Not long until the end of the year which means not long for you and your teams to spend all of your learning budgets. It can be really challenging to know what to spend your budget on as there are so many amazing learning opportunities available to us both online and offline. Learning has become so accessible that the challenge has become how to know where to spend your time, money and effort.
Enter Melissa Andrada
, COO Learnerbly
. Learnerbly is an online learning platform that helps individuals manage their own learning budget by providing curated learning offerings (online and offline). On this week’s podcast, Melissa and I sit down to talk about how to approach learning both for yourself and for your team members.
It was great to get Melissa’s insight and perspective. There’s one key piece that Melissa shares which I think is worth highlighting; the importance of finding your purpose. I see a lot of people signing up to courses, events, etc… because they’ve been told by a mentor or manager that they should take it but not because they connect to it in any way. You can take a guess at what happens? They learn nothing.
Learning has to come from you and it cannot be forced (think back to all of your compulsory Uni classes 😉). This means taking the time to really understand what you’re all about and what you want to become. As Melissa states it’s important to focus on understanding your purpose. If you don’t do this for yourself you won’t be able to do it for your teams.
Take some time to reflect on 2017 and highlight what brought you energy and what took it away. You may have convinced yourself that progressing a more senior manager role, for example, is the right thing for you because it ‘looks good’ but it doesn’t mean it’s right for you. Focus on what you’ve felt most proud of, what you enjoyed most and where you were really able to stretch yourself. This will give you key cues into how you can make the most of your learning. You can’t do it all so be laser-focused on what either comes naturally to you or you get a lot out of. Once you’ve identified those then look at how you can hone in on that skill set or identify which knowledge areas would be complementary.
If you want to improve in any way you have to be clear on what YOU are working towards and WHY.
When choosing a learning module here’s what to think about:
1) Know what works for you (are you a classroom learner, online videos, reading, one to one, etc?)
2) Realistic with your commitment (make sure you have consistent and non-interrupted time available for you to really let everything sink in, you can’t rush or hack learning)
3) Carve time out in the diary (Prioritise your learning by scheduling time in the diary and being precious about keeping it free)
It is easy to make everything and everyone else a priority but if you don’t have learning top of mind you could risk stagnating. The world around us is changing rapidly so it’s important for team leaders to be able to be a couple steps ahead of the game.
“Time to focus on progression”. - Jabbar Hakeem, Purpose