Future of Learning Microlearning

If Unconscious Bias Training Is the First Step, What’s the Second?

After Starbucks rolled out their unconscious bias training in response to the incident in April, the public seemed to come to a consensus: unconscious bias training is a good first step, but it can’t be the only step.

At Grovo, we believe that addressing bias is a continual pursuit that starts with learning and never ends. In fact, we’re working on an action plan to help anyone who wants to know how to follow up on their unconscious bias training and make sure they see real positive change (stay tuned for more soon). And that’s also why we’re continuing to address topics that have roots in unconscious bias in our library. We just released new Sexual Harassment Prevention training that encourages people to examine how their biases can contribute to toxic and unsafe workplace cultures.

But while training and workplace learning is being upheld as an initial solution to unconscious bias, it’s worth taking a second to think about how those of us in L&D can keep up the momentum beyond that first step. We have our employees’ attention now, so how can we build on that engagement? Where do we go from here?

Let’s take a look at a few potential areas of employee learning that we could address:

Creating an inclusive workplace

Now that everyone is examining their biases and behaviors, it’s a great time to go all out in creating an inclusive workplace.

Our new Sexual Harassment Prevention training is unlike anything else out there, in that it builds on unconscious bias training to target the root causes of harassment. Instead of creating another sexual harassment training that’s sole purpose is to document compliance, we realized the time was right to give a real learning opportunity that could help people take accountability for their workplace culture, spot problematic trends, and find the words to speak up.

There are any number of topics you could pick that would help make your workplace more inclusive, from LGBTQ Inclusion, to Mental Health in the Workplace, to training on microaggressions.

Building teams without bias

Creating a safe and inclusive culture means you need to have a diverse and inclusive team. Consider offering training on your various recruiting practices: from preventing discrimination in hiring to conducting behavior-based interviews to building smart teams. Each of those topics has a direct effect on your team, because the people you bring in and the dynamics you create on your team will dictate the results your team gets.

You can’t afford to let unconscious bias dictate the people you hire or the way your team functions. Following up your unconscious bias training with one of those topics can be a powerful way to make a real difference on your team.

Old classics (from fresh angles)

One of the goals of unconscious bias training is to help employees slow down their thinking and consider alternative angles to things they usually think about in one way. So now that your team is thinking of things differently, take the opportunity to reconsider the ways you’ve done more standard things in the past.

For example, take a topic like facilitating meetings. We’ve all been in so many meetings at this point, it can be tempting to just go with what’s worked in the past. But by slowing down and questioning assumptions about what makes meetings effective, we can find ways of making them even better. Simple things like giving people more time to prepare, going over the goal of the meeting, and alloting the right amount of time to each agenda item can go a long way.

There are plenty of other topics too, like giving presentations, productivity, or ownership that are ripe for a little inclusive disruption too. By helping your employees change the ways they approach work, you can help them improve their performance and work more inclusively.

Let’s keep the momentum going

Right now, it feels like there’s too much for learning practitioners to do in too little time. With L&D being seen increasingly as a catalyst to build more inclusive cultures, it’s our opportunity to extend our reach across our organizations.

At Grovo, we want to help everyone make safer more inclusive workplaces while we still have the momentum. If you haven’t yet, check out our free unconscious bias lessons. And if you’ve already done that, please go through 10 of our new Sexual Harassment Prevention Mircolearning lessons. Join us, and let’s continue past that first step together.

Microlearning New Content

Announcing Grovo’s New Sexual Harassment Prevention Training. Available for Free.

“So, how would you rate your current sexual harassment prevention training?”

Cue long pause, awkward stare, and maybe a shrug. Over the last several weeks, I’ve journeyed from San Diego to New York and back again, attending multiple conferences and events targeting the learning and development industry. I’ve opened many conversations with this question and have been saddened, though not surprised, by the response. The fact is, we don’t often think about appraising this training for quality or impact, nor do we hold it to the same high standards as our other corporate learning offerings such as leadership, diversity and inclusion, and team-building. So why do we tolerate mediocre training for a topic that’s so important?

Sexual harassment prevention training was initially born out of the result of two major court cases of the 1990s and was primarily viewed as a way for organizations to limit liability and demonstrate compliance with state and federal laws. Unfortunately, the resulting training hasn’t proved effective in actually preventing sexual harassment. And, as it exists today, this critical training fails in two important ways:

  1. It actually reinforces gender stereotypes through the consistent portrayal of powerful men and weak women, and
  2. It can alienate learners who don’t identify as either “victim” or “harasser,” leaving them nonplussed, believing that they don’t play a role in keeping a workplace free from sexual harassment. (For a thorough look at that research, check out a fabulous piece by Claire Cain Miller.)

For decades, we’ve lumped this important training with other compliance training and have been satisfied to deploy it (no matter how bad the content is) and collect attendee signatures, believing that we’re prepared for whatever lawsuit may come. Because ultimately, the typical sexual harassment prevention training is about proving compliance. The goal is just to have a training, period. No one’s thinking about creating a learning experience that leads to real change.

I think we can all agree: that’s not enough.

Yes, companies need to demonstrate compliance and document that employees took the training. But while we deploy this training, we must also provide a meaningful learning opportunity that builds trust, inclusion, and productivity. The training has to work.

That’s why Grovo has created a very different brand of sexual harassment content. In addition to meeting the compliance requirements, it also targets critical mindsets and behaviors to catalyze meaningful change.

  • We’ve targeted the root cause of harassment by incorporating elements of unconscious bias training in the program. This facilitates the necessary pause for employees to look inward and assess their own bias before learning how to detect it in the workplace.
  • We’re promoting an active bystander approach, which research shows will both demonstrate the relevance of the training and empower employees to call out instances of harassment when they occur.
  • We’re gearing everything toward the building of inclusive teams and inclusive cultures. Because we know that the small exclusions that are the by-product of hostile work environments are what cause major long-term damage to the productivity and agility of corporations.

Like many of you, I too have had the difficult experience of creating and delivering sub-par sexual harassment prevention training. I remember talking through the confusing legal language around “quid pro quo” and “hostile work environment,” popping in the bizarrely awkward and cringe-worthy video, and gathering signatures from employees. Even back then I wondered what actually changed on account of this training. And now, I’m in a position to do something about it.

I recognize that a redesigned sexual harassment prevention training is a small part of impacting a company’s culture. And I also realize that real change doesn’t happen after one training. But I do believe change is possible when you give people real, impactful learning opportunities that help them take accountability for their workplace culture, spot problematic trends, and find the words to speak up.

So here’s my request. Take a look at what modern sexual harassment prevention training looks like. We’ve made 10 of our newly released lessons available for free, because we believe it’s important for anyone and everyone to learn how they can prevent and respond to sexual harassment. If you like them, please share them with others. Let’s work together to finally stop sexual harassment and create workplaces where everyone is safe, included, and able to thrive.

Future of Learning Happening at Grovo Microlearning

Grovo is Cornerstone OnDemand’s 2018 Content Partner of the Year. And Things Just Got Even Better With Availability of Grovo Create Within Cornerstone.

Last week at their annual Convergence Partner Summit in San Diego, Cornerstone OnDemand (CSOD) recognized Grovo as its Content Partner of the Year. I am absolutely thrilled that we were selected for this prestigious industry award amongst CSOD’s distinguished group of 35 partners in its growing content ecosystem.

The partnership with CSOD is not just an integral part of our go-to-market strategy. We both also share a similar vision of the future of the L&D industry where relevant and modern content is delivered in the flow of how people actually get their work done. By combining our industry-leading Microlearning® content with CSOD’s industry-leading talent management system, companies can deploy effective learning today with the best product and user experience in the market.

In forging such a close relationship with CSOD, we’ve been able to collectively give more organizations of all sizes and across every industry the opportunity to leverage and learn from our Microlearning® content right within the Cornerstone platform.

Working in tandem with the talent management system at the heart of our customers’ organizations is essential to making microlearning a core part of any organization’s learning strategy. We’re pleased to be able to bring more of our content into those organizations that are using Grovo and Cornerstone to transform their approach to learning.

And while it’s thrilling to be recognized by a leader, a trusted brand, and an invaluable partner, this is just the beginning for our burgeoning relationship.

Today, I’m proud to announce that Cornerstone OnDemand customers can now use Grovo to tailor and create their own targeted Microlearning® content that meets the specific needs of their organization.

Grovo Create will be available as an add-on to the existing platform and allow organizations to further benefit from the winning combo of our customizable content library and Cornerstone’s content service to truly integrate learning into the flow of everyone’s daily work. Now, joint customers can access Grovo within Content Anytime, the complete Grovo Microlearning Library, and customize Grovo content using Create- a complete microlearning solution-without ever leaving Cornerstone’s solution.

Our partnership has allowed organizations like Fossil Group and Iberia Bank to seamlessly integrate Grovo’s Microlearning® content into the Cornerstone Learning Suite in order to accelerate employee development and drive performance.

Thank you Cornerstone and our amazing customers!

To learn more about Microlearning and how it can power your organization’s modern learning strategy, read our guide Microlearning: The Modern Strategy for the Modern Workplace.