Ep3 How to use micro-learning to spur leader behavior change

Laura:               What we had, we leveraged as the mentors, their boss coaches so that they can utilize instant assessment tools to look at those behaviors and skills and see if there’s been behavioral change.

Terry:               Hi there and welcome to another episode of Leadership Activation and today my guest is Laura. She is the CEO and the founder of accelerated leadership. I just can’t think of a better person better firm to focus on and talking about leadership activation. Hey Laura, welcome to the program.

Laura:               Thank you Terry. Glad to be here this morning.

Terry:               Hey take a just a minute and tell us a little bit about Alg.

Laura:               Oh, I would love to. We started the firm 11 years ago after I’d spent 18 years in corporate America heading up leadership development for a large, a big Pharma company and just have so much passion around leadership development, wanting to go out and serve other clients and companies as well. So 11 years ago we went out on her own. I have a partner located in Hershey, PA, Susan Hon, and our passions around moving away from event training and really serving our clients so that their is long-term committed sustainable leadership development.

Laura:               we do predominantly serve Pharma, healthcare biologics. Science clients, uh, but we’ve also had the opportunity to work across different industries. Coca Cola, Discovery, SAP. Leadership is leadership, so we, we go in and try to meet our clients where they are and what their needs are to the development of their leaders.

Terry:               That’s awesome. Great Story. And it’s. No, it’s fantastic work. I’ve actually seen some of the impact of your work and all I can say is Kudos. Well done. Great. Very inspiring. Laura, I know that you have built a lot of programs for a lot of clients, but I’m just curious in terms of if you were to pull back and just take a look at the whole, had there been some guiding principles that you used to into every program?

Laura:               We sure do. We’re very intentional with our instructional design work and we leaned toward scaffolding learning where we’re building skills on top of skills, you know, from their previous skilled in a very structured and supportive. We also build it a lot of facilitated discussions so that we’re honoring the experience of these leaders that have been out there leading a long time and we want to honor different adult learning preferences so we build that in as well. I said intentional. We are mindful of that cognitive info overload and designing to avoid, you know, not trying to push too much information now at one time that we have a balanced approach, cognitive and activities, our design draws on various learning preferences, leveraging types of information. Um, so that we’re ensuring that the learning big and that we also create a safe learning environment so people can take risk and they feel that they can learn throughout the day and practices.

Terry:               Very awesome. Very good. Are there any particular initiatives or program that you’re, that you see happening maybe with with your clients, that is having really significant impact right now that you could talk about?

Laura:               Yeah, I think there’s two areas where we have been asked to come in and serve and support our clients building bench strength for their future leaders. So we spent a lot of time with an emerging leaders process and methodology that again goes beyond the 10 percent of them classroom learning, but truly focuses on that 70 percent of learning where people need to apply and practice skills. Well we also have pulled in the 20 percent of learning with mentoring and coaching, so emerging leaders through a very thorough methodology of classroom micro learning where they’re able to. Right, okay, fly, and then there’s a feedback loop to their peer mentor or even we’ve used experienced leaders as their mentor to provide them feedback on the practice of their skills and how they’re doing. And we’ve gotten very strategic in a process and an approach to really leverage and play to that 70, 2010, that’s one track. And then the other development with leaders that we’ve been pushed to move towards because there’s very little that we’re seeing are the emerging director.

Laura:               So that leader of leaders, you know, how do you prepare at next level leadership that we’ve built up. Okay. Similar to the emerging leaders program where there’s blended methodology and modalities, but we’re giving them shadowing experience, capstone experiences where they’re solving real business issues and applying their business acumens skills, classroom experience, and then again, micro learning and practicing along the way and then getting feedback from a mentor. So emerging directors that are emerging leaders, that’s been an area of this past year where we’ve gotten a lot of attention because people and clients that have the need to groom their own talent.

Terry:               Sounds like an amazing amount of seamless integration of strategies and thoughts. So, um, I’m just curious because we get, we get this question a lot. What do you believe to be some of the most important metrics when evaluating leadership success?

Laura:               Yeah. I’ve been in learning and development for over 20 years and that’s always been the. Not that I’ve tried to get past level one.

Laura:               Yes. Yeah.

Laura:               And how do you get to level three where there’s true behavioral change and ultimately business impact? So we partner with our clients and look at what’s a palatable to their culture, but we get very strategic on a metric strategy to whether that’s, you know, let’s do a multi rater assessment prior to the leader coming through our program or even structuring a competency behavioral interview baseline and then we can do it, have the same activity at the end of the program. So we get a measurement. We’ve also been very successful with on going assessment around the case method where we’re interviewing and saying, you know, what exactly has happened to the business as a result of this leader experiencing and developing these skills. Also leverage a tool. It’s a the mobile server guide per se and what we we leveraged as the mentors there, awesome coaches so that they can utilize instant assessment tools, look at those behaviors and skills and see if there’s been behavioral change, you know, as they’re applying when they’re working day to day. And then, so we’re, we’re baselining, we do ongoing feedback and then we look at post assessment two, whether again that’s a multi rater assessment and executive panel rating assessment. We could even look at their capabilities, growth or performance ratings as they move into new positions. Trying to get arm around, very clear strategy even before deployment and execution of the program so that people know that we are going to move to that level three. Ultimately level four metrics capability for their leaders.

Terry:               Fantastic. I guess if there’s any one thing that we hear from around the world of learning is how important more so now than ever before to get that kind of behavior change. That’s driving impact, so that’s right. Yeah. Well done. How do you know this is the time of year when there are so many people who are putting together their 2019 initiatives in light of the all the work that you’ve done, I wonder, do you have any advice for somebody who’s putting that plan together now? Kinda like hey, above all else, don’t forget this.

Laura:               Yeah. I’ll go back to that 70/20/10 principle because I still like. We put so much energy and focus on the 10 percent of learning with the classroom and my advice would be to transition and obviously there’s always a place for that and we will. We all get a lot out of it, classroom live interaction and application, but to focus on what the leaders are doing back on the job and how can you activate those skills and give them learning along the way so that they’re able to apply what they’ve learned. So I would just step back. I had a leadership development for years and just stepping back and being very intentional with the way that the entire flow and the those are pulled through over time. I.E. There. What are we doing pre to engage these leaders and to make it real for them so that contents learning prior to a classroom experience and then afterwards you have whether it’s podcasts or webinars or micro learning or a capstone, real world business action learning assignments. Whatever that method is that it’s strategically planned out so that you could ensure the behavioral change. And I know sometimes we don’t take the time to look at all the modalities and the ways that people can learn, but push and I’m continuing to push our team to do this. To be Innovative, and experiential, and looking at 2019, how can we meet the demands of modern learning today so that we meet the needs, of our learners over time.

Terry:               I think that is excellent advice that I think our audience is gonna love and appreciate. Hey, if somebody wanted to reach you and find out more about your work, uh, where would they go?

Laura:               Oh, I would, I would love for anyone to reach out that would love to have a conversation. A 770.329.5524 is my direct line. Or you can go directly on our website, www alg leaders.com. And you can check out some of our solutions for our clients. We’ve worked with them.

Terry:               Perfect. Hey Laura, thank you so much for being on the program today. I think there there, there are people who are going to get an awful lot out of the little bit of time that we shared together, so thank you everybody else. Have a great, wonderful day. We’ll see you next time.

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