Responsible for the Survival of Organizations