Strategic Learning: Don’t leave action to chance

inca-constellationsWe offer learning events to provide opportunities for people to get what they need to be more effective. Sometimes this goal is achieved, but often the transfer of learning into action is left to chance. A learning strategy connects the change that we are trying to make in the world — our larger organizational strategy — with activities most appropriate for the people we are focused on. It challenges us to think before and after about what will be different because of our learning activities. It creates a system that sustains action over time.

In many ways that system is like a constellation. It connects the bright shiny objects we see — workshops, conferences, and webinars — to each other and to us. It also draws attention to the dark space around the luminous stars, quiet times in which we reflect and connect with peers. (The Incas saw life within these “dark constellations.”) It takes this full system of light and dark to create the shapes that generations recognize in the night sky. Likewise, it takes learning events and an intentional structure of support and reflection to move big ideas into action.

This graphic is designed for associations and others thinking about how to create a learning strategy. It can also be downloaded as a pdf here


Published by Nancy

I work at the intersection of learning, nonprofits, and leadership. I am a teacher, instructional designer, and nonprofit person who has worn every hat possible. I regular write, speak, and consult on learning strategy, design, and leadership.

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