Is there a difference between training and learning? Yep, there is.

Merriam-Webster defines training as “the skill, knowledge or experience acquired by one that trains”. Learning is defined as “knowledge or skill acquired by instruction”.  Very similar by definition but different in practice.  Simply put, training is the process that teaches; learning is the absorption of knowledge which improves ones skills. That’s the difference.

We’ve all been trained. You know, sitting in a room with a bunch of coworkers, an instructor standing in front of the group talking away and three hours later you leave. Do you remember what the topic was after you leave let alone a week from now

Training is viewed as an “event” often centered on a department or specific group of people. It checks the boxes. It’s a familiar setting for most of us. Think high school or college classroom. The conference room at work. Sound familiar?  Training is the “how”; the point here, click here part.

If training is an event, what is learning? Learning is continuous. Learning happens during a training event, during discussions with coworkers or on your drive to work. It happens all the time whether you recognize it as such or not. Learning is self-driven. You are seeking the knowledge and opportunity to learn. It is the understanding of the “why” behind the “how”.

What does all this mean for us at RG Group? A lot. It is important to us that we create a learning environment. An environment where we share knowledge, solicit feedback, celebrate our successes and use our failures as a springboard to learning.

In the coming months we will be revamping our learning and development processes and programs. Classroom sessions (yes, they are still an important part of learning) will evolve to be more interactive – a “PDD” approach — Present, Demonstrate, Do. Teach the topic, show how it works and then put it into action.  Suggestions from you will drive course content. Who knows better what’s needed?

We’ll be expanding our course content delivery beyond the classroom setting too. V-Learning (visual learning) is underway. These are quick hit videos demonstrating how to do a task or explaining a subject that are available anytime in the Training Videos section for the RGWeb Training page.  Stay tuned; more updates are coming!

Don’t misunderstand this article. Training is still important. You have to know how to get between points “A” and “B”. But, learning is essential. Once you get to point “B”, do you know why you’re there? Someone can teach. Only you can learn.

So, what have you learned today?