Posts Categorized: Informal Learning

When learning is the work …

What if your organization got rid of the Learning & Development function? What would the average manager or department head do? What would workers do? I’ve been thinking about this for a while. When work is learning, and learning is the work, training that is pushed from outside has less relevance. The L&D department is… Read more »

Informal learning, the 95% solution

Informal learning is not better than formal training; there is just a whole lot more of it. It’s 95% of workplace learning, according to the research behind this graphic, by Gary Wise.  Since the latter half of the 20th century, we have gone through a period where training departments have been directed to control organizational… Read more »

CSTD 2011

Here are my notes from the session this afternoon at CSTD 2011 in Toronto. If you need other links or information, just add a comment. I’m glad we had a chance to field test a variation of the improv icebreak activity of equilateral triangles. It seems to have got things going a bit. My slide… Read more »

Informal learning is a business imperative

In Part 2 of Social Learning doesn’t mean what you think it does, my colleague Jane Hart  uses a very helpful diagram created by a previous colleague of mine, Tom Gram: Tom Gram’s diagram [reproduced below] shows that “most work requires a combination of knowledge work and routine work. These characteristics of jobs and work… Read more »

Training departments will shrink

The Epic social learning debate for Summer 2011 states: “This house believes that as social learning grows, so the requirement for traditional training departments shrinks.” Let’s examine why they grew in the first place. Training on a massive scale was a requirement for preparing citizen soldiers for war and initial methods were tested during the… Read more »


Yes, I have called software vendors snake oil sellers. Last year I wrote, “Now social learning is being picked up by software vendors and marketers as the next solution-in-a-box, when it’s more of an approach and a cultural mind-set.” In 2005, social learning online was a fringe activity that we had to test using open source… Read more »

Learning and working effectively

An effective networked workplace can be viewed as a three-sided framework, with a leadership/management strategy (radical & wirearchical) that supports collaborative work enabled by social learning. All three are necessary. If there is any degree of complexity in the work, collaboration needs to be supported by a flexible management framework that encourages social learning. This… Read more »