The following post was featured in eLearning Industry on April 14th, 2015.
We know you’ve seen it. Your employees sit in a day-long training session watching presenter after presenter. They fight drowsiness, boredom and distractions as they listen to more and more information that sucks the life out of any brainpower they have left. And all they can think about is their growing to-do list that is only getting longer by the minute.
Reinvigorate Your Workforce
The traditional corporate learning model is broken. Yet, US spending on corporate training grew 15% in 2013 to more than $70 Billion in the US and more than $130 Billion worldwide. That’s a lot of money to fork out on training that doesn’t work. Add to this the fact that 90% of new skills learned during corporate training are lost within a year and these high costs just doesn’t make good business sense.
Today’s forward-thinking leaders know corporate learning is poised for disruption, and they’re not afraid to break the rules. They’re ditching tradition in favor of innovative eLearning technology and leadership practices that drive information retention and accelerate the business. And, in literally minutes a day, they’re seeing employees increase their knowledge and feel reinvigorated as they tackle their to-do lists.
John Knoble, Director of Commercial Learning at Ethicon (a division of Johnson & Johnson) is a prime example of a leader who is challenging the training status quo. He’s launching a learning revolution through daily intelligent information reinforcement, fun gamified learning bursts and real-time data driven feedback.
Intelligent Information Reinforcement
The traditional “one and done” approach to training wasn’t helping Ethicon’s professional sales associates. Knoble knew he needed to find a way to increase training effectiveness. So, as part of his new learning approach, he invested in an eLearning platform that reinforced training in bite-sized chunks—a technique proven to increase knowledge retention.
The eLearning platform assesses reps’ individual knowledge levels continually and presents them with targeted questions each day to test and reinforce the information they need to know. This daily reinforcement has had a dramatic increase in sales reps’ information retention and confidence.
Fun, Gamified Learning Bursts
Research proves that taking time out to give the brain a rest allows employees to recharge and approach their work with more focus and energy. In fact, a study from the Draugiem Group found that the distinguishing factor of the most productive employees was the fact that they took regular breaks.
With this in mind, Knoble leveraged the gamification elements in the company’s eLearning platform to weave training into the workday—giving reps a reason to take a fun break from their regular to-dos, while still feeling productive.
Sales reps can use downtime between customer engagements for a quick, 3-4 minute learning ‘burst,’ allowing them to play a game and refresh their knowledge before their attention shifts to the next pressing task. The game play and friendly competition with peers has driven voluntary participation rates as high as 90%.
Real-Time, Data-driven Feedback
Feedback is an effective way to keep employees motivated. In fact, research indicates companies can see a 14.9% decrease in turnover rates by giving employees regular feedback. It can also boost engagement.
Instead of waiting for annual performance reviews to assess employee progress, instant mobile updates through the eLearning platform give Knoble a real-time play-by-play of his team’s learning progression, allowing him to respond immediately.
By ‘tapping into the mind’ of the entire sales organization each day, the Ethicon learning team has the data to identify which areas require additional learning and which areas are strong. Ethicon mangers can coach the individuals who are struggling in certain areas before they become discouraged. The learning team can also proactively assess training materials regularly to support the company’s strategic products and keep those ‘top of mind,’ while developing sales skills that are the sharpest in the field.
Minutes a Day Add Up to Hours of Value
As Ethicon’s experience shows, by implementing next-generation learning methodologies, employees stay engaged and at the top of their game, while driving the corporate bottom line.
Knoble says by continuously reinforcing learning every day, Ethicon has fundamentally changed the effectiveness of knowledge delivery to its sales teams. Knowledge lifts have increased in some topic areas by as much as 49% and the staff is increasing their selling power—All without the need to bring people into the training classroom, and at an annual cost for the entire organization that is less than a single training program.
Written by Carol Leaman