Blending classroom and online training formats is inarguably the best way to train your people – you can make the training highly flexible, while retaining the much-needed human touch.
How can you formulate an effective blend of learning methodologies to train your people? What does it take to ensure your hybrid learning initiative is a big hit? Well, focus on the following five important aspects.
1. Explain the benefits of the blended learning approach to your people
Proper participation of your learners is the key to the success of the hybrid learning program, and this can be achieved by convincing the learners of the usefulness of blending learning methodologies. Tell them how the learning blend would reduce costs and provide them greater flexibility, while retaining the effectiveness of the instructor-led training (ILT) format. A well-reasoned explanation would go a long way in the training initiative, gaining acceptance of the learners, paving the way for its success.
2. Get guided by learning outcomes, not technologies
Achieving the desired learning outcomes must be at the core of your blended learning strategy. While designing a hybrid learning strategy, give precedence to meeting learning objectives over a specific format or technology. For instance, you need to design the right hybrid learning approach for your sales training program, based on its objective i.e. equipping sales reps with the ability to hold effective customer conversations. The objective can be met through a blend of classroom sessions and online sales simulations.
3. Take the learners’ preferences and work environment into consideration
You need to consider the work environment and learning preferences of the target audiences when you design a hybrid learning approach. It’s a good idea to conduct a survey to find out what the needs of your learners are and the learning methodologies they prefer. For instance, one of our clients in the consumer electronics domain found out that most of its service technicians wished to be a part of a mobile learning community.
4. Use a Learning Management System (LMS)
An LMS is a very useful tool to implement your blended learning strategy because it helps you perform the following.
- Schedule the ILT sessions
- Conduct pre-classroom learning activities
- Create a learning content repository
- Reinforce learning
- Facilitate learner collaboration
- Evaluate learners online
- Generate reports to analyze the learning
5. Document the hybrid learning strategy
It is very important to document the following aspects before you design the learning blend.
- Organizational drivers for blended learning
- Learning outcomes of the blended learning program and target learner profile
- Details of each hybrid learning component — its description, mode of delivery method, and the time required to complete it,
- Staff required for the blend and their responsibilities, and most importantly
- Budgetary requirements for implementing the blended learning program
Good documentation provides clarity on implementing the hybrid learning initiative, ensuring its seamless implementation.
A good learning blend helps you make the most out of the ILT and online learning formats. Focusing on these critical aspects helps you create the winning blend of learning formats.
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