• Learning

Learning Power

How organizations use learning to increase their potential to succeed

Wednesday 05 October 2016


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As the spread of globalization and the speed of technology relentlessly advance, employees are having to deal with more complex issues in an increasingly uncertain and fast-moving world. As this increase in velocity of activity and change proceeds, and causes heightened challenges for managers and executives, so digital transformation is also putting the knowledge employees need to make sense of these issues, right at their fingertips.

But the presence of timely knowledge and data alone does not resolve the challenges employees face. To make knowledge work, employees need to make sense of it, learn it and apply it. With curiosity, judgement, sense-making, creativity, collaborative and reflective learning skills, today’s employees need the ‘power of learning’ to make knowledge work.

Register for the one-day Masterclass here

Tim Coburn will be leading a one-day MasterClass in Singapore on 'The Power of Learning - How Organizations Use Learning to Increase their Potential to Succeed' on 3rd November. Click here for more details.

In the world of work, learning agility is known as the strongest indicator of the potential to succeed. The advantage of learning over everything else means companies want to extend it to all employees. The Learning Agility competency model is complex. Its 27 dimensions are not easy to remember, it is tied to an expensive assessment instrument and the strategies for improving it are the same as those for developing behavioural competences. Increasingly, companies are looking for models that can be used more widely by all employees and in particular, that leaders can use to improve learning ability in their teams.

In extensive research led by the Graduate School of Education at the University of Bristol in the UK, a new understanding of learning ability has been identified. The most effective learners use eight interdependent ‘dispositions’ (a combination of ability and inclination) which they collectively call ‘learning power’. These include openness and a willingness to learn, curiosity, sense-making and creativity; collaboration and hope and optimism.

To the non-researcher, these dimensions of learning feel intuitively right – we recognize them because we already use them in our own working lives. The researchers also found, while some dimensions may be stronger or used more often than others, they exist in all of us and with practice, all of them can be improved. And that is why it is so attractive to organizations who need to learn, adapt and change.

Learning power offers corporate organizations many advantages:

  • It’s a memorable set of eight qualities that all employees have
  • It’s a language for learning everyone can use
  • It’s a critical capability everyone can improve

For those who see learning as a key to realizing the human potential of organizations, focusing on learning power is clearly attractive. Increasing employees’ awareness of their learning potential – and the impact that enhancing their learning ability can make – is the first step in strengthening these abilities. The learning power model allows individuals to quickly understand their own learning strengths and weaknesses and then allows them to take action to improve on these areas. The cross-over to good leadership is strong; many of the key learning dispositions are critical in leadership, too.

Learning power offers further advantages for the designers and facilitators of learning:

  • It gives consultants, coaches and facilitators a new lever for improving corporate performance
  • It gives leadership specialists a practical tool for leaders to improve the learning ability of their teams
  • It gives organizations a great new resource for building a culture of learning

And for those who create and deliver learning experiences, the eight dimensions offer a new set of criteria for designing solutions that engage the whole person in self-motivated, authentic and inquiry-led learning, focused on improving what really matters to them.

With an understanding of learning power, facilitators and coaches are able to improve their clients’ performance and improve their ability to learn, at the same time.

Join the Accelerance MasterClass 'The Power of Learning - How Organizations Use Learning to Increase their Potential to Succeed' - 3rd November, Singapore.


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