Every day, all of us engage in micro-learning as we flick through news headlines, browse social media sites or check a restaurant’s reviews on Yelp. We have grown accustomed to accessing and digesting short bursts of information when we need and want it on our smartphones, tablets and even on our wrists!
So why not apply this same concept to how you onboard, train and develop your people?
If you think about the world in which we live, micro-learning really fits. Our attention spans are decreasing, time is at a premium, and in most industries, we are doing more with less. Micro-learning has allowed our clients to ﬁll their performance gaps more quickly. Learners are not required to sit all day in a lengthy course, but can simply access the speciﬁc modules when needed to improve knowledge.
As effective as micro-learning is, at Aegis Performance Group we don’t advocate that our clients switch to offering training only through micro-learning – we have learned through experience that a blended learning program that incorporates the best of traditional and modern methods has maximum impact. Our clients who see the best results are the ones who tie learning to their organizations’ business strategy, identify the skills necessary to achieve that strategy, and then embrace a blended style of development that fits how their people best learn.
When micro-learning is delivered in a consistent, ongoing way, you can drive continuous learning, build knowledge over time, and produce long-term behavior change. These are the kinds of changes that allow for better communication, collaboration, and innovation. Organizations that recognize the importance of fostering continuous learning are the ones that will have a much better chance of outlasting their competition and becoming a place where talented, committed people come to work.
Micro-Learning in Action
Partnering with a healthcare client, we used micro-learning to reinvent their onboarding program. They have a three-month gap from the time their new clinicians “sign on the dotted line” to when they first “don their scrubs.” To make them not only feel connected to their new organization and peers but begin the process of helping them understand their new work environment and its requirements, we built a 12-week pre-board program. This process helps them navigate their new organization and remind them of the myriad of forms and deadlines they must complete to be fully credentialed and privileged in the system. Each week new staff receive a micro-assignment that gives them one topic to focus on each week. Sometimes it’s just something to share, to do or complete. Other times it’s a reminder to call in and check on the status of their documentation. These short bursts are helping them reduce the feeling of information overload by breaking it down into small, digestible chunks each week. These micro-assignments also get a human touch with the use of videos, follow up phone calls with HR, mentors and their new leaders.
We didn’t stop there – we continue the onboarding process for their first six weeks with a short weekly burst of information and resources around compliance, protocols and even where to get lunch! Feedback from new staff has been overwhelming – they feel more connected, confident and ready sooner to jump in and begin their new journey – a win-win for them, their new colleagues and patients.
Interested in how you can improve assimilation, engagement and development of your people, no matter where they are in their employment life cycle?