A learning organization is the ultimate competitive advantage.
– Jack Welsh, SkillSoft Perspectives 2014
My organization’s stated top value is Learning.
It is the first word on the wall of the IT Coffee room in VA.
By observed behavior, our organization seems to believe this is for our students.
But what about our staff?
What about our faculty outside their field of specialty?
There are too many examples where the best customer service organizations provide their employees with the model that they wish the employees to serve the customer. Disney and Nordstroms being two famous examples.
Why not higher ed?
Why would we expect students to learn or want to learn anything if we, as staff and faculty, don’t model that ourselves?
So what would that entail? What observable behaviors would there need to be?
– How often are they collaborating? Are people actually talking to each other?
+ Within the department?
+ Outside the department and within the University?
+ Outside the University walls?
– How often are people reaching for help?
+ Are they leveraging self-serve resources?
+ How much time are they spending looking for said resources?
– What triggers people to look for resources?
+ How much of this stuff is “mandatory” or “assigned”
+ How much is related to their job or a performance evaluation
+ More interesting to me – how much of this is self-motivated?
These are a few behaviors that come to mind.
Questions that could be answered, to a certain extent, by some of our systems – audit trails in our communications systems, web page analytics, and even our LMS.
Defining what a “Learning Organization” means to us will be some of the most important conversations I have over the next year if I am really going to get this Learning Ecosystem of ours to sing.