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Informal Learning in Organizations

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Informal Learning in Organizations

How to Create a Continuous Learning Culture

Kogan Page,

15 min read
10 take-aways
Audio & text

What's inside?

Most development within organizations occurs through informal learning.


Editorial Rating

8

Qualities

  • Applicable

Recommendation

Seasoned learning and development (L&D) professional Robin Hoyle explains why organizations need to manage informal learning and how they can do it well. Planning and management apply to purposeful undertakings – for example, classroom instruction – but informal learning is ad hoc and unrestrained. The solution lies working with the inherent contradiction between unscripted improvisational learning and the degree of structure a company needs to organize its employees and to track what they know and what they’re learning. getAbstract recommends Hoyle’s guidance and his program to L&D professionals.

Summary

Most Learning Is Informal, Not Formal

Learning is not restricted to classrooms or high-tech e-learning environments using sophisticated online modules. Informal learning takes place anywhere, among all employees, in every format, at any step of a process and all the time.

Some people regard classroom instruction as the most traditional learning form. But throughout history, informal learning has been the primary way that people educate themselves. Humans learn mostly through discovery, not from being taught. Beneficial and efficient informal learning requires planning, organization, management and support. Learning and development (L&D) professionals and their organizations can enable informal learning by providing a focus for it, motivating learners, creating ambitious standards, responding positively to learners’ aspirations, and consulting and deliberating on how long learning should take and how to pursue it.

Informal Learning

Informal learning is the process of “acquiring new or modifying existing knowledge, behaviors, skills, values or preferences.” Informal learning resists easy definition, but to understand it consider this five-stage, learning...

About the Author

Robin Hoyle is a training and development professional. His company, Learnworks, creates blended learning programs for global organizations.


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    M. d. 5 years ago
    Read this one when you are interested in the 70:20:10 rule. Good ideas on where an organization could start with informal training, which is still underdeveloped - just go on your intranet and try to learn about a topic.