Behaviourism to foster a productive work environment

Behaviourism

Behaviourism is a psychological concept developed by B. F. Skinner. Many people believe that such ideas can only be applied in places like schools and kindergartens and not as part of workplace training solutions. However, the story is entirely different.

Business owners have a lot to learn from behaviourism and related concepts. It can help them understand employee behaviours, which in turn increases their chances of success.

This article will describe behaviourism and show you how it can make your employees more productive.

What Is Behaviorism?

One of the most useful theories that can explain workplace behaviour is the reinforcement theory. Essentially, employees tend to keep reinforced behaviours and dispense with those that aren’t. The theory also states that past behaviours can be modified so that their impact on present behaviours is limited or neutralized.

When people are provided with positive reinforcement, they are more likely to repeat their actions. As a result, when you offer employees various incentives, you can expect their production to increase since they will keep doing the actions you rewarded them for.

Other forms of behaviour in your business can also influence your workplace organization. For instance, your employees’ leadership style and personality are reliable indicators of how they will perform. To that end, you can set up interviews to evaluate candidates and employees and determine if they will fit in with the company culture.

Moreover, organizational behaviour deals with a group and individual dynamics. It aims to understand behaviour in the workplace and develop ways to predict how employees will behave. This method can help you control actions detrimental to your company.

What Can Business Owners Take Away From Behaviorism?

By now, you may have already reached some conclusions about how you can take advantage of behaviourism to build a more productive workplace. Here’s how you can follow the abovementioned principles to improve your corporate training and create an ideal business environment:

Display Kind Behavior

Treating your employees the way you want to be treated will help develop a positive atmosphere and a loyal community appreciative of the leader’s consideration. If you behave kindly with your employees, they’re likely to return the favour and be more comfortable doing their daily jobs.

To achieve this goal, you can perform various acts of kindness. For example, you can give away a branded coffee mug to your employee. Even a simple ‘Thank You’ is a small but powerful way of showing your employees that you appreciate their efforts. This will drive them to remain productive, knowing that they are working in a rewarding environment.

Generate Motivation

To help your employees feel motivated, you can empower them to solve various problems and make workplace decisions. Another great idea is to provide your employees with the opportunity to take part in training activities or flexible work schedules. The motivation aspect applies to all departments, from sales development to call centres.

Include Rewards and Incentives

Positive reinforcement is arguably the easiest way to achieve higher production. It’s also the most desirable since it goes easy on every team member involved. As previously mentioned, the technique comes down to recognizing and rewarding employees for preferred behaviours, such as an outstanding presentation, report, or pitch deck.

The most effective way of imparting positive reinforcement is to do it periodically. You don’t want your employees to start expecting rewards for every single task performed. They should be included intermittently so that your team doesn’t get used to them.

Moreover, try to identify rewards that have intrinsic value for your employees. For example, a well-thought-out note, plum assignment, or simple praise in front of the whole team will make your employees feel appreciated and motivated to perform on the same level or even better.

Don’t forget to always include feedback in the workplace, whether it’s praise or constructive criticism. Providing feedback is beneficial to your employees since it allows them to see where they performed well and which areas need improvement. In doing so, your employees can grow and work on the skills necessary to contribute to your company’s growth.

Relating Employees’ Past Experiences in Interviews

To predict how prospective employees will act in certain situations, you should conduct interviews to see how they behaved in the past. You can discuss with a candidate if specific past problems could have been resolved differently. If the prospect is fit for the job, they should know how to relate their experience to your business.

Applying Organizational Behavior Management (OBM)

Many people refer to workplace behaviourism as organizational behaviour management. All of the methods previously mentioned are part of OBM and all of them have the same goal – making your employees more productive.

As we’ve already discussed, there are many ways to increase workplace efficiency. But the business environment has evolved significantly, which is why you should consider adding a technological element to your OBM. Here are a few examples:

Get Your Employees Moving Around

If you’re running a business that requires your team to sit for hours on end at their desks, you should find a way to increase their physical activity. This will keep them in good health and maintain workplace productivity. A great way to do this is to introduce an app that jingles for a couple of minutes every hour, signalling that it’s time to get out of their seats and move around.

Track Your Team’s Exercise and Eating

If your business entails frequent travel, it usually means less exercise and poor eating. To prevent this, you can get your employees apps that monitor their activity and diet while on a business trip. It will keep them healthy and more likely to get the job done.

Employ Gamification and Microlearning

Video games are a motivating addition to any business. Modules like leaderboards and badges make workplace learning fun and engage your employees. This creates an environment conducive to greater productivity and growth.

Furthermore, use microlearning activities to make your employee training more efficient and time-saving. It comes in various structures and includes engaging content.

Final Thoughts

Even though it may have sounded far-fetched at first, behaviourism has numerous implications in the workplace. If applied correctly, your employees will become more efficient.

To ensure you’re taking the right approach, contact the experts at Learnsure. We’ll show you how behaviourism can help any business and implement many other methods that will become an integral part of future workplace learningBook a demo and check out our services for yourself.

Solving Real-Life Problems with Experiential Learning

Experiential Learning

Today’s business world is replete with setbacks that can hinder a company’s growth. In many cases, they occur due to improper employee learning and development, which will only result in them using improper ways to solve problems. When employees have a hard time addressing obstacles in the workplace, there’s often a cap on company potential and customer satisfaction.

Traditional methods of training employees are ineffective nowadays. You’ve got to turn to modern training strategies if you have a mind to teach your employees how to take on future challenges.

In this regard, one of the most useful approaches that you can take is experiential learning. Find out what that is, how it works, and how you can use it as a growth driver.

What Is Experiential Learning?

Experiential learning bridges the gap between various learning concepts and the real world. In many ways, it’s the learning of new skills through activities (usually with a set of goals). Participants are placed in situations with real-life contexts that they have to navigate themselves. At the end of these activities, they can reflect on their experience and develop practical ideas.

Today, experiential learning is a crucial part of business training solutions. It creates a unique learning experience that sparks conversation and refines problem-solving skills.

Over the past decades, traditional training methods haven’t proven as fruitful as initially hoped for. Without direct application, it’s all too easy for employees to forget or misunderstand many concepts. This has led to more and more leaders implementing experiential learning strategies.

Another positive of experiential learning is that it lies in the middle of business learning initiatives. It’s a compromise between isolated training methods and simulations. Participants learn by performing their daily jobs, though not necessarily an exact replica of the workplace.

For the best results, experiential learning programs must have the following components:

  • Immersive experience and compelling metaphors that imitate real-world problems.
  • Engaging themes that disguise connections to the real-life workplace.
  • Fun factor to promote participation
  • Objective results
  • Cause and effect chain
  • Promoting the initiative for change
  • Result-based debriefing

It is the combination of these elements that leads to a promising learning experience. When participants are eager to engage, their confidence to take on their everyday challenges will increase.

How Does Experiential Learning Work?

Experiential learning works according to several principles. For starters, an engaging experience allows participants to take a break from their daily grind and have fun overcoming various challenges. They do not have to be made aware that they’re acquiring new skills, and this is where clever metaphors and themes can mask the primary purpose of the activities.

If you’re running on an accelerated timeline, you can quickly check out the results and help people learn from the entire experience. Finally, a detailed debrief links the activities to workplace situations. The learners get to see how they can apply their newly-acquired skills to various obstacles.

The result is behavior change caused by participants’ understanding of the consequences of applying their skills. Therefore, if they are to make mistakes, they will be more likely to take a different approach the next time. They’re going to reach conclusions about using various skills and their effects. For this reason, the retention rate is higher than with other training strategies, and skill development is more evident.

What Are the Benefits of Experiential Learning?

We’ve already mentioned a few ways that experiential learning can help your company. Here’s everything else that it can do for you:

Greater Capacity to Address New Situations

If your employees learn through a hands-on approach, they’ll be much more able to adapt to future situations. To illustrate this, let’s look at a study by the AACU (Association of American Colleges and Universities.) It had two student groups, one of which took an experiential learning program, whereas the second had direct instructions.

Although both groups achieved similar results in their final exam, the experiential learning group was better at practical assignments. Those participants outperformed the other group in drawing up a legislative policy. The ability to apply multiple aspects of their experiential learning gave them the edge over the other group.

In short, you can expect your employees to perform better if you inspire them to be innovative and use several skills to solve problems. With just instructions, you can expect subpar results and low customer satisfaction, making it so much easier for competitors to overtake you.

A Safe Environment

Failure can significantly harm your employees’ confidence. But if you set up an environment where failure doesn’t entail severe consequences, they can learn from their mistakes and improve on them. Simulations used in experiential learning sequences allow participants to fail safely. As a result, there’s no harm done to their confidence or any risk of poor performance in the workplace.

Accurate Skills Assessment

Compiling learning statistics can be challenging, even if it’s necessary. It gives you insights into how effective your learning methods are.

The same goes for experiential learning. An array of gamification and simulation programs can provide you with valuable feedback about the choices that your employees made in their learning activities. In turn, you can determine the skills that they capably demonstrated and those that will require more attention.

Superb ROI

Experiential learning takes place at your premises. This allows your employees to practice during their usual workflow. As a result, there’s less time spent at conferences, in boardrooms, or outside the office. Getting your employees to work on their skills on-site will almost invariably result in a higher ROI than sending them to learn someplace else.

Make a Wise Investment

Overall, experiential learning is one of the most practical ways of training your employees. It prepares them for future challenges by introducing them to real-life problems.

But if you don’t have all the necessary tools and knowledge, implementing experiential learning at your company is next to impossible – unless, of course, if you enlist the help of Learnsure. Our experts are well-versed in experiential learning and know just how to engage your employees. Using a technology-driven method, we can transform your learning environment for the betterment of your business operations.

We know all about the best workplace learning practices, from design thinking to microlearning. So, book your demo now and see our top-rated services first-hand!

Revolutionise Corporate Learning with Design Thinking.

Revolutionise Corporate Learning with Design Thinking.

Managing a company can get complicated. Some of the most challenging obstacles include skills development and managing business dynamics, stakeholders, and customer needs. Is it any wonder then that many businesses are resigned to an uncertain future for not being able to cope with the rapid tempo of change?

Luckily, there’s design thinking that you can adopt to control your business operations. Some of the most well-known companies, including Pepsi, Nike, and Google, have been practising this strategy, and there’s no reason to think that much smaller businesses can’t follow suit and enjoy many of the same benefits. It can help you with your company’s organization, communication, and goals

Take a look for yourself at the process of design thinking and how you can use it to run your business more efficiently.

What Is Design Thinking?

Design thinking aims to understand customer needs and embrace the use of creative thinking to resolve customer problems. In practice, design thinking can involve any number of human-centered innovation processes applicable to design activity, be it for a product, service, or the entire business.

The use of design thinking helps you address any concerns by putting customer needs first. The discipline centers on observing with empathy how users interact with their environment and it employs a direct approach to the development of solutions.

One of the critical components of these processes is visualizing concepts. In many cases, even vague concepts can spawn the brightest ideas, though it would require your team to think visually and your business to simplify a particular concept and make it tangible and much easier to understand.

Design thinking can comprise many stages, and one of the most common is a five-phase process:

  • Empathizing with customers
  • Defining your insights and customer needs and problems
  • Ideating to develop ideas for creative solutions
  • Prototyping to start developing solutions
  • Testing the solutions

Why Should Businesses Adopt Design Thinking?

The modern business landscape can be harsh and difficult to navigate. If companies can’t keep up, they won’t be able to adapt to the present state of affairs, let alone what the future holds.

Including design thinking in your corporate training can help you overcome these obstacles. Here are some of the reasons that make design thinking one of the best business training solutions:

It Helps You Make Plans

There are many distractions in today’s technology-driven world. Business leaders have to stay on top of changes and lead their company in the right direction. This is where design thinking can be immensely helpful.

It helps you visualize any aspect clearly and create a roadmap for the future. For instance, a visualized goal can give you an edge over your competition. In light of the constantly evolving business environment, having a well-thought-out objective at any moment in time can be crucial.

Team Innovation and Collaboration

A large part of design thinking concerns interactions, brainstorming, and eliciting contributions from all team members. This makes for an excellent method to obtain inputs and develop new ideas for products or services together. It promotes collaboration with the customer at its centre. In this fashion, you can use design thinking to align your employees with a common goal.

Problem Identification

Design thinking won’t build your products or services directly. What it does is offering solutions to real-life problems.

It requires posing relevant questions and identifying problems of paramount importance to your customers. For example, holding brainstorming sessions, as design thinking often calls for, can result in greater contribution from all and faster problem identification.

Creative Solutions

Many businesses fail to live up to their potential when all they do is making incremental improvements to their existing services and products. While the practice is perfectly acceptable and may well be good enough for survival, it can also leave your business vulnerable to outside disruptions.

Conversely, design thinking challenges the status quo by fostering creativity and enabling innovative ideas to surface. You can test those ideas later and determine if your customers would be happy with the end product. In doing so, the test results can provide you with a greater upside.

Learning at a Fast Pace

Design thinking assembles in a single room people from various departments for generating as many ideas as possible. This allows for quick testing of ideas in a prototype environment, after which you can pursue ideas that have traction and do away with the unpromising ones. The outcome is faster learning and problem-solving.

Clarity During Meetings

While full of useful insights, business meetings can also be a huge waste of time. You may discuss many things, but this doesn’t guarantee that your team will understand your company’s goals.

On the other hand, design thinking can lay out your expectations and get the team on the same page. With your employees in synergy, you can then develop a clear plan everyone will be able to follow easily.

How Do You Implement Design Thinking

Design thinking consists of a range of principles. Coming up is a summary of what you should do to encourage design thinking:

  • Find a way to add quality to your product or service by learning from seasoned practitioners.
  • Conduct experiments to boost your team’s creative confidence. The goal is to let them take risks in safe environments.
  • Start coaching and facilitating creativity, collaboration, and co-creation.
  • Focus on the customer experience.
  • Help your team develop thought-provoking insights, redefine problems, and produce ideas according to your research.
  • Encourage many different perspectives and check your assumptions.

In implementing this process, there are four crucial factors that will determine your success:

  • Leadership – It’s up to you as the leader to connect design thinking activities to strategic goals. Offer resources, direction, and commitment.
  • People – Encourage your team to take the initiative during changes through lighthouse projects. Develop a design thinking environment that shares best practices.
  • Process – Adapt the general design thinking process to suit your company’s goals.
  • Environment – Set up collaborative workspaces for your employees. Use them to innovate with partners and customers.

Make Your Business Thrive

As you can see, design thinking can help polish your business operations in many ways. Primarily, it enables you to define crucial problems and develop apt solutions to those problems, increasing your chances for success.

Best of all, you don’t have to take on this process on your own. Reach out to Learnsure and you’ll receive optimized learning solutions for your company. We can help your team embrace design thinking and be ready for future innovations.

Don’t settle for average performance. Choose your Learnsure solution and we’ll help your company blossom!

Innovative Learning for the digital age.

Innovative thinking for the digital age

One of the most important investments that any business owner can make is in the employees. This doesn’t only refer to the basics such as salaries and benefits. There are more significant details for making your employees feel appreciated and nurtured.

To be successful, a company needs to provide its employees with the knowledge and tools necessary to become skillful contributors. The staff must also be incentivized to use their skills properly.

Over the years, corporations have become aware of the importance of employee training and skill development to their success. More and more companies are starting to invest in Chief Learning Officers well-versed in training people to thrive in the corporate environment.

These executives are experts in innovative learning strategies, which should be the focal point of any business in this digital age. By adopting innovative learning, companies can enhance business operations and maximize the chances of success.

Such a holistic approach has proven effective for all organizations. Every company should foster employee development with consistent educational tactics, whether self-driven or structured. But how exactly can a business encourage the staff to be more innovative and creative?

In this article, we’ll provide you with three main tactics you can use to develop innovative learning: design thinking, behaviorism, and experiential learning.

Design Thinking

Design thinking is a process of identifying different solutions and strategies that may not be readily visible. In the main, design thinking attempts to understand customers, challenges assumptions, and redefines problems.

At the center of this process lies an interest to understand your target customers. It enables you to observe them and empathize with them.

The process can also help you question many problems, assumptions, and the implications of business decisions. As such, design thinking is an effective strategy for addressing vague or unknown issues. It allows you to redefine them in ways that are learner-centered. It encourages you to organize brainstorming sessions and take a direct testing approach.

Design Thinking Stages

You can find multiple implementations of design thinking, which can contain anywhere from three to seven stages. Nonetheless, the process is very similar in that the stages epitomize the same principles.

To give you a brief depiction of how design thinking works, we’ll mention what the process includes in its five-stage form:

  • Empathize – Learning about the audience for which you’re designing
  • Define – Developing personas based on demographics, goals, and objectives
  • Ideate – Brainstorming ideas while suspending judgment and encouraging creativity
  • Prototype – Creating sketches or building 3D models
  • Test – Learning what works and what doesn’t

Bear in mind that the sequence isn’t inviolable. You shouldn’t consider this process as a hierarchy of the five steps. Instead, it’s just an overview of the actions contributing to innovative thinking and business projects.

What’s the Value of Design Thinking to Businesses?

Nowadays, businesses face countless challenges, from budgetary concerns to technological adoption. It’s no secret that companies have to go through frequent project failures. According to an IEEE Spectrum report, some of the most common reasons a project fails include:

  • Stakeholder politics
  • Poor customer and developer communication
  • Ill-defined requirements

Design thinking can help you overcome these obstacles in several ways. For instance, if your business has trouble retaining customers, design thinking can direct your staff to reexamine their efforts and develop new retention ideas and techniques. They’re also encouraged to collaborate with people of different viewpoints. This can lead to strategic innovation and the solving of major problems.

In your meetings, make sure to elicit as much participation as possible. According to Lawton Ursrey, now Chief Product Officer at UserIQ, getting ideas from everyone is paramount. It’s worth prolonging your sessions to hear your team members’ suggestions on numerous issues.

Since design thinking promotes the testing of ideas, it can lead to valuable feedback in the early stages. This is conducive to early breakthroughs and more efficient business practices. When inputs are received early, you may be able to avoid spending money on worthless solutions.

Additionally, design thinking can be a way out of many stressful and challenging situations. It can remind your team members that solutions are available. All you need is to focus your efforts on finding them. This strategy can foster an encouraging environment in your business.

Behaviourism

Applying behavioural psychology in the workplace can improve your business. To explain, we’ll go through B. F. Skinner’s reinforcement theory.

Unlike others, reinforced behaviours tend to be adopted. The gist of the theory is that you can condition people’s actions. This has direct implications for workplace training and development.

The main thing is to coach your team properly and provide appropriate reinforcement. You’ll help them develop preferred forms of behavior and dissuade the detrimental. In this regard, positive reinforcement is much more preferable to negative.

Positive reinforcement rewards desirable behaviors. If you want to promote any approved behavior, you’ll want to make sure to recognize or reward the team member who exhibits that behavior.

Doing this periodically is the best way to go. There’s no reason to condition your staff to always expect a reward for a job well done.

Additionally, the rewards should have inherent value for the staff. It can be a unique congratulatory note, an outing, or a dinner at their favorite restaurant.

This means that you should find out about your team member’s preferences beforehand, which you can accomplish with a survey. If you use the same reward for all, it can be tantamount to not recognizing an employee altogether if they don’t care for the reward.

Experiential Learning

Now we get to the final part of effective corporate training, which is experiential learning. As the name implies, this is learning through one’s experience, such as workplace exercises.

Some of the most common examples include group activities that focus on problem-solving (could be company-specific), job rotation, adventure learning, and shadowing programs.

With today’s cutting-edge technology, you can even set up e-learning and virtual simulations. Along with other methods, you can organize direct practice in controlled environments. Your team members can apply what they’ve learned in real business situations.

According to a study conducted by ATD (Association for Talent Development) and the Institute for Corporate Productivity, top companies regularly invest in experiential learning initiatives. On top of that, high-performing companies organize experiential leadership activities created by in-house or outsourced instructional designers.

Best of all, this can be emulated at other companies, including yours. Make use of experiential learning if you want your company to blossom. Still not convinced?

Find out more about the intricacies of experiential learning:

Closely Resembles Reality

Experiential learning isn’t a straightforward activity, nor is it a 100% accurate depiction of real-life situations. The reason why it’s useful is that it falls right in the middle of these two extremes.

When you set up an experiential learning activity, participants have to solve real problems. These are problems designed to imitate workplace challenges and require participants to apply the skills that they use daily. This bridges the gap between practice and theory.

Unlike simulations, experiential learning exercises don’t replicate reality. Rather, they serve as themed scenarios and metaphors for the problems that workers face in their everyday work lives. They might not recognize the similarities at first, but they will soon understand the importance of the exercises and how to apply what’s learned.

Triggers Predictable Learning

Experiential learning isn’t accidental learning. The goal may be to teach the significance of planning or another practice, such as conducting a productive meeting. No matter the objective, the exercises instil a set of values in team members.

In other words, you don’t just initiate an experiential learning activity and wait to see the outcome. Instead, you design the exercise beforehand and incorporate all the principles you’d want your team members to adopt. And if these principles are relevant in the real world, your teams’ approach to the game will imitate what they need to succeed in the workplace.

Thanks to the predictable outcomes, you can be confident that your employees will come away with improved skills and knowledge.

Team Members Have to Be Involved

One of the most useful characteristics of experiential learning is its immersive nature. Staff members are engaged and encouraged to use a critical approach. This deep involvement allows them to retain new concepts much better. Furthermore, this evokes a greater desire to improve, both during learning and at work.

Innovation Is Key

If your team members are underperforming or not living up to their potential, your company needs change. Otherwise, you may fail to catch up to businesses that are already using modern workplace learning techniques.

The most important step is to adopt the three practices we mentioned above. They’ll help the entire staff focus on their work by practicing in a controlled environment and thinking about problems critically.

However, implementing these strategies can be challenging. Luckily, you can always turn to Learnsure for first-class workplace training solutions. We’ll share all our expertise to get your employees honing their skills and embracing how other high-performance businesses work.

Contact us now and don’t miss out on our innovative, sure-fire techniques.

A dig into the theory of social learning

Social theory of learning

The daily lives of humans are filled with innumerable experiences, the experience of good and bad; of success and failure; of happiness and sorrow. What one perceives of these experiences is subjective and forms diverse individual personalities. This is what the theory of social learning does, it draws an individual’s behaviour from their experiences. The environment and societal interactions tell a lot about an individual’s personality. Both of these factors have a vital role to decide, how a person would react to a situation?

It thus has a separate significance in the world of learning.

The conventional way of learning has a comparatively less retention rate than the modern developed ways. Social learning has a different impact and outcome in today’s scenario as with the developing and evolving nature humans tend to adapt things and traits which can be carried along easily because all their learning comes to test when they face actual problems in reality and when they are in a situation to decide upon. Social learning in today’s time is also about the ability to connect and stay together and have peace as the action is what the reaction is based upon. Observational learning is quite evident in these modern times where one has started to keenly observe and interpret things and situations they are surrounded with.

Bandura’s concept and the principle of social learning

The theory propounded by Bandura is about classical conditioning as well as operant conditioning wherein mediating process occurs between stimuli and responses. The theory given by Bandura further states that behaviour is learned from the environment through the process of observational learning. The key elements of his theory are:

  1. Attention – The extent to which we manifest behaviour that is further imitated.
  2. Retention – The ability to remember the behaviour noticed which is not always remembered which also prevents imitation.
  3. Reproduction – The ability to execute the behaviour that the model demonstrated. Ability plays a critical role in reproduction.
  4. Motivation – The reward and punishment that follow a behaviour that is considered by the observer.

This theory emphasizes the importance of observing and modelling the behaviour, attitudes and emotional reactions of others in our surrounding.

The changing world and the rapid growth of development have also resulted in the demand for socialization which also has a very strong impact on an individual’s behaviour wherein they are prepared for a social lifestyle.

Socialization has also enhanced the human outlook where they get to involve themselves, learn things to which they were never familiar with before and this aspect which is highly involved in this social learning is the cultural aspect and outlook.

Social learning is a concept where people learn by observing the behaviour of others, the outcomes of that behaviour are the end result be it good or bad as the good is being inculcated and the bad outcome is left behind.

At Learnsure, our learning programs use the principles of social learning to engage learners at a deeper level. Our Resurgent™ Performance Suite is designed to make social learning a tool to build confidence and improve the mental strength of the learner.