SDLearning designs and delivers interventions that develop the skills of individuals and meet organisational goals. We achieve this by working closely with our clients to understand their organisational culture and development objectives. Our priorities are focus, output, evaluation and ensuring that resources are specifically targeted to meeting the needs of your organisation.
Our programmes are research-based and practical. Much of the research we use is drawn from the work of our sister company, Corporate Research Forum (CRF). To find out more about CRF, visit the website.
We believe development should:
- help productivity by improving performance
- help people within your organisation to work smarter
- ensure that your organisation is in good shape for the future
- promote personal growth and effectiveness
We believe there needs to be a clear connection and ‘line of sight’ between the needs of your organisation and the learning solution offered.
With the constant need to reduce organisational costs, development can make a significant contribution towards cost reduction. These are some of the methods:
- Ensuring that the organisation develops a core competence in cost reduction using techniques such as TQC, project management, supply chain management or negotiation. This is not about ‘turning off the lights’ but attacking the big issues
- Helping managers manage performance and help individuals improve their performance on the job
- Creating the right ‘mentality’ and the right climate of positive cost efficiency
- By making sure that key employees are outstandingly good in money related activities, such as selling, negotiating, buying and doing the important before the urgent.
High Performance Organisations
More than ever, organisations rely on their people to achieve and sustain competitive advantage. Organisations are implementing management systems and HR practices with greater employee involvement to increase productivity and quality, and to gain the competitive advantage of a workforce strategically aligned with the organisation’s goals and objectives. Training and development is a vital element of high performance organisations. They depend on employee competence and initiative to facilitate organisational change and achieve strategic goals.
We can help you to ensure that:
You improve management skills in terms of selection, motivation, retention, development and leadership
You have ability to operate in a constantly changing, challenging and increasingly international context.
Developing these competences must be a business imperative. We design and develop learning solutions, which are bespoke for your organisation.
How do Adults Learn?
Much research has been conducted into how adults learn. Many of us are familiar with double-loop learning, Kolb’s Learning Cycle and Kirkpatrick’s evaluation methodology. But what does it mean in practice? We believe that, in a nutshell:
- We need time to learn new things and to reflect on what we have learned and how to apply it in the workplace
- Relevant and current case studies are important tools. We need feedback to assist our learning. A good coach tells us what we are doing well and what we need to do to improve (not just once, but repeatedly)
- Seeing an example of a good one is often helpful as an example of how to ‘do it’
- Motivation is a critical component. Whilst inner motivation is important, external motivation by the boss or whoever is pivotal
- Relevance is a key component and this applies both to the business context in which learning takes place and to our own situation in relation to it. The learning should be relevant to the business and relevant to the individual
- The right physical conditions are important, especially when learning requires intense periods of concentration. In this sense a quiet room is often better than a busy desktop with lots of phones and people! (Desktop learning sometimes forgets this). Moreover, the right conditions within the organisation need to exist and if the climate is wrong, individuals become preoccupied with survival rather than development
- Repetition is important in as much as once you have done something for the third or fourth time, you are normally better at it than the first time around
- Having a chance to apply something gives you a chance to practice, see how it works in context and is connected to the relevance point made above. Learning something that you never use is unfulfilling
- Individuals learn in different ways (as illustrated by Kolb)
- At the same time, the learning method has to be appropriate in that you cannot learn to drive a car by reading about it. Equally, knowing you have a weakness does not mean you can correct it. Our approach is to build on strengths
- The best organisations need Training and Development of outstanding quality – high standards and stretching goals are important if we are to make what is good even better.
Delivering High Quality Learning Events
Each development initiative should be subjected to rigorous analysis to ensure we know exactly what we are doing and why.
- In a business focussed organisation, every learning initiative should have: objectives, a clear customer, sponsor, programme owner, stated list of beneficiaries, a project plan and a set of predetermined, expected outcomes
- Each development initiative should address a clear primary or secondary business need
- We should evaluate and validate whatever we undertake.
Strategic Dimensions Learning can assist you to improve performance in Learning and Development. We have access to leading trainers and developers, world-class thinking, benchmarking and leading edge research.
We combine in-depth expertise in training and development together with a business focussed and personal approach. Analysis, delivery and attention to detail are critical features of our approach.