Some interesting tips from Megatrends in MOOCS: #5 Lifelong Learning about how companies can take advantage of the lifelong learning trend mainly by supporting and recognizing their employees’ learning initiatives. In a recent article for Entrepreneur, Pluralsight CEO Aaron Skonnard identified several tactics businesses can use to create a culture of learning. Here is how these tactics can be used to support employee learning in MOOCs:
- Weekly lunch and learns. Once a week, buy lunch and have an employee present what he or she is learning in a MOOC. This can help spread knowledge and also create an environment where learning is seen as a priority.
- Training budgets and tuition reimbursement and recognition programs. MOOCs are free to take, but verified certificates cost anywhere between about $40 and $100. Reimburse your employees for these expenses—this practice will both encourage employees to take courses and demonstrate that you support their professional development. Plus, it is a lot cheaper than developing and running an in-house course!
- Set specific learning goals. Encourage employees to set learning goals every quarter and then check in with them on how they are doing. For example, managers can monitor their employees’ progress through MOOCs and provide support when necessary. Training departments can track learning efforts to identify and support organization-wide learning efforts.
- Distribute books to read. For MOOCs, this tactic can be changed to “vet and recommend courses.” There are hundreds of MOOCs available—training departments can support employee learning efforts by vetting courses and making specific recommendations.
- Acknowledge the results. This is the big one—don’t let your employees’ training efforts go unnoticed. Treat MOOC accomplishments the way you would any other training program.