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Skills for 21st Century Learning and Development Professionals – connected dots

We all think that we know what we need. We all want to develop, we all want to change, be better, be faster, be smart and more effective but going into details which skills do we need as Learning and Development professionals to achieve it. The workshop I’ve attended recently gave me totally new perspective on this.

During the Online Educa conference in Berlin I’ve participated in an amazing workshop led by Donald Taylor It was arranged as creative cafe where multicultural group of 35+ L&D professionals were discussing what are the skills that we need to be successful in 2014.

The OEB13 programme was promoting this workshop this way:

What new skills are needed for the future L&D professional? What are the old habits we need to let go and what do we need to enhance? Join this interactive Learning Café to build skills and confidence for the future.

What skills does L&D need to succeed in the 21st Century?

It was the most important question for me. Being a part of training design and development organization and being responsible for the ID and development work I came to the point where particular skills are very important as they directly impact what and how we do.

As Donald has stated in his blog post:

This is a combination of skills and values, with some detailed technical skills and some very high-level skills. There was considerable consensus over this set of skills, even though the discussion was harder and more intense when I asked the tables – after initially brain storming all skills – to choose the three they thought most important.

The list is very precise but I think it’s not highlighting all of the connections and dependencies between the skills.

Connecting the dots

What I usually do when I do not get the big picture of some complex idea I try to draw it on a big paper. I draw it once and wait for the new context to appear. If it’s not showing in my head I try to draw it once again and again. This time I got there after fifth approach and here’s what I got:

Learning and development skills in 21 st century

Very simple chart organizing all of the skills but at the same time giving few new perspectives and adding value to the collection. When we just quickly look at the map we see that:

We need to design and develop learning that is: 

  • lifelong
  • mobile
  • global
  • collective
  • personalized
  • adaptive
  • localized
  • delivered through collective intelligence

We need to:

  • manage skills and change
  • be adaptive because of changing technologies and methods
  • learn and embrace method and technologies influencing change

And what is the most important and the whole Online Educa and this particular workshop proves:

We need to change through collective intelligence. That is why it is so important to facilitate this.

PS. Thank you all for the workshop and putting this all together.

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