New Ways To Learn How To Give Recognition

Instructor led training (ILT) has always been the mainstay for helping people to learn the soft and hard skills that organizations need for many years.

In fact, I recall how when I first started providing education and training on effective employee recognition skills twenty years ago, that I was being asked to design and develop 1 and 2-day training programs. These days you’re lucky to get access to managers and leaders for even half a day.

But as Josh Bersin, founder of Bersin by Deloitte and global research analyst says, “learning in the flow of work is one of the most powerful levers available to business leaders today.”

That is what we should do with learning. Learning happens at work when the learner is ready to learn.

What are some new ways that managers and employees can learn to give better recognition to others?

1. Adaptive Learning. Adaptive learning is a new learning method where employees receive learning content they need in a way that works best for them.

This method typically uses computer-based learning through a learning management system. Adaptive learning works by tracking how an employee answers questions and then adapts the learning path tailored to each employee based on their responses.

By doing this, the learning path can go a step up if easy or a step down if difficult, or even in a different direction. Learners only see personalized content based on assessment tools to ensure they don’t receive content they are proficient in.

Whether recognition practices or better use of your recognition programs, imagine having learning content that can adapt to the individual needs of managers and employees alike.

2. Micro-Learning. This is online delivered learning content for learning in bite-size chunks that are very behavioral and objective. At Rideau we have developed behavioral based e-learning modules that address the learning of specific, targeted recognition behaviors, deemed essential in effective recognition. 

Learners take a recognition skills assessment, which then prescribes the selection of courses the employee needs in priority of importance based on their strengths and weaknesses.

Quizzes and an opportunity to implement their own learning goal for each module allows them to practice the behavior they need to improve in.

The popularity of video-based sites like YouTube has promoted the use of more videos in training. Video-based learning will continue to become the norm for learning soft-skill training like recognition giving.

3. Artificial Intelligence. The area of artificial intelligence, or AI, is stepping up the pace with e-learning. 

The algorithms developed through Artificial Intelligence predict a learner’s behavior and help personalize needed learning. Consider tracking the learning modules you’ve taken and any difficulties or challenges you encountered. All of this information allows the system to personalize learning material delivered to you. Now with messaging and voice-guided bots, learners can select what they receive next and even search for key content in learning modules. 

Think of it like Netflix or Amazon suggesting the next item to view or read. This level of personalization comes from targeting methods, automatic optimization, and other metrics, to generate tailored content.

And speaking of reading content, AI can use Smart Content curation where it draws upon existing content and dynamically presents exactly what you want based on your interests, needs, and past viewing behavior.

4. Gamification. Game-based learning has proven to be a powerful engagement strategy to get employees involved and retaining learning material better.

Learning professionals design online learning using game mechanics to drive the learners through the learning. They use badges, points, levels, and a leaderboard to motivate students to engage with the learning material by offering rewards and incentives. 

Learning materials can comprise videos, web-based learning, infographics, post casts, and simple exercises, and then reward learners to encourage participation and completion.

5. Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality. Virtual reality (VR) is using a computer generated, fully artificial environment where a learner is fully immersed into a virtual environment. Augmented reality (AR) operates by overlaying virtual objects onto the real-world environment through technology. 

Virtual reality training allows you to augment classroom-based training or e-learning of recognition skills by putting the learner into the artificial work environment so they can practice the skills for better transfer of learning. And you could also go straight to VR to learn new skills like effective recognition giving.

Learning soft skills through VR provides greater opportunity to develop and gain practical experience of recognition giving in as close to the real-world scenario as possible.

6. Social Learning. Social learning is a collaborative learning method between employees to learn new skills and knowledge. 

This can be as simple as online forums, informal chat sessions, and learning circles. Companies are using more collaboration tools like Slack or online chat tools, and videoconference platforms. In this informal social learning approach they can help people share their successes and their frustrations with giving meaningful recognition to others. It can even be as simple as an on-site or virtual lunch and learn to learn recognition techniques or latest recognition program.

The key to learning effective recognition skills in new ways is aiding employees to learn their way what they need to learn. Even peer-to-peer learning is a great way to learn new knowledge and skills.

These are just a few of the new learning methods available to apply to your recognition learning in the workplace.

Recognition Reflection: What are the most effective learning methods you use to engage employees and managers in learning to give better recognition to people? 

Roy is no longer writing new content for this site (he has retired!), but you can subscribe to Engage2Excel’s blog as Engage2Excel will be taking Roy’s place writing about similar topics on employee recognition and retention, leadership and strategy.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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