The Superpower of the Decade – Learning & Development

Learning and Development has been hailed as the Superpower of the Decade which has resulted in the immense growth in the number of people with the job title of Chief Learning Officer (CLO) across organisations of all sizes.

What is Learning and Development?

Learning and Development (L&D) falls under Human Resources and includes everything a business does to encourage professional development amongst its employees. This should be aligned with individual and organisational ambitions and goals. It is about creating the right culture and environment for people to grow.

Why is L&D Important?

An effective L&D strategy allows employees to learn new skills that they will bring to work with them every day. Employee engagement will improve which sees a more motivated and content workforce. Increased retention rates means that these great employees will stay at a business for longer. Essentially, a good L&D strategy results in employees working more effectively and sticking around for longer. Current trends suggest that staff are becoming more satisfied with professional development incentives than financial incentives, as they’ll be better off for it personally and professionally in the long run. The cost of losing top talent will only become larger if other organisations invest in L&D whilst others continue to not acknowledge it as an important factor in staff retention.

The Role of CLOs

As more businesses recognise the importance of and the desire for a good learning and development strategy, the number of CLOs has risen. Their job is to drive L&D within an organisation to get the best out of current employees and attract other top talent. As a relatively new job title within business, the role of a CLO is still evolving, just as businesses themselves. In 2020, a Harvard Business Review article introduced the idea of a ‘transformer CLO’ whose role challenges employees’ capabilities and creates a growth mindset amongst staff. We expect this role to continue to flex and bend with changes in the business world but keep its core values of getting the best from employees.

What we at the Trusted Executive see here is a glue that pulls all these aspects together. What is the glue that makes L&D a key area, that helps attract and retain top talent? What is the glue that creates great culture and the secret sauce that a CLO will need to get the best from their team? Trust. Trust is the glue, the secret sauce that makes all of this work, so in our eyes the Superpower of the decade is Trust.

We’re starting to see that businesses are recognising the importance of learning within the leadership structure through the increased investments of time and money for this change to occur. It’s our hope, at The Trusted Executive, that business leads the way for other institutions, including politics and sports, to follow suit in the investment of learning and development.