From the Editor - Michelle Eggleston Schwartz, CPTM

We’ve all heard the reports: Employee engagement rates are low, and maintaining alignment between the needs of the business and the personal needs of employees is a struggle. While this isn’t new information, it’s an ongoing challenge that continues to plague organizations globally — a challenge that deserves our attention as learning and development (L&D) professionals. Low employee engagement can create a domino effect of negative implications for companies, contributing to reduced productivity and motivation, increased absenteeism and ultimately, turnover.  

L&D can play a key role in improving employee engagement. Research shows that organizations are recognizing that today’s employee value professional development and, in turn, are investing in L&D initiatives to support and retain their teams. Engaging learners necessitates a multifaceted approach, requiring L&D to deliver relevant information when and where employees need it most.  

Let’s face it: Today’s employees are overwhelmed. Employees are juggling a multitude of priorities stemming from changing business goals, the emergence of new technologies and tools and meeting the rising expectations of customers and clients — all while completing their daily work responsibilities. How can organizations help cut through the noise and support their workforce? The answer: intentional learning. 

This issue of Training Industry Magazine examines how L&D can create relevant and engaging learning experiences that unlock creativity, motivation and purpose for all employees. Articles in this edition address many factors that contribute toward learner engagement, including mental health and employee well-being, creating inclusive learning programs and materials, using immersive technology to bring training to life, making learning more memorable through storytelling and overcoming training fatigue.  

As the role of L&D continues to evolve, learning professionals must ensure that their programs are not only engaging but also lead to real behavior change and business results. Maintaining a balance between meeting the needs of learners and business leaders is a challenge. L&D professionals must be strategic as they plan their training programs, ensuring that they align their programs with the goals of the business and deliver it to learners in a way that achieves the best outcomes.   

I hope the articles in this magazine provide you with some tips and insight into how L&D can create intentional learning experiences to nurture the growth and development of your workforce. As always, we love hearing from you, so please send any comments or feedback to our team and let us know how you are leveraging training to engage your workforce.