Microlearning for ‘skill development’: a perspective for L&Dmanagers

A Skill is a learned ability to perform a set of actions. A skill when used gets you results only if the learning happens right. With the right absorption of learning content, the results are also right. This in turn enables the individual trainee with an ability to execute upon the learned skill consistently. 

Skill is considered to be imbibed or acquired only when the approach, time, effort and energy-expended are all in tune with one another. A learning program is successful only when your learners are able to use a certain skill efficiently and effectively.

As L&D leaders, we are required to develop general as well as domain-specific skills. General skills include elements like teamwork, leadership, managerial qualities, time management, leadership, motivating teams, and so on. 

Specific skills, on the other hand, are used to deliver on a certain targeted or niche-area jobs. Well trained and empowered workforce on business critical skills is always a great advantage to the organization.

L&D managers are required to continually update and upskill their workforce on changing business, technological, and environmental factors that may be internal as well as external to business.

This is where microlearning has a decisive role to play, be it technical, human, or conceptual category of skills. Microlearning tools can deliver on both hard (technical, processes, procedures, techniques etc.) and soft skills (social, communication, traits, attitudes, emotional etc.)

‘Plain theory’ versus ‘Interactive microlearning’

Theory certainly not good enough in a skill development scenario. Acquiring a new skill, adding to an existing one, or adjusting/adapting to changes calls for precise learning interventions.

Before we devise microlearning content, we need to be able to help our learners assess their current capabilities, current skill level, understand the concrete steps to acquire hard or soft skill, and take action accordingly.

The microlearning content design needs to incorporate ways of practicing on-the-job. A microlearning tool must be used to simulate a situation esp. application of a soft or hard skill in a scenario based game or question. This is where interactive microlearning plays a great role in enhancing the skill of your employees.

For instance, given below is an example of microlearning content on developing a generic yet critical skill development on ‘leadership’ in the context of managing high-performing and engaged remote teams.

The example above shows how a microlearning lesson can be created to enhance skill development. The microlearning platforms offer a much wider array of interactive and gaming-based templates to do so!

Microlearning approach to ‘skill development’ explained

As a content creator for your skill development microlearning lesson you could do the following:

  • Provide gripping statistics that shows how effective leaders emerge winners in a challenging situation like managing and motivating a remote team!
  • Offer 3 to 5 tips as lessons on dedicated pages. A simple yet consistently repeated content-design will help you deliver your message and skill-based learning in short bursts. The readers will know how to focus on concrete and practical steps to be followed
  • With multiple tips, you also allow your mature learners (leaders) to use discretion in understanding and assessing tips that will work for them, and which ones they must use
  • By the end of the microlearning lesson, each of your learners will create a roadmap of their own, and commit the learnings into their work situations
  • This way, your microlearning lesson helps each learner take responsibility and ownership of how they will develop a particular skill, and optimize on their teams’ results. In a situation like the above example, there is certainly no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ way to develop and implement a skill!

This example above can be used in an array of templates provided in the team coordination tools (microlearning platform) to help you quickly build your skill development microlearning lesson!

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