Learning Ecosystems, Creating Innovative, Lean, and Tech-driven Learning Strategies is by Katja Schipperheijn, an internationally recognized learning strategist and founder of Habit of Improvement, a consultancy that focuses on learning strategies that foster growth and well-being in a human-machine symbiosis. Schipperheijn is based in Antwerp, Belgium and Dubai, UAE.
Learning Ecosystems delivers what the title promises. In 272 pages, the five parts of Schipperheijn’s book and numerous included case studies by corporate leaders and other experts guide the reader, from an in-depth overview and analysis of the current learning needs for future learning and development (L&D) success, to a five-step process for building LearnScapes (learning ecosystems). Schipperheijn’s key focus is the challenge that L&D faces in every organization today in order to become a core component of business strategy.
LearnScapes themselves are practical, not complicated, once the reader understands the elements involved while dealing with an increasingly complicated world. The objective is a tailored learning strategy for each organization rather than a cut-and-dried solution. Schipperheijn’s keywords to describe the characteristics of LearnScapes are "nimble, adaptive, creative, and scalable".
Although building a LearnScape that fits your organization need not be complicated, it will be hard work, it will take time, and you will not likely be free from opposition. Schipperheijn recognizes that studies show 93 percent of executives lack the right focus to explore innovative strategies “based on an intelligent symbiosis between people and technology.” But if you want to bring new ideas to your organization, and if you are in the right role and have the right expertise, you will find that her book will walk you through the process. The book will help you develop the expertise.
What's in the book?
A quick review of the sections of the book will give you an idea of the range of the content:
Part One: A world in ever-increasing change
- The world of human and machine
- The value driven organization
- The data driven organization
Part Two: Learning to stay relevant for the future
- Lifelong learning in a world of change
- Competencies that make us unique as human beings
Part Three: Learning strategies and technology
- Can learning strategies stand the test of time?
- Learning technologies
Part Four: Lean learning ecosystems and LearnScapes
- The learning maturity model: from data repositories to LearnScapes
- Lean learning
- The six drivers of LearnScapes to make learning central
Part Five: Building LearnScapes
- Step 1: Discovery: analyzing the current learning needs for future success
- Step 2: Burning platform: a supported choice for change
- Step 3: Path to improvement: where technology, content, and the learning culture come together
- Step 4: Joint execution: no success without cooperation
- Step 5: Future growth and improvement: never stop learning
Conclusion: Next Steps
Katja Schipperheijn presents a system, not a rote formula. You will want to give her book plenty of time in order to identify what will be required to make the changes and support them in your particular organization. I especially recommend Learning Ecosystems for your consideration if you are a manager or an executive as you plan for 2023.