There are many benefits to being a life-long learner. As the world continues to discover innovations and new information, not staying updated with modern skills, even after college graduation, can leave employees behind. Keeping yourself up-to-date with new skills and knowledge on a regular basis will make you a more valuable employee and contributor in the workplace. A recent survey highlights how 54% of employees agree that it is crucial for them to get the proper training and gain new skills throughout their career, further saying that it helps them better adapt to changes in the workplace.
What is Continuous Learning?
Continuous learning is a concept in professional development where your employees are given the opportunity to learn simultaneously while they work. It is ensuring that your team develops the habit of acquiring skills, knowledge, and abilities to help them become better at their jobs.
Continuous learning is most effective when the individual has a desire to learn and grow. While you can launch initiatives that can encourage continuous learning, it is most effective when an employee is enthusiastic and ready to absorb new information. Whether it’s encouraging employees to take upskilling opportunities or introducing bi-annual 360 reviews, nurturing a continuous learning environment can better help your employees succeed.
Upskilling and education opportunities also count as continuous learning. However, lack of accessibility and a demanding workload can easily discourage many of today’s workers from pursuing such opportunities. Thankfully, many modern universities now use innovative tools and technologies to ramp up their distance learning capabilities — allowing full-time employees to take online degrees.
This is especially useful for constantly changing industries such as business and accounting, which require professionals to stay constantly updated with industry trends and learn modern skills. For instance, those who want to switch careers and take advantage of the job opportunities in a degree heavy field like accounting can now do so while working. An online accounting degree is 100% done remotely and will prepare students for their certified public accountant exam in the same way as a regular course would. In these programs, professionals will learn key accounting skills like financial reporting, managerial accounting, ethics, auditing and more. Indeed, it is a good way to remain competitive in any industry without having to put one’s current career on hold for a full-time physical education.
Aside from academics, personal development of soft skills also counts as continuous learning. The ability to effectively communicate, maintain emotional intelligence, think critically, and hone one’s creativity all help an employee stand out at work. Other than helping teams achieve their goals, employees who are able to cultivate their soft skills have a better chance at nurturing professional relationships that can benefit their careers down the line.
How Can Continuous Learning Benefit Your Organization?
Below, we enumerate the different ways your organization can benefit from continuous learning.
It Prepares Your Employees for Senior Positions
As you encourage your employees to set achievable learning goals and share them with the team, don’t be surprised to hear if some employees start to think about taking on a more senior role in your organization. The great thing about continuous learning is that it allows your employees to constantly improve their knowledge and skill set, subsequently preparing them for a senior position in your organization.
And even if they don’t desire to change positions, as long as your employees help drive success in your organization, there will be more opportunities for them to step up and use what they’ve learned.
It Improves Employee Retention
Employee retention has become a major challenge for many business leaders and human resource managers today. Today’s corporate landscape is increasingly competitive, and many employers find themselves in situations where prized employees have been wooed away by other organizations. One way to improve employee retention in your organization is by building a culture of continuous learning. By having a good learning and training program from the get-go, your employees are more likely to achieve personal success. This, then, encourages them to help your organization reach its goals. Loyalty is created when you help an employee feel satisfied with their career — and continuous learning initiatives can certainly assist with helping your team members fulfill their potential.
All in all, continuous learning can help your organization and individual employees in reaching new heights and being successful in the workplace. If you’re interested in other meaningful insights, like how soft skills training is in high-demand these days, be sure to check out our blog and Social Intelligence training programs.
Written by Ashley Aldrin, Guest Blogger and mental health advocate who is passionate about balancing wellness and productivity.