Traditional learning and development programs have remained mostly the same for a long time now and it wasn’t until hybrid learning came along as a new methodology that we started to recognize the weaknesses of the traditional system. Hybrid learning has removed a number of barriers to effective employee empowerment and development and in this article, we’re going to run through three of the key barriers and how hybrid learning breaks them down:
- One-size-fits-all. In traditional learning and development, you had to structure the material at one pace and one difficulty level – which meant that you were pitching things at the average level. Those who were more skilled felt they weren’t being challenged, and those who were struggling didn’t get the support that they needed. You were forced into a one-size-fits-all scenario. Hybrid learning changes that because of its ability to offer adaptive difficulty, curriculum personalization, and a program that fits the individual rather than the masses. This can all be delivered at scale and it’s a significant breakthrough when it comes to L&D solutions.
- Lack of data. In a traditional L&D setting, you are extremely limited in your ability to collect data on participant performance. While you might be able to collect some data from standardized tests every now and then, you just don’t have the granular information needed to adapt your program accordingly and provide the support that is needed to facilitate true development. Hybrid learning, on the other hand, is collecting data all the time and this can be analyzed in real-time to make adjustments as necessary. Every participant’s work is being constantly monitored and evaluated, allowing for more nuanced support and generally a smoother experience all round.
- Inefficient Use of Time. Traditional learning and development programs are slow and inefficient because you’ve got one instructor trying to cater to a large group of people. Your face time is limited and even if there are questions being asked, it’s rare that you can go into the detail needed because of the opportunity cost on a tight schedule. It just isn’t flexible enough to handle adjustments or confusion. Hybrid learning solves this because it commoditizes the material delivery so that things can scale, which then opens up the necessary time for one-on-one coaching and training for those who need it. The combination of technology and in-person development is much more efficient and effective than it was under the previous paradigm. It leverages the very best of digital learning.
Those three barriers alone are major contributors to why traditional learning and development can often fall short in its objectives. We have to shift how we think about employee development to account for the technological and social shifts we’ve seen in the past few years. Hybrid learning represents a wonderful opportunity to craft new learning experiences that inspire, encourage, and facilitate the kind of development that can transform organizations from the inside.
It’s incredibly exciting if we do say so ourselves.