The Transformer Chief Learning Officer | HBR

Talent Development

It is no surprise that workplace learning continues to evolve at a breakneck speed. Business practices change frequently, new technologies seem to emerge weekly, and industries continue to undergo rapid transformation. And with the current coronavirus pandemic, organizations are being required to transform, practically overnight, how and where they work–both of which require upskilling and reskilling at speed and scale. Each of these factors continues to evolve the role of the Chief Learning Officer (CLO). In this HBR article, the notion of the Transformer CLO is presented and is shorthand for “one who reshapes capabilities and organizational culture.” These CLOs are driving three primary types of change in their organizations. 1) Learning Goals – shifting the focus from the development of skills to the development of mindsets and capabilities that will help workers perform well now and adapt smoothly in the future. 2) Learning Methods – making them more experiential and immediate, and making content delivery more bite-sized and delivered when needed, 3) Learning Teams and Department – making them leaner, more agile, and more strategic. For each of these three areas, the article offers practical tactics. The current landscape presents an enormous opportunity for CLOs and their teams to reimagine workplace learning and position their employees, and organizations, to successfully meet the demands of their current jobs and more easily adapt to future changes.

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