An Organisational & Cross-Cultural Psychologist, Andy Molinsky is a Professor at Brandeis University’s International Business School. Andy helps people develop the insights and courage necessary to act outside their personal and cultural comfort zones when doing important, but challenging, tasks in work and life.
His work has been featured in HBR, the Financial Times, the Boston Globe, NPR and Voice of America.
In this exclusive interview with People Matters, Andy reflects on how the past two years have impacted the L&D function, the biggest roadblock to learning and advises talent leaders on balancing business needs and talent development objectives
In your observation, how have the past two years impacted the mindset towards L&D?
I have seen companies pausing serious investments in L&D for budgetary reasons and also because of the confusion around hybrid and work-from-anywhere/home conversations + the covid and health challenges.
Growth opportunities, personal and professional, are a critical factor in influencing talent to stay with or exit an organisation. With the increasing focus on growth amid the great resignation, whom does the onus of learning lie on - the individual or the organization?
Learning can and should be a key competitive advantage for companies who invest in it and truly invest in their people.
In this way, learning can be an antidote to the ‘Great Resignation’.
What in your experience has been the biggest roadblock to learning? What are some ways to navigate such hurdles, especially in a virtual learning ecosystem?
My view is that teaching and training virtually is a critical, underrated skill - and one with a tremendous amount of variability in the population. I also believe it is a skill that can be learned and developed.
My view is that a key roadblock to learning virtually is the lack of attention towards developing (and selecting upon) this skill among people doing the training and development work.
Continuous development is something that employees look for in their employers and is becoming a strategic priority for leaders. Amid such a business climate, complicated by the pandemic and its after-effects, how can talent leaders better balance business needs and talent development objectives?
So much training and development is “one off” - as in, a single hour-long session or a learning management system with videos on demand. To me, real training, learning and development requires a much longer perspective and investment in deeper, ongoing learning - which can be virtual, in person, or hybrid in nature - but in all cases must be led by talented trainers and teachers with expertise in multiple modality learning.
What are your top three learning priorities for 2022?
Continue working on my own skill at virtual learning and education; develop materials, experiences, and exercises to help others to do the same; partner with organisations in these efforts.
Want to hear more of Andy’s thoughts? Listen to Andy talk about ‘Reaching out of your comfort zone to achieve your best’ only at People Matters L&D Conference APAC 2022.