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Managing a virtual workforce can be difficult under normal circumstances and with a global crisis impacting the entire world right now, things are definitely not normal. Most of us have never experienced a disruption in our lives like this before.  As we all adapt to so many changes, I want to highlight an exciting aspect of our collective experience: when disruptive change occurs, it creates new opportunities by changing the way we think, feel, behave, and learn. 

Disruption occurs when people target opportunities that have been overlooked and offer new innovative solutions and breakthrough solutions.  One of these opportunities is to consider online learning courses to help your team acquire new skills while sharing and interacting with others virtually.

Instructor-led online training provides an opportunity to build new critical skills in these current times of change and transformation. Participants benefit by interacting with others through social learning and collaboration.   

Attending online training while being isolated will help to address skill gaps to build future skills that will be needed when the pandemic ends.  Employers need to identify the impact that isolation is having on their employees. Providing training opportunities for continued development will re-engage, motivate, and help them focus on self-development goals and future career success versus fear of the unknown and job loss. 

The best learning occurs in environments where learners feel safe and respected and the training is relevant.  Creating a safe learning environment is important. When offering online training to employees, communicate the benefit and value of online learning.  Tell them how you will support them and why the organization is providing this opportunity. Show you care about them and their continued success with the organization.  

When selecting online learning, identify the platform used, requirements of the program, the learning requirements and required hours to complete assignments.  If participants miss a class – how do they make it up? Is one on one coaching offered? Is there a learning management system used to administer attendance, training materials, and assignments?  Are exams or quizzes given before and/or after the training to determine learner proficiency? Are there certificates or badges awarded after the program has ended?

Online learning is a great option for helping employees to stay engaged, motivated, and skilled so they are better prepared to deal with unforeseen changes, like those that are currently impacting our world. 

 

IOD offers online certification programs in the field of OD and professional development workshops for online learning.  If you are in the field of OD, HR, L&D, Leadership, Consulting, Project Management, or Behavioral Science, you may be interested in obtaining a certification in the field of Organization Development.  Check out our website at www.instituteod.com

Nancy Zentis, Ph.D. is the CEO and founder of Institute of OD.  She may be reached at Nancy.zentis@instituteod.com.