The Power of Personalization In L&D


February 3, 2022

Given the state of constant change in the workplace (and the world), the day-to-day needs of your people can change on a dime. Ever-altering business priorities, who they work with, what they work on, and where they work are all moving targets. Based on this alone, the support we give our managers needs to be agile and able to be personalized to their timely needs. But even in “normal” times, there’s untold power in having a personalized approach to learning and development that occurs in the flow of work.

“We can’t design programs to meet the needs of every manager or anticipate what they need at a specific time. Peer coaching is a single program that meets each person where they are – mass personalization.”

CHRO, Tech Company

Why Personalization Matters

Many learning and development programs are based on the goal of growing “power skills” like emotional intelligence, communication, adaptability, creativity, collaboration, leadership, and time-management.

Personalization of development programs matters so much because each manager is coming from a unique starting point, with their own unique behaviors to unlearn and challenges to overcome. Personalization of development programs introduces a level of flexibility, allowing the manager to tailor the experience to themselves, increasing the speed and velocity of learning these crucial power skills.

On the flip side, lack of personalization can lead to lower rates of adoption of learning and development programs. Due to the frenetic pace of most workplaces, it’s easy for a manager to de-prioritize a development opportunity if it doesn’t help them in the immediate short-term.

Personalization and In-The-Flow Learning

Many traditional learning programs are built on the model that best facilitates “hard skill” learning, but power skills are learned in an inherently different way than technical skills. These skills must be practiced in the flow-of-work, in real life situations, not in classrooms.

Technical vs Human Skills

One of the big breakthroughs we discovered with peer coaching was the natural integration of learning into the day to day life of an employee.  When peers at a company can come together for structured conversations, they’re able to identify and practice those soft skills, with built in reflection and application time.

As they continue their conversations every two weeks, they’re building psychological safety while applying these skills in real-time. This is where those “aha” moments come from.  It’s learning in the flow of work that’s available for everyone at your organization, while building connections across silos.

How It Works

Based on years of research and expertise, Imperative matches peers across a company for regular guided coaching conversations.

Every two weeks, peers are guided through a personalized conversation that is scientifically engineered to be psychologically safe, positive, reflective, and energizing. These conversations enable employees to grow their power skills in the flow of work through practice and reflection.

During each conversation, each peer commits to one action they want to complete before they meet next, driving behavior change through commitment and accountability.  Every quarter, they’re matched with a new peer, building a boundary-spanning network.

Does It *Actually Work?

Our trailblazing clients like Zillow, Hasbro, and Boston Scientific have seen these results across their organization by using the Imperative Platform:

  • Personal Growth—78% of employees report peer coaching made them more successful
  • Deeper Connections—89% of connections created build a meaningful and sustained relationship
  • Holistic Wellbeing—Employees leave each conversation with 2.4X more positive emotions
  • Shared Purpose—85% of employees report the ability to connect their purpose to their work
  • Radical Flexibility—After every conversation, 80% of employees take action to craft their job

Our mission at Imperative is to humanize work and make work more fulfilling for every person.  After 30,000 hours of peer coaching conversations, the data is in: peer coaching is the bright spot you’re looking for. Let’s chat about how we can bring this to life for your company.

See the platform in action