Tired of bland organizational trainings? Let's take a look at how you can incorporate blended learning strategies into your approach for a more flavorful experience your employees will crave.
“If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?”
Whether you’ve been asked this by a friend on the playground or by someone struggling to get the conversation going on a first date, this is a question we’ve all been asked. And why is it such a popular inquiry?
Because of the inner turmoil it sparks as you have to consider how much you would miss all the other foods while becoming more and more repulsed by your favorite food as you’re forced to eat it for every single meal.
Guess what. This same principle applies to learning.
Even if the learning strategy you’re offering is a learner’s FAVORITE way to learn, they will quickly get sick of it if it’s the ONLY strategy being used. Mixing up how you teach with blended learning strategies adds the variety learners crave, and it is essential to maintaining relevance with your learning experiences.
Let’s take a look at what blended learning strategies entail, why this approach builds in a significant advantage to the learning experiences of your organization, and we’ll explore some concrete examples that clearly illustrate how blended learning strategies can foster employee growth and development.
5 Unbeatable Benefits of Blended Learning Strategies for Organizations
Taking advantage of blended learning allows you to provide a versatile and effective approach to organizational training, enabling you to stay competitive, foster employee growth, and adapt to evolving preferences and business needs. Here’s why blended learning will give you a leg up on other training approaches:
Customized Learning Paths: Blended learning provides a more tailored approach for your employees, allowing you to align what is being taught with specific job roles, ensuring employees receive the most relevant training.
Flexibility and Accessibility: Employees can access training materials and engage with coursework at their own convenience, accommodating varying schedules and remote work setups.
Enhanced Engagement: Incorporating various content formats with blended learning such as interactive online activities, simulations, and multimedia resources will boost engagement, resulting in higher retention rates and improved application of skills.
Collaborative Learning: Blended learning encourages collaborative activities, both online and in-person, fostering teamwork, communication, and shared learning experiences among employees.
Real-World Relevance: With access to real-world examples, case studies, and simulations, employees grasp the practical implications of their training, which translates to better on-the-job performance.
15 Blended Learning Strategies to Try in Your Organization
By combining different learning opportunities, you can create a buffet of effective and engaging training experiences that are tailored to your organization’s specific needs and goals. Here are some quick examples that showcase the versatility your team would enjoy by taking advantage of blended learning strategies:
1. Pre-Training Online Modules and In-Person Workshops
Before an in-person workshop, offer employees the opportunity to complete online modules that cover foundational concepts. This will make your in-person session more engaging with interactive discussions, case studies, and practical application of the concepts.
2. Virtual Instructor-Led Training (VILT)
Use a virtual workshops or webinar taught by an instructor online. This provides employees with real-time interaction and can be supplemented with online materials for pre-reading or post-session reinforcement.
3. Skill-Based Stations
Allow employees to rotate through different stations, each focusing on a specific skill for hands-on training. Some stations might involve online interactive simulations, while others could include in-person activities or demonstrations led by trainers.
4. Blended Onboarding Program
Try something different when onboarding new hires with a mix of online self-paced modules that cover company culture and policies. Your new hires could then attend an in-person orientation session to meet key team members and participate in group activities.
5. Extended Learning Paths
After an initial in-person training, give employees access to an online portal with additional resources. This allows them to continue learning and deepen their understanding at their own pace.
6. Microlearning and In-Person Application
Provide employees with bite-sized online lessons (microlearning) followed by in-person sessions where they practice and apply what they've learned through role-plays, simulations, or real-life scenarios.
7. Flipped Classroom for Soft Skills
Have your employees complete online modules on soft skills like communication and teamwork. Then you can offer in-person sessions then involve role-playing exercises, group discussions, and feedback to apply and refine these skills.
8. Peer-Led Discussions and Online Forums
Build a virtual space for employees to engage in online discussions or forums to explore course concepts, share experiences, and ask questions. This fosters collaboration and deeper understanding.
9. Virtual Labs with In-Person Practice
When offering a technical training, you might include virtual labs for online practice and in-person labs for more complex experiments or troubleshooting.
10. Scenario-Based Training
Have your team work through scenario-based modules online to help them make decisions and solve problems. Follow that up with an in-person sessions to discuss and analyze potential outcomes and consider alternative approaches.
11. Hybrid Certification Programs
You may consider offering certifications where employees complete online modules to learn theory and concepts, followed by in-person assessments to demonstrate practical skills.
12. Individual Coaching and Feedback
After completing online learning modules, have your team participate in one-on-one coaching sessions with trainers to discuss progress, address challenges, and set goals.
13. Peer Reviews and Online Assessments
Have your employees complete online assessments and allow their peers to provide feedback. Hold in-person sessions for follow-up discussions to review the assessments and enhance understanding.
14. Performance Support Tools
Give employees access to online job aids and resources after initial training sessions to reinforce learning and to support application on the job.
15. Interactive Simulations and Gamification
Online interactive simulations and gamified modules can help introduce complex concepts, followed by in-person sessions that delve deeper into application and analysis.
Blended Learning Drives Lasting Growth
The options are limitless! Blended learning strategies are central to innovation in organizational training and development. By combining traditional training methods with digital resources and versatility, these strategies empower leaders to cultivate a well-rounded, engaging, and adaptable workforce. As organizations navigate evolving landscapes, the adoption of blended learning strategies positions them to unlock the full potential of their employees and drive lasting growth.
Whether you're a business leader seeking to elevate your training initiatives or an HR professional aiming to foster skill development across your organization, embracing blended learning strategies can revolutionize your approach to training and development. By placing your employees at the center of their learning journey, you're paving the way for a more empowered, skilled, and motivated workforce that's ready to tackle the challenges of today's ever-changing business landscape.
…and be sure to share with us in the comments the one and only food you would eat for the rest of your life.