Learning in a hybrid world: new methods for a new workplace

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Purpose: Organizations face a paradox. Because of the disruptions of COVID-19, learning and development was largely put on hold. However, this disruption also changed the value proposition for employees: they expect learning and development to be prioritized. The purpose of this paper is to resolve this paradox by providing a strategic framework that increases the capacity for workplace learning within the constraints of a hybrid world. Design/methodology/approach: Although the COVID-19 disrupted shifted when and where employees learn, it did not change how learning occurs. Therefore, this paper draws from research on workplace learning, cognitive science and neuroscience to develop a conceptual framework of workplace learning and provide practical guidance on how leaders can support it in a hybrid world. Findings: This paper presents a new framework for workplace learning. First, this paper identifies seven key workplace learning behaviors. This paper addresses why a focus on behavior over outcomes is strategically advantageous for hybrid learning. Second, this paper details the opportunities, resources and leadership behaviors that enable each behavior. Research limitations/implications: This paper provides scholars with a new approach to learning and opens avenues for research on the antecedents of workplace learning behaviors, as well as understanding how the behaviors interact over time. Practical implications: This paper helps executives make strategic decisions about hybrid learning based on the science of learning. This paper also provides key tactics for how to encourage and enable employees to learn in remote or hybrid environments. Originality/value: Although there is an abundance of research on individual, team and organizational learning, there is little guidance on what strategies leaders can use to enable learning in the moment, when it is needed most. This paper reorients learning strategy away from learning outcomes to focus on the behaviors that are required to achieve those outcomes. In doing so, this paper provides a model for learning how to learn in a hybrid world.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Business Strategy
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2022

Keywords

  • Adaptive learning
  • Employee learning
  • Expertise development
  • Leading learning
  • Learning behaviors
  • Learning strategy
  • Workplace learning

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