Engage Employees through Learning at Work

The majority of the employed population work in an industry which supports their skill set. If you have a degree in a certain subject you are likely to want to work in a similar trade. Throughout our lives we are learning continuously, therefore our skills should be exploited and built upon in the roles that we choose.

Continuous development helps motivate employees, keeps them interested in the company and increases employee retention. Within a company a budget set aside for employee training and development is a key employee benefit for improving moral and engagement.

The Fordism approach to business was mass production and consumption. This included standardisation, where each employee is skill to carry out one task within the process of making a car. The employee becomes specialised in that one area of making the car – however ford employees skills were never developed further – for example they could never build a complete car. http://www.britannica.com/topic/Fordism

Karl Marx argued that this led to an unskilled, demotivated workforce which in turn left employees feeling alienated. Therefore, arguing, that employees thrive if you teach and develop their skills. http://www.britannica.com/biography/Karl-Marx

Companies can help to engage with their employees by introducing a training programme or encouraging employees to further their education and take chartered exams or even just sharing useful work related books and articles with the team.

Modern employers have been using Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs theory and applying that to employee engagement and motivation.

Employee Engagement Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs
Highly Engaged Self-Actualisation
Engaged Importance
Almost Engaged Belonging
Not Engaged Security
Disengaged Survival


 There are many benefits for business and employers who make a small change and introduce learning within the workplace. As well as motivating, encouraging and inspiring employees it also allows employers the opportunity to recognise internal talent and promote employees through the organisational hierarchy. This can be cost effective with regards to the recruitment process and can increase production by goal setting within the team allowing employees to work towards a target or goal.

  • Weekly lunch and learns – where once a week or month the team gets together and one person presents a relevant topic.
  • Training budget – invest in your employees for classes or certificates and exams.
  • Setting specific goals – within a personal development programme set learning objectives so employees achieve
  • Distribute books to read – industry specific
  • Acknowledge results – ensure hard work and achievement is recognised within the team

The CEO of Microsoft Satya Nadella, recently spoke about his passion for contagious improvement. ‘What defines me – I’m a lifelong learner. I get energised when I see people achieve standards. That’s the thing that gets me going’.

Organisations are encouraged to take part in a ‘learning week’ within their company. This is to help change attitudes towards learnings and work, to increase awareness, engage with employees, inform businesses on learning and developing strategies. To help discover opportunity within the business and recognise talent, whilst understand and valuing the importance of learning by highlighting business agendas and bridging the gap between information held by directors and their employees. http://www.campaign-for-learning.org.uk/cfl/LearningatWorkWeek/essential_facts.asp

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