Masters in Culture

MIM's culture audit, inspired by Peter Drucker's principles, embodies the notion that 'culture eats strategy for breakfast.' It emphasises aligning organisational culture with strategic objectives to drive innovation, empower employees, and ensure long-term success.

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The Masters in Culture platform, developed by Masters in Minds, is a comprehensive tool for conducting organisational culture audits. This digital solution effectively evaluates, analyses, and enhances organisational culture. At its core, the platform integrates critical features such as engagement surveys and a mood monitor to gather feedback on employee satisfaction, collaboration levels, and overall morale.

 

Engagement surveys within the platform are strategically crafted to capture insights into various aspects of the workplace environment. They assess leadership effectiveness, communication transparency, career development oppo ... Read More

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Disengagement costs organisations 34% of a colleague's annual salary

The Masters in Culture platform by Masters in Minds represents a proactive strategy for cultivating a positive and thriving organisational culture. By leveraging technology to conduct thorough culture audits, monitor employee engagement, and promote transparency, the platform enables organisations to foster a workplace environment where employees feel motivated, supported, and aligned with the organisation's mission and values. This holistic approach enhances employee satisfaction and retention and contributes to overall business success and resilience in a competitive market landscape.

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Management & Development

April 29, 2024

‘Andragogy and our Learning Culture’

“Intellectual growth should commence at birth and cease only at death.”
Albert Einstein

Adult learning was studied by Malcolm Shepherd Knowles in the 1960’s and ‘The Modern Practice of Adult Education: Andragogy v’s Pedagogy’, released in 1970. The term ‘Andragogy’ (the science of adult learning) was initially coined by Alexander Kapp and then adopted by Knowles. He stated that there are 5 assumptions and 4 principles related to adult learning. Firstly, the assumptions…

• Self-Concept
As a person matures his/her self-concept moves from one of being a dependent personality toward one of being a self-directed human being.

• Adult Learner Experience
As a person matures, he/she accumulates a growing reservoir of experience that becomes an increasing resource for learning.

• Readiness to Learn
As a person matures his/her readiness to learn becomes oriented increasingly to the developmental tasks of his/her social roles.

• Orientation to Learning
As a person matures his/her time perspective changes from one of postponed application of knowledge to immediacy of application. As a result, his/her orientation toward learning shifts from one of subject-centredness to one of problem-centredness.

• Motivation to Learn
As a person matures the motivation to learn is internal (Knowles 1984).

Knowles’ 4 Principles of Andragogy

Knowles suggested 4 principles that are applied to adult learning:

 Adults need to be involved in the planning and evaluation of their instruction.
 Experience (including mistakes) provides the basis for the learning activities.
 Adults are most interested in learning subjects that have immediate relevance and impact on their job or personal life.
 Adult learning is problem-centred, rather than content-oriented.

The first involvement and insight I had on the world of adult learning in business was ‘training’ approximately 15 people into a call handling, Customer Service, 'Jack of all Trades' role in a Customer Contact Centre, or, a Call Centre as it was called way back then. The delegates were with me for 4 weeks, during which time they would learn products, process, call-handling skills, complaint handling, accounts, system use etc. My extensive learning to take on this role… I had been a pretty decent Advisor (if I say so myself) in the same Call Centre just a few weeks earlier. That was it.

Looking back, I really had little to no awareness of what task I was involved in. I saw this as ‘training’. My job title was ‘Trainer’ and I had the ability to clearly relay a message from a PowerPoint screen, that someone else had designed, to the delegates and then answer their questions. An important addition: my attitude was to enjoy the role and genuinely help people start their career with the company, however, the terms presenting, facilitating, coaching, and training were all merged into one; ‘training’.

Whether all, or any of the delegates actually learned, or how much they learned; who’s to say, as it was never measured. This lack of embedment is likely to have been a result of speed of the business, high attrition of employees, and busy managers, in addition to a lack of awareness on my part or that of the small training team. Conversely, the quality of training/education was also likely to be part cause of the same attrition level.

With hindsight, it’s likely my knowledge at that point says more about the norm of internal adult learning in organisations than it does about my limited awareness and skills at the time. However, I, and no doubt many like me were/are given this huge responsibility without fully understanding it. The impact of this on genuine learning is surely staggering. Is it any wonder that other people and departments can point the finger at the quality of learning? Let’s be honest; sometimes that pointing finger has been warranted.


“Teachers open the door, but you must enter by yourself”

Chinese Proverb

For those of us who work in a learning-related role for any organisation, we are working with adults, from millennials to sixty-somethings and we should consider how to cater for all. The question and challenge for me is not only about understanding how adults learn (I think we generally have a grasp on this) but even more pressing; how do we, in organisations, ensure that adults who are in the learning process are effectively managed through this process?

In a large number of organisations; I’ve seen employees who are ‘sent’ on a course in good faith by their Manager. It may be online, classroom, or virtual, as part of the company Learning & Development offering. Rarely is there an adequate set-up of this. Even less frequently is there a ‘real’ learning experience involved where the change of behaviour, process, or system knowledge is given appropriate embedding and support, and a recognised and measured outcome recorded.

Frequently, Learning & Development functions can be criticised and are effectively seen to be ‘ticking a box’. Less often is it accepted as vital to the success of the organisation, its culture, and its employees. Surely learning can’t be a ‘stand-alone’ function or simply positioned within a larger Organisational Development team? For me, learning has to be involved in and connected with every part of the business, share the same goals, measurable output, and work in tandem with those on the ‘shop floor’.

For Managers of people as well as other L&D professionals, let’s ensure that we meet the needs of the adult learner as well as the business. My own visualisation of the needs to ensure ‘real learning’ is simple (see below), but also important to remember that if you miss one step… you’re then leaving it to chance and on shaky ground. This diagram is also based on the belief that learning is the result of all of these steps; not just what happens in a classroom…

The considerations on each of these steps to effective learning may vary in each organisation and the reader may be able to add more to each one, however, as a Manager of people or L&D Professional, consider the foundational building requirements for effective learning in any organisation, and at any level, as noted below…

Receptive

 Have we, the organisation or the Manager, discussed this with the learner? Not just… ‘You’re going on a course’
 Do we know the employee understands why they’re included in learning?
 Do they know, and have they ‘bought into’ the benefits of learning?
 Are they ‘in the right place’ to learn? If not, how do we overcome that?

Understanding

 Is the learning content designed correctly and appropriately?
 Are we using the method of delivery with the highest impact, not just the cheapest or quickest?
 Is the facilitator capable?
 Does the content genuinely meet the learner needs and the needs of the organisation?
 Does the learner have the appropriate pre-requisites (knowledge, education, or experience) to understand the content?

Acceptance

 Is there resistance to learning? If so, it needs to be recognised and overcome.
 Does the culture of the business accept and embrace learning and change?
 Does the learner see and feel that they are learning and that it is worthwhile?
 Does the facilitator have the credibility and detailed knowledge for the learners to believe?

Retention

 When the learner leaves the session, will it stick? How do you know?
 Can they start using the information quickly?
 Does the content and/or facilitation have oomph?!
 Does their Manager/Coach have the knowledge, time, and desire to reinforce learning?

Application

 If you don’t use it, you lose it…provide the opportunity to use the learning quickly.
 Gain agreement up front where the learner will apply the learning to real-life scenarios.
 Doing something different can be scary – let’s recognise and face the output of that fear.
 It’s easy and tempting to fall back on previous habits (I’ve always done it this way) so confront the resistance!

Learning

 Do we expect and allow for mistakes to happen?
 Are there ‘check-ins’ where the learner can update us, and us them, on progress and challenges?
 Are we providing measurements of success?
 Do we challenge when it’s not working?

“The single biggest driver of business impact is the strength of an organisation’s learning culture”
Josh Berzin (Berzin by Deloitte)

When we consider how learning impacts on, fits with, drives, or becomes the culture of the business; it can go a number of different ways…

The method, process, and effectiveness of adult learning in our business (good or bad) can become the norm; the way things are done around here…the culture. Operational Managers and the shop floor will embrace learning if they see and feel a benefit from the role that they have. A successful learning function will be an integral component to the product quality of the business, will be a ‘must have’ in ongoing people development, as well as change; new products, pricing, structure etc.

If they don’t see or feel a personal benefit, in an ideal world; they will positively and constructively communicate this and work with the L&D Departments to an improved, more effective solution. In my experience, that doesn’t always happen as challenging the norm isn’t the norm! Confrontation will be avoided for a number of reasons and perceived thoughts… they won’t respond well to this, that’s not my job to worry about, I have enough to do looking after my own patch, or even… I can relate, or blame operational under-performance to the quality of training etc.

Operational areas and learning areas can gradually drift apart (if ‘departmental drift’ isn’t already a known business term, it certainly should become one) and result in departments working hard, but not together.

If we examine the culture of our organisation, where does learning fit? Is there a genuine learning culture? Not simply a culture of sending people on workshops or counting how much training we do, a genuine culture of learning and improvement.

My own thoughts at this point in time is that there could and probably should be a shift in positioning of L&D within organisations, not necessarily out of the traditional HR/OD department altogether, but certainly closer and more aligned to the Operation.

My question and challenge for all; do we know that learning in our organisation is effective and that we have a genuine culture of learning?

If you are starting a career in Learning & Development; this blog is a summary of the knowledge and awareness that I didn’t know I didn’t know. I hope it helps. For those more experienced Managers of People or L&D Professionals, hopefully this is a useful reminder or thought-provoking read.

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Management & Development

April 26, 2024

The State of Virtual Training 2020 results

When life gives you lemons – you have a choice

And in 2020 that choice has largely been a virtual one – including virtual trainingfacilitation, coaching, and mentoring.

Human connection is a human need

Despite COVID-19, people have found ways to connect. Nevertheless, the thirst for knowledge seems to know no bounds. From Joe Wicks to Yale’s ‘The Science of Wellbeing’ course receiving 500,000 new enrolments in a single weekend, people have found ways to connect and feed their appetite to learn – in spite of all that quarantine has thrown at them.

Inspire, empower, and engage for less

In fact, this innate need to learn shows up at the office too. Driven by client requests, MiM went into the virtual classroom in 2017 and we’ve never looked back. Virtual learning enables training experiences to reach more talent for less budget. Undoubtedly, moving 30+ years of traditional learning practice into a new interactive world is delivering better quality outcomes for our learners on a global scale. Unhindered by travel, budget, and time constraints we’ve moved to a 90/10 practical vs theory model. This balance enables us to include valuable assessments and tests to check understanding, and provide additional coaching to help embed what’s been learned. Enabling the many to be able to access opportunities that once were for the few.

We set high standards

We’re always seeking to deliver an uncompromised learning experience. Cindy Huggett is widely recognised as a pioneer in the field of virtual training. Her Annual State Of Virtual Training* survey is eagerly awaited by our sector as a way to check our homework. As a result, this year’s check-in sees MiM as ‘A’ star in our field. 

 

Virtual Training? We check all the boxes!

 

COVID EFFECT –  Firstly, 100% of MiM’s virtual learning offer is already online. By comparison, 90% of organisations in the survey only ‘want to’ offer more virtual learning experiences.

DURATION – Secondly, 90% of MiM’s virtual learning is 3 hours long (including breaks). MiM is able to deliver the detail and depth of learning our clients require because of our quality, interactive, and well-designed content while being supported by great production. This is vs. only 19% of respondents able to deliver a 2 hour+ virtual learning experience.

KEY CHALLENGES – Thirdly, respondents to the survey reported many challenges in what we would consider hygiene factors to delivering successful virtual learning experience.

Upfront time invested with the leadership team and key influencers ensures a program is set up for success. In addition, the ability to deliver in any platform without compromise is all part of creating the best possible learning or coaching experience for clients. This is a virtual circle of requirements – each thing weakened without the other.

PRODUCERS – A producer can help transform virtual training into trouble-free, fast-moving, interactive event that keep learners involved and the facilitator on track. MiM uses a producer 100% of the time. We’d argue that having a producer should be a ‘Go/No Go’ client requirement. Only 49% of respondents use a producer some, or all the time, and 23% reported never using a producer. 

Lemonade is where it’s at

The shift to operating in a largely online world is as much about serving human needs in new ways as it is in business. MiM’s Zones of Genius will unlock the lemonade mindset needed to bring about the business transformation you seek. Embedding effective change management in your culture and your people to deliver a more resilient, sustainable, and competitive future for all. And all delivered virtually by an A-star provider. GO MIM!

 

*Data Collected May-July 2020

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Business Saviness

April 26, 2024

Three Key Priorities for B2B Sales in 2021 and beyond

In our recent Q&A with our Sales Transformation Subject Matter Expertwe recognised how COVID19 has impacted B2B sales and traditional business models. Large-scale or small-step digital transformation journeys are going to be a top priority for many leaders as businesses reset. 

There will be many trendskey impacts, and opportunities facing businesses in 2021 and beyond. Below, we have outlined what we feel are the three key priorities for business leaders.  

1) The rise of XaaS business models is a big trend in Tech/Digital organisations.

“Anything as a service” (XaaS) is the general term for services related to cloud computing and remote access. From hardware and software, to data and analytics there is a trend that XaaS models are becoming the norm in b2b sales 

Firstly, preference for XaaS models isn’t a single path – it can take organisations years to make the transition from their traditional offerings to promote their XaaS models. Secondly, companies tend to drop into this digital transition part way through the process. However, companies that fail to embrace the uptake in XaaS face lagging behind competitors.  

2) Outcome-based selling is fast becoming the new normal 

A b2b sales team needs support to successfully shift to this more consultative way of selling. Recalibrating to this technique requires investment in your people. Businesses need to help their sales team embrace the change in mindset, behaviours, and beliefs needed to land this well. The reward? A team that will approach all of their customer engagements with a razor-sharp outcome-based focus. The customer is 100% the focus – particularly in an ever-growing digital age where a competitor choice is but a click away.

Outcome-based customer engagement should start with what the business outcomes are for the client. The products and services you sell should be tailored to meet that need – especially when XaaS is being used more and more. Diversifying your offering and equipping your sales team with the skills and tools needed to serve a more demanding digital-savvy client is crucial for a sustainable future. 

 

The goalpost might have moved but MiM can help your team still reach their goals!

 

 3) The transformation of Digital Sales 

The goalpost has moved a lot in terms of digital sales, and COVID-19 has had a huge part to play in that. The pandemic has forced businesses to step back and really examine their sales methodologies. Before 2020, companies would make sure they had a web presence, telephone sales, inside sales, f2f sales … and that worked great. But COVID-19 moved the goalposts and the pitch too! Companies have been forced to adopt new behaviours and mindsets when selling their XaaS solutions. 

The transformation of digital sales isn’t going to happen overnight. However, it is inevitable for many businesses if they want to keep a competitive edge. The winners will be those who equip their workforce with the right tools and skills needed to excel in the new normal.  

Let our client work tell the story of successful transformation. Read through some of our Client Outcomes and Client Testimonials to find out more. 

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Culture

April 26, 2024

Cultivating culture in organisations is leadership choice

Always nice to be recognised.

In ‘The Herald’, Laura Gordon writes why cultivating a culture in organisations is a leadership choice.

To read the article, click on the link below.

https://www.heraldscotland.com/business_hq/19755870.laura-gordon-cultivating-culture-organisations-leadership-choice/

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