Create Your Own L&D Department
I have a passion for all that has to do with Learning and Development (L&D), for helping new individuals in their learning, but also supporting others develop their professional skills. And because I love what I’m doing so much, I also enjoy sharing what I’ve learned and done over the years in Learning and Development. What can you learn from this article? In this article, I’ll outline the ten steps needed to create a new L&D department that can:
- Develop durability
- Have its own culture
- Help the team grow and improve their skills
- Increase levels of proactivity, independence, and responsibility, by involving them in different projects
So, let’s begin!
10 Steps For Creating And Organizing An L&D Department
1. Have Your Own Onboarding From the Company
Get to know the company culture, company vision and mission, learn about the company services/products, get to know your other colleagues and collaborators by understanding their roles and how and when your department will collaborate with them.
2. Create Your Own Strategy
Start creating your own strategy as a manager, ideally step by step, focusing on the three-month mark, the six-month mark, and the one-year mark.
3. Create A Presentation Of Your Own Department
Create a presentation of your own department for your new team, based on your just developed strategy. This will help your team have an overview on your vision as a manager, know how the team will be divided, what its main activities and projects/program will be, and what the processes will be.
4. Start Working On Processes
Start working on the processes that will help you and your team work efficiently, organized and based on a good collaboration process with other stakeholders. These can include: handbooks, review processes, a learning communication process within the company, new hire announcements, newsletters, welcome email for team members, collaboration with other teams, etc.
5. Start The Hiring Process
Start the hiring process by preparing the questions, assessments, and exercises. Collaborate with the HR team to publish and promote your roles, recruit candidates and schedule interviews, hold the interviews, and then select the best candidates that fit with your project needs.
6. Start The Onboarding Process For Your Team
Start by outlining the strategy, the organization of the Learning and Development department, the projects or programs, other activities in which they will participate (if applicable), and the next stages.
7. Have Your First team Meeting
At your first team meeting you should:
- Set up the administrative part
The recurrence of team meetings, their date and time, who will lead the meetings, who will take notes, etc.
- Talk about one-to-one sessions
Whether your team members prefer to schedule them as they choose or whether they prefer recurrent sessions.
- Divide the team
For the main tasks, and as needed. If there are any extra development projects from the beginning, identify possible volunteers and get them involved.
- Talk about the evaluation and professional development process for your team
What will the main KPIs be, and how will be the evaluation proceed, what are your plans to help them grow professionally, what projects will be created for them to learn more, etc.
- Create your own team group/channel
To enable your team to communicate better, identify and share solutions for your projects situations, and inspire cooperation among team members.
8. Assign An Onboarding Buddy
This is optional. If you already have enough team members, assign an onboarding buddy for new employees, and allow them time to shadow their onboarding buddy. This will help the new members understand the main tasks better and learn more about the processes, and it will make their initial activities easier for them.
9. Start The Projects/Activities
Here the team will start researching about their tasks, looking for ways to identify how to solve problems and perform better. During this time, they will probably still need your support, so it would be really helpful for them to know that everyone from the team can work together to identify solutions.
10. Improve Your Team’s Skills
By developing extra projects, providing useful learning resources/trainings, asking them for feedback from time to time on which topics they would prefer to learn more about, etc., you can think of ways to improve your skill levels as a team.
I hope this article will help the new manager/ leader know how to start a new project/program within a company, and also how to help grow and keep motivated their teams, by listing the main steps for organizing such an endeavor. Knowing that your team can rely on you as a leader, that they can learn from you, and that they can later develop and pursue their own professional paths, is incredibly useful.
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