Picture this: it’s a typical Monday morning in your office, and your employees are bustling around, grabbing coffee and catching up on weekend activities. Amidst the chatter and the clatter, a crucial process is taking place – one that has the potential to drive your company’s success to new heights. It’s called informal learning, and it’s changing the game in employee engagement.
What is Informal Learning?
Informal learning is the process by which employees acquire knowledge and skills through daily interactions, experiences, and observations. Unlike traditional, structured training programs, informal learning occurs organically and often without conscious effort. Examples include learning from colleagues, participating in online forums, reading articles, or engaging in project-based tasks.
Why Informal Learning Matters for Employee Engagement
Employees today crave more than just a paycheck; they want to feel valued, challenged, and connected to their work. Studies have shown that employees who are engaged are more likely to stay at their current company, contribute to its success, and be productive. Informal learning opportunities can help facilitate this engagement by providing:
- Autonomy: Allowing employees to explore their interests and learn at their own pace can lead to increased motivation and job satisfaction.
- Collaboration: Informal learning often involves collaboration with colleagues, helping to build strong social connections and a sense of belonging within the organization.
- Relevance: By emphasizing real-world applications and problem-solving, informal learning makes training more relevant and meaningful to employees.
Real-World Examples of Informal Learning in Action
One Fortune 500 company revamped its onboarding process by incorporating informal learning into the mix. Instead of relying solely on classroom-style training, new hires were assigned project-based tasks that required them to collaborate with seasoned employees. This not only helped new employees get up to speed quickly but also fostered strong relationships and teamwork within the organization.
A Learning & Development professional at another major corporation shared, “We started to prioritize informal learning by setting up an internal social network for employees to share relevant articles, videos, and ideas. The platform has become a valuable resource for professional growth and has led to increased engagement and innovation.”
How Learnexus Can Help
Informal learning is an essential component of a well-rounded employee engagement strategy. Learnexus is the premier freelancer marketplace for Learning & Development, designed to help companies like yours quickly and easily find and hire freelancers with highly specific skills and experience in this field. By leveraging Learnexus, you can tap into a talent pool that is primed to help you develop and implement informal learning opportunities that drive employee engagement, improve performance, and ultimately, elevate your organization’s success.
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