eLearning and Corporate Training, Blended Learning

How to Promote Creativity in Your L&D Team

by Debbie Williams

Unposed group of creative business people in an open concept office brainstorming their next project.-3

An L&D team is critical to the overall success of a business. This is because, according to the McKinsey Institute,1 these teams are responsible for: 

  • Attracting and retaining talent
  • Developing employees’ capabilities
  • Creating a values-based culture
  • Building an employer brand 
  • Motivating and engaging employees

One of the primary ways learning and development professionals achieve some of these objectives is by implementing a learning experience platform that promotes better staff performance. Company leaders can set their L&D team up for success, which will in turn increase the success of the organization, by fostering creativity in team members.

Why Your L&D Team Must Be Creative

Creativity is a necessary quality for learning and development professionals to possess. A contributor to TrainingJournal.com explained why. Speaking of creativity’s importance to L&D specialists, the contributor stated, 

“It’s everywhere in our line of work: when we are influencing stakeholders or convincing clients that their suggested solution won’t have the desired impact; when we want to make sure we’re doing a proper (performance) needs assessment before starting a project; to find the resources we need for our projects; how we are able to communicate to the target audience; how we get buy-in from managers. You name it, creativity is how we deal with everyday situations.”2 

By intentionally inspiring creativity in your L&D team, you may see an improvement in the quality of your company’s online employee training program, as well as in the areas mentioned above.

Foster Creativity in Your L&D Staff With These Ideas

It isn’t always easy to be creative, especially for learning and development professionals, who are constantly having to come up with creative solutions to problems. Individuals in roles like these often find that their “creativity muscles” get tired. Here are a few ways to help L&D team members tap into their creativity, even when they are feeling dry: 

1. Create a Safe Space for Brainstorming

Brainstorming is a free, effective, and easy way to develop creativity. “Brainstorming is a great method to promote creative thinking about a business need,” stated KnowledgeHut.com.3 If you want L&D employees to put their whole heart into brainstorming, it is vital that you create a safe space in which they can pitch their ideas. To do this, let them know their ideas will not be judged or made fun of. Consider providing your L&D team with training in constructive criticism skills and other best practices for brainstorming.

Related blog: 3 Ways to Increase the Effectiveness of Online Training Courses with an LMS

2. Have L&D Team Members Participate in Marketing Training

Cross-departmental training can result in better team performance and a collaborative, innovative company culture, per ASAE.4 To get these benefits while sparking creativity in your L&D team, train them using your marketing team’s courses. This will help L&D staff think like marketers and create training that "sells" and promotes buy-in from learners. 

“Leading marketers know how to use advertisements to incite our desire and curiosity toward their services or products, eventually enticing us to make the purchase,” according to HumanResourcesOnline.net. “Successful advertisers are able to change behaviour better than almost anyone. And isn’t that what we are trying to do as L&D enthusiasts - to encourage changing behaviours, to bridge skill gaps in the effort of building capability of our people, and contributing to business objectives?”5

By including marketing training in your L&D team members’ online learning paths, you can help them think creatively and design more compelling training that closes knowledge gaps and develops workers.

3. Hire Diverse Talent

If you want to stir up creativity in your L&D team, hire diverse team members. Diversity fosters creativity in a way nothing else can because it helps people see things from different perspectives and adopt new ways of thinking. "Employees with too many similarities in education and experience can often come up with ideas that start to sound repetitive after a while," explained WeWork.6 A diverse L&D team safeguards against bland ideas that result in boring, ineffective training.

Related Reading: What is a Learning Experience Platform? 

Are Your Learning and Development Professionals Creative Enough?

A quick way to determine whether or not your L&D team is sufficiently creative is to take a look at your company’s employee training programs. Are they getting great results? Are employees engaging with them on a deep level? Are they creatively designed? If not, make it a point to get team members brainstorming regularly, add marketing courses to the learning and development training path, and focus on hiring diverse L&D talent. 

Interested in learning more about how to make your L&D team more efficient? Read our blog “3 LMS Features That Help Small L&D Teams Train Large Learner Bases” or contact TOPYX to request a personalized LMS demo today.

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References:
[1] https://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/organization/our-insights/the-essential-components-of-a-successful-l-and-d-strategy
[2] https://www.trainingjournal.com/articles/opinion/creativity-ld-capability 
[3] https://www.knowledgehut.com/blog/project-management/brainstorming-promoting-creative-thinking-among-teams 
[4] https://www.asaecenter.org/association-careerhq/career/articles/talent-management/4-benefits-of-cross-departmental-training 
[5] https://www.humanresourcesonline.net/creative-lnd-mix/ 
[6] https://www.wework.com/ideas/foster-creative-culture 

Debbie Williams

Debbie Williams

Director, Marketing