You’re wasting your money if you invest in formal training and development programs. That’s what Jay Cross says. Instead of pouring money down the drain to support programs that affect only 10-20 percent of what workers actually learn, you’d be better off supporting informal learning. How?

  • Provide time for informal learning on the job.
  • Create useful, peer-rated FAQs and knowledge bases.
  • Provide places for workers to congregate and learn.
  • Supplement self-directed learning with mentors and experts.
  • Set up help desks for informal inquiries.
  • Build networks, blogs, Wikis and knowledge bases to facilitate discovery.
  • Use smart tech to make it easier to collaborate and network.
  • Encourage cross-functional gatherings.

Even more interesting is the following assertion:

Most training is built on the pessimistic assumption that the trainees are deficient. Training’s job is to fix what’s broken rather than make what’s good better.

Is this true where you work? What can you do to better approach learning as a way to improve people rather than “fix” them?