Following the initial shock of lockdown and the complete cessation of all our face to face training events, the last twelve months has seen us take a fascinating and, at times, challenging journey to becoming a complete virtual training provider. Although we were fortunate to have some of the key foundations in place, we’ve certainly had to learn a lot in a short time to get to the point where we’re now offering a service that we strongly believe provides an even more effective solution to our participants and a better overall investment for our stakeholders.
Outlined below we’ve shared a few of our key observations and thoughts on what we’ve learnt, what’s changed and the wider impact.
- The biggest single change is that virtual delivery has enabled us to bring the sessions directly into the workplace, therefore helping the participants integrate what they are working on into ‘live’ situations. We’ve completely removed the concept of ‘going’ on a training course.
- Virtual delivery has also enabled us to accelerate our commitment to the ‘little and often’ philosophy, making it much easier to organise shorter, flexible sessions delivered on a regular basis. No more time-heavy, difficult to organise one or two day workshops.
- Shorter sessions have helped sharpen the focus on real life situations and overcoming practical challenges. Theories, models and assessments are now explored outside the classroom, freeing up the precious time spent working together.
- Wider use of technology has ‘shrunken’ the world considerably and enabled the straightforward, roll-out of global management programmes. It’s removed the need for environmentally damaging flights and prohibitively costly trainer expenses.
- One to one support must be an integral part of every programme. It not only helps participants overcome their personal challenges but it also ensures they embed the learning.
- Virtual webinars have opened up learning and development to a wider audience. L&D is now thoroughly scalable and accessible in a way that the classroom rarely offered.
- Where appropriate, we’ve ramped up the amount of tasks and activities that participants must complete outside of the classroom, in some cases creating a more self-paced or ‘distance’ learning approach. All of which has massively increased the levels of application and participant accountability to put things into practice.
Olly Osmond, Sales Director