The Huge Surprise in L&D…and What it Means

Walking into a room of young L&D professionals last week was an unusual setting for me to find myself in. Normally I’m the youngest in the room by a fair margin. It was even more of a surprise to see someone I’d been in the same form at school with! However this wasn’t the biggest surprise I had.

As my session with this group from various different organisations got started they opened up to share that they knew very little about neuroscience. They were wonderfully curious. L&D professionals are hungry for information they can take and use in their work on Monday. However as we progressed there was a sense of the enormity of both what the field of neuroscience offers and also the complexity of navigating it.

One of our challenges is that people are not questioning. They are not digging deep. An example of this is that most L&D professionals are not aware of the background of learning styles – apparently CIPD still teach / assess knowledge of these? This is a symptom. Are organizations clear on the cause?

The Biggest Surprise

L&D sounds like a fantastic area of an organization. From what I’m seeing though there is huge variation between how it sits and is valued and is linked up within the organization. In some places what is being done is all well planned out and totally supports business goals. In other places there is a real piecemeal approach. ‘What is shiny and captures attention gets brought in’ is a risk in L&D.

The biggest surprise I’ve come across in business so far is definitely the absence of congruence and joined up thinking within organizations. So many places identify with this disjointed reality of low congruence that is hampering results across the board.

What is The Opportunity?

There is definitely an opportunity to access game changing insights from neuroscience to reshape your organization. This frequently extends across the whole organization – and certainly includes HR and L&D functions. Leaders who understand how people work and the bottom line benefits of releasing more of the potential of their people are very open to tidying things up.

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