As we reflect on the past year it is clear that despite the clear economic revival in the US and UK, companies are, if anything, more focused than ever on reducing L&D costs and getting a better return on their investment. This is the right thing and for the most part this can only be positive. Success is beginning to be measured more on impact than on feedback.

One approach to learning that we have been espousing has been the flipped classroom: pulling the knowledge building and content based learning out of valuable face to face time and putting this online; following up with simulation to ensure that this learning is truly embedded before debriefing the experience face to face and then applying the learning to real life situations with the help of facilitator/coaches. As part of this we have been taking many of our simulations and making them multi-player or multi-role so that teams can work together virtually, both synchronously and asynchronously, in an engaged, collaborative way.

Our CLO Forum on Democratising Learning in March focused on another theme as we recover from the recession: how to get more from the 80-90% traditionally ignored by leadership development. We have been starting to work with clients to see how they can improve human performance across the organisation, when previously such interventions were focused on an elite few.

Looking forward we feel that “Big Data” is the buzz word, even in the world of HR and Learning. There is massive potential to collect, analyse and leverage data captured through technology based solutions, such as simulations, to improve recruitment, assessment and developmental decisions. We shall be using some of our R&D resources to understand and exploit this better.

Happy New Year to all our clients, friends and partners.