Every 2 weeks, I have my 121 with our CEO, Sarah Goodall.
Amongst other things, we usually exchange various reflections based on what we read, learned or experienced over the previous 14 days.
One of the subjects that came up in our last meeting, was the clear link that we both now see between the inbound methodology and building a learning culture within the organisation.
Coincidently, straight after the meeting, I came across the below article that was recently published by Training Zone and it triggered even more thoughts.
So, what's the link between the inbound and learning culture?
Let's start by defining inbound.
In the simplest of terms, inbound is about attracting and serving customers by openly sharing your knowledge and expertise in a frictionless way.
This is done through the creation of content that educates by openly sharing answers and solutions to the most common questions and challenges.
It's about making the information easily and readily available online for the audiences that you serve.
The approach described above creates trust, saves time, kickstarts a great experience for your future clients and delivers an ongoing delight for your existing clients.
However, the big question relating to the inbound methodology execution is about who should be responsible for the creation of this content. The answer that we believe in is - everyone within your organisation!
Easily said, I know...
How do you make this happen?
That's where the link to the learning organisation comes into place.
Whether you use the inbound methodologies or not, your employees should be conscious of the fact that their main responsibility, regardless of which role they play in the organisation (even if they work in finance, HR or another non-client facing department) is about providing the best possible service to your customers.
A well-defined and communicated mission of the organisation helps drive this understanding by painting a clear picture of who are your customers and how you serve them.
However, we live in a dynamic world and without continuous learning and improvement, things such as constantly changing circumstances and - relating to this - gaps in your employees' knowledge/skills could make it difficult to make the mission come true.
Following this train of thought further, by allowing your employees to spend more time on learning and developing their technical and soft skills you could minimise the gaps.
Applying this strategy could also have another benefit.
It could help you achieve even better results when it comes to your inbound marketing results!
Here is why.
By committing to building a learning culture within your company you will not only gain more knowledge and skills that will help you adjust more rapidly to the new circumstances.
Creating a learning culture focused on driving employees development will, firstly and foremostly, show that you care for your people.
This, in return, will result in your employees carrying even more about your customers. How? By being more willing to share their own experience, knowledge and skills with your clients through e.g. providing you with that content that you always struggle to produce!
The content that is the result of your investment in your employees' growth.
The content that will then contribute to your clients' growth in more profound ways than ever before.
People are smart and, if it’s presented in the right way they will get this at all levels. A learning culture is a win/win for everyone. People are key to the success of the entire organisational strategy. They have so much knowledge and experience stored in their heads, so much talent and so many skills. They are the great untapped resource in our organisations that you can't replicate with a bit of instructional design and filling classrooms, and nor should you want to. Leaders and managers are essential to provide the right permissions and to lead by example.