Transitioning to a New Reality for L&D
About This Episode
With such rapid change, time for reflection is hard to come by. As we learn and grow during this time of great transformation, consider adopting a forward-looking lens. In this episode of The Edge, Michael Rochelle, Chief Strategy Officer and Principal HCM Analyst at Brandon Hall Group, joins host Michelle Boockoff-Bajdek to share timely research and insight about the state of the learning and development field.
The views expressed by guests are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of Skillsoft.
Michelle BB 00:00:07 Welcome to The Edge, a Skillsoft podcast for learners and leaders alike. In every episode, we engage in candid and thought provoking conversations on the topic of learning and growth in the workplace. And if you are a learning and development professional, who is navigating your organization through the COVID 19 pandemic, there's not been a lot of time to stop, to take a breath, to reflect on what you've learned. So let's think about that for a moment. You've likely facilitated multiple transformations of how, where when, and even why your organization's employees learn. And you've probably accomplished quite a bit, but that work never stops. And you have to apply what you've learned, not only in real time, but with an eye to the future. So you may be asking yourself during those fleeting moments, you have a reflection when the pandemic gives way to a new phase from the lessons you've learned and from the changes you've made, what will you carry forward today?
Michelle BB 00:01:04 We're going to cast this lens upon the field of learning and development. And I am excited to say that today's episode will highlight a wealth of new and timely research that our listeners can learn from and apply to their own forward-looking plans. The research comes from Brendan hall group, the largest and oldest independent human capital management research and advisory firm in the industry with more than 10,000 global clients across 20 industry segments. For more than 25 years, Brandon Hall group has been delivering research-based solutions that empower excellence and organizations around the world through its research and insights. Now, the firm conducted a study of more than 400 organizations around the globe representing more than 30 industries. And the study's title reflects a theme that we in the learning and development field are managing every day transitioning to the new realities of the COVID-19 experience. And to me transitioning is that operative word here it's different than reacting in the moment or guessing what the future might be like.
Michelle BB 00:02:09 What you'll hear today are data-driven examples of L and D professionals like you who are taking action to reshape learning to foster engagement, to take care of employee wellbeing and to create a more inclusive workplace. The research comes together to tell a story, a narrative that illustrates what it's like to be a champion for knowledge and skill building. And our guest today will help tell that story. His name is Michael Rochelle, and he is a principal and chief strategy officer at Brandon Hall group. Michael is also one of the firm's principal, HCM analysts, covering learning and development, talent management, talent, acquisition, leadership development, diversity equity, and inclusion, and workforce management and HR. Michael, welcome to the edge. Thank you, Michelle. Thank you for having me. It is a pleasure to have you here, so let's start things off. Can you give us an overview of what you sought to learn through your research and perhaps share some key findings that you believe reflect the current state of learning and development?
Michael 00:03:12 Well, sure. I think top of mind for a lot of folks is what's going on with instructor led training. So folks at first, at first blush were very concerned about how to make that transition, but we've seen a fairly orderly transition and, and productivity levels. Haven't slipped from a learning and development standpoint. Surprisingly majority of organizations, we talked to say that they've been able to, uh, what challenges to be able to keep pace with the learning. And I think that that widespread adoption and advancement for digital learning has been accelerated by the pandemic, but I think it's brought great results. And we've seen from the research too, that three out of four organizations will probably keep their current level of digital learning and instructor led training transformation, post pandemic, only 11% said they would go back to the way they were. So I think there is some permanence that they're showing.
Michael 00:04:12 I also think too, that folks realize they have some homework to do from a technology standpoint. And I think COVID is kind of shine a magnifying glass or flashlight on that idea that, you know, technology is what gives you that personalized learning at scale. And it gives you more learning, agility, more flexibility for the organization. So we see that as a vulnerability that needs to be addressed. So many organizations are jumping on that. And lastly, I think that folks are spending more time on increasing the emotional IQ of their leaders during this difficult time. So we're seeing a lot of inclusive behavior, demonstration, education, training awareness, you know, improving that self-awareness, self-control empathy, really making sure that, you know, during this time of feeling like we're sticks in the wind, as far as employees, you know, that leaders are reaching out and making those connections and really having the patience and guidance with their employees to make them feel safe, stable, secure, and be that guiding light to what needs to get done and, and be their, their partner in their success now in their learning, which I think has happened more so than ever.
Michelle BB 00:05:27 Yeah, that's, that's great. And I think we're going to touch on in those inclusive behaviors and employee wellbeing in, in a, in a little bit. Um, but I wanted to ask you if we talk, if we talked a little bit about current state, um, where we are with the COVID-19 pandemic and what L and D professionals have been doing, let's move now to what they're thinking about and hopefully planning for, in terms of what comes next and your research uncovered insights about how LND professionals view two things with an eye towards when the pandemic eases from its current state. And one is the importance of learning and those areas like skills and knowledge and development that organizations view as important. But the other factor, and you touched on this a little bit earlier is the role of digital learning, because to your point, we're probably not going to go fully back into, um, the way that we operated from an IOT perspective. So can you share a little bit more about those two aspects from the study?
Michael 00:06:25 Well, sure. Is it, uh, to be specific around that that three out of four companies, just about half of them said that that digital learning will be the driver going forward and they'll increase demand on it. And the another 30% or so on top of that said that, you know, it'll digital learning may change and shifts that may go up and down a little bit, but it'll never return to the pre pandemic level. So I think the majority of organizations have turned the corner on saying digital learning is the right place to be. It's a focus on the future and the things that they're putting in place today. I think there's a level of, of enthusiasm around saying, we don't have to do this just because of the pandemic. This is good, solid work that we can put in place that's foundational to our success and learning and development and increasing the potentiality of our talent. And so what we laid down today can be that strong foundation for the future. So although it's a, it's a terrible situation where in organizations are finding this as an opportunity to create a permanent transformation with their alert.
Michelle BB 00:07:37 Yeah, it's fascinating because I was talking to, um, an L and D professional on an earlier podcast who share that they had been trying to build, um, an online university for a very, very long time. And there was a lot of resistance and the pandemic obviously forced them to move into a digital environment. And as a result, they've seen a tremendous and positive results, not just in terms of, um, learning achieved, but also just satisfaction with the format. And so, you know, it really does make me think that digital learning is coming into its own, which is kind of strange to say, because it's been around for a very long time. Yes,
Michael 00:08:21 That's true. But I think what organizations are embracing that that's a critical element. Michelle too, is the idea that you have to embrace that it's, self-paced learning. You know, organizations are always in a hurry to have people learn because they've got big objectives and the quicker folks learn. So how many times have professionals like you and I over the years talked about time and proficiency time to effect in this time to onboarding with organizations have realized now through the pandemic, is that to truly embrace digital learning, you have to the fact that learners are going to be in control of their own learning. They're going to be accountable for it, responsible for it, but they're going to move at a, at a pace in that a cadence. And also they may learn not in the order that we think they're going to learn, because when you're learning in the flow of work and it's digital learning, you learn what you need to learn for that moment.
Michael 00:09:13 And that may be step five on an eight step process. You know, one through four. It's not that it's not important, but it's not the step I'm on right now. So I think organizations because of the pandemic have loosened their grasp on saying we can allow employees to learn and develop themselves at their own pace and be in control of their own learning. We can provide the guidance to prerequisites, to structure the archetypes, but we can have employees learn on their own. And I think that was to break through in embracing digital learning was that self-paced
Michelle BB 00:09:45 Control. Yeah, I agree. And you know, it's not just in learning, right. We're seeing, you know, a real high profile, ongoing dialogue about how COVID-19 is transforming everything, how we live, how we interact, how we work, but when it comes to learning, I think, you know, you just pointed out that the pandemics effects were certainly a catalyst for action. And I think that, you know, some of those key elements of L and D how we learn, how we use technology, how it should be framed in the context of, of a business's goal and results, these elements, we, you know, I think in some cases we've been calling out for change for quite some time. So as we think about what this sort of call to action, what's next, what should organizations be thinking about in a go-forward plan? What do they need to be preparing for and, and what shifts do they need to maybe be making
Michael 00:10:38 Well, it's interesting, you know, there organizations are beginning to understand that the pandemic with all its catastrophic effects really put more of a magnification intensification on things that needed to be addressed, pretend DEMEC. And so those somewhat good, somewhat bad processes we had in place that somewhat kind of like kind of don't like technology. We had the kind of sort of competencies and skills that we thought were sort of, kind of okay for our team, you know, and developing and delivering learning. You know, what happened was, is as we were kind of struggling through time and resource constraints and having learning move at the speed of business, we knew what our shortcomings were. And I think what the pandemic did is it just grounded everything to an absolute hall and said, you can't go a step further without addressing these issues. Now, you know, you were kind of bumping along before, or you were trying to make it work as best you could, but now all the wheels came off.
Michael 00:11:43 And so I think what organizations are saying now is this is a call to action, you know, slash Maricopa, let's hit the reset button and let's really look at the competencies and skills or card of our learning team. Let's look at the processes we have in place for developing and delivering learning. And are they the best that they can be? Let's take a look at our technological environment and let's finally shore up those shortfalls and create that personalized learning at scale and get that learning agility going within our technological ecosystems, prove learner engagement, you know, get that data and analytics on people. So we can really be predictive about learning needs and addressing talent mobility. So I think it's a fresh start and I think many organizations are taking full advantage of this stress chart and allowing their learning organizations to kind of hit that cosmic reset button and say, let's get it right this time.
Michelle BB 00:12:41 I think you're right though. And I still think, and maybe it's because I sit here on WebEx or zoom or squat past as we're on today. And I, I still see tremendous tech shortfalls and not necessarily from the platforms themselves, but from the, you know, the pipes that, that I'm actually bringing the internet to us. For example, none of us could have predicted that this is where we would end up, that we would all be, uh, working in, or most of us would be working in a remote environment. And so I, I do still worry that the technology that we rely on is not as sound as it can and should be. And again, that's not just the platforms themselves. I mean, I don't think we would ever have imagined that all of us would be sitting on zoom and WebEx for hours upon end. And so, as you think about the technology piece, what concerns you the most?
Michael 00:13:33 Well, I think because there's this super heavy reliance on, uh, being the, you know, the connection, the lifeline to what used to be called an organizational setting. I think people are hypersensitive now about that connection. You know, they, technology is a channel it's, it's not like social media, social media is about a many to many, but when you're pushing through a single channel of like my computer, you know, bouncing back to a gateway to a piece of software, to then be able to say, I need to learn this or fill out my performance or what have you, you start to get hypersensitive because that's your only lifeline. So you start to worry about bandwidth and connectivity and lanes, all these things that you never cared about. You know, you're looking up on the internet, you know, trying to figure out why is it that my whole life revolves around one bar, two bars, three bars, how many, how many waves of the wifi?
Michael 00:14:30 So I think what we, what we have to be sensitive to is this could be for a period of time and for S for many folks, you know, may not maybe a permanence, you know, working from home. And so I think what we've gotta be cognizant about is how do we humanize technology? How do we make it so that if it feels comfortable, how do we make it? Like it can work when we need it to work, say in an offline environment, how do we make a digitized in the way that you can feel like it's a, you have a relationship, the software, you know, what the digital chats and, and, uh, being able to have digital assistants and bots. And I think we just have to humanize technology because I think forever we're going to be heavily dependent on it. And I think we have to stop treating software for people as software, being an enabler to get work done, and have it become that will Robinson the robot from lost in space, that unique relationship between technology and people that makes it humanized. And I think the more we do that, the more engaging we make technology, the more we'll improve that employee experience. And I think people will begin to say in my world of my living room or my guest bedroom or wherever I am, at least when I opened up my laptop, there's a friend waiting for me to help me to get my job done or improve who I am or make me feel better. You know, I think people are becoming highly reliant on this is, this is my lifeline. This is my portal.
Michelle BB 00:16:01 So Michael, there's an area of your research that, you know, has to play a key role in organization's plans. And you talked a little bit about this before, but you know, as they're thinking about transformations, the things that we want to see happen, now, the things that we need to carry forward into the future, um, one of the most important elements or areas is fostering that inclusive workplace, which is far more difficult now, right then than perhaps pre COVID. And I read in your study that 72% of the organizations surveyed gave fostering an inclusive workplace top marks amongst the most important people functions during this COVID-19 transition. So what has lifted it to the four and how do we, how do we foster an inclusive workplace when work and, and that workplace are no longer tied up?
Michael 00:16:51 Yeah. That's an interesting inflection point. That's one that we, we really pondered over in terms of looking at the research, both from interviewing companies and collecting the data, what we're able to deduce from it. I think it's, it's, it's gonna sound pretty obvious, pretty common senses. You know, it's one for all, all for one now, it's like, you can't, you can't be selective with your talent base. Now, you know, it was all hands on deck. You know, everyone had to row in the same direction. So that kind of coming together under a crisis that has happened so many times in our personal and professional life is really permutate to do organizational culture. And that's, what's driving that inclusive piece. It's breaking down the barriers of bias. It's breaking down the, you know, the, the few in the chosen the favorites to go tos and saying, everybody's got to be in, I don't have the time and the resources to be selected.
Michael 00:17:47 I've got to be inclusive. You know, so people I've got to tap everyone on the shoulder, wisdom of crowds get everybody's opinion, everyone's opinion is valid and matters. We're going to make feel everybody can weigh in and have something to contribute. I've got to foster that design thinking and problem solving capabilities. And I think adversity just brings that out naturally in human beings. And why would an organization that's made up of people, you know, behave any differently? Well, we, what we've seen, it's kind of interesting from an HR process standpoint is where the majority of companies are kind of working underneath that are written. You know, that that first layer of we've gotta be more inclusive, but they're looking at it as we're finally realizing that we have to be very speedy with our learning. You know, if you, we've got to get knowledge out there, quickly share it.
Michael 00:18:38 So all of these things that used to create silos and firewalls and the hierarchy of learning versus the why our archeology, we, everyone is burning that down and saying, we've got to create learning content in a very timely fashion. We've got to, we've got to empower people to do as quickly as possible. So the idea of monkeying around with, well, this person can know this person, they know this information and this person can, and this one's working on a device that isn't approved by that that's all out the window. The other thing that we've found is people are beginning to realize that we have to tune into the emotional, physical, and mental situation of people. You know, where they are from a wellbeing standpoint, I was listening to NPR a couple months ago, and they had, uh, two psychiatrists on though, uh, man and wife, and doing their therapy sessions out of the house.
Michael 00:19:32 And they, they, they said something that I thought was really interesting. It said that, you know, active listening, they were actually talking about relationships. But then I started thinking about it from a business standpoint. They said, you know, the reason why people are going at each other is because when your pulse rate gets above 80, which isn't hard to do in this environment, you actually trigger that fight or flight response. So you're no longer an active listener. So you're basically trying to figure out, am I going to, do you get out or am I going to run? Okay. And that really washed over me because can you imagine the amount of stress that people are under right now? And so their ability to absorb learning, or to absorb feedback from a manager right now, or be able to be in the moment, you know, that mindfulness, that presence, you know, if, if they just had a very uncomfortable situation happened home, or can't find a place where it's quiet or anything else that's going on doorbells ring, you're basically dealing with someone who's not able to be physiologically present.
Michael 00:20:33 And so we see companies now really saying, you know, let's, let's get some wellness benefits going temporarily, similarly, permanently let's open up employee assistance program services, let's get online therapists. Let's, let's get people as best we can to know that we care about them. You know, we're empathetic, we're going to do something about it. And so I think that's another key. All right. The other is, is people are finally realizing that we need decent succession planning. One of the biggest aspects of learning is for advancement, as we know, right. And advancement has been highly biased. It's usually, you know, I pick this person, not this person. I kind of feel an affinity towards this person and not this person. Now people are looking at being a purist, as far as succession planning. It's like, who is the best person to do this irrespective of my biases.
Michael 00:21:25 So we see that significantly feeding into this inclusive approach. We also think that in this VUCA environment, I mean, that's, that's in 40 font now, isn't it, you know, employees capacity to learn new skills under on, you know, in this kind of ongoing change event, that's extremely stressful. It was hard enough to get people to develop a new competency when things were calmer, because that's a behavioral change. Now it's like trying to change a tire on a moving car competency. So people are really, re-imagining what people can really learn and how much behavioral change can really take place during this time period. And finally, the idea is looking at for the people that, and this is particularly in some industries, the idea of essential worker, how do we compensate and reward and recognize this special group of people, you know, for putting their, literally putting their lives on the line. Right? And so these are some of the major areas that we saw that was driving now, um, very high number of creating a more inclusive workplace.
Michelle BB 00:22:28 So, you know, th this is fascinating because what I'm, you know, what I'm hearing you say is, is that there are so many more things that we have to take into consideration as learning and development professionals, and frankly, as HCM professionals, you know, the role has shifted, you know, w w I've talked about it as Maslow's hierarchy, right? Well, we're kind of at the food and shelter level where we're, we're worried about employee wellbeing and do we have enough PPE on hand and all of the things that you just described. And yet we still have to think about higher order things like succession planning and make sure that people, um, have the development and growth paths, not only in the jobs they currently have, but the ones that they would like to aspire to. So, you know, as you think about it, what needs to change from a, a design perspective in terms of our learning departments, are there things that we need to do differently? Are the, you know, will the makeup of this organization start to shift and do we need different kinds of talent leading these organizations?
Michael 00:23:33 Well, I think it has to, I think learning and development professionals have always had an eye, you know, and, and at the center of their, of their approach is to try to understand what the needs, but I think we've done it more from an inside out perspective. So we, we grabbed our subject matter experts. We grab our instructional designers and we build learning and anticipation that meet the needs of the learner. And I think what we've we've learned from, from what's going on now is that we have to build learning from the outside in, we, we have to become more performance consultants and we have to become more, um, more of like archeologists and anthropologists and, and, and discovers and explorers where we go out and understand the conditions of our learners and how much that's changed and the impact of those changing conditions have on their ability to learn, you know, how much over what period of time.
Michael 00:24:35 I think the other part of that learner engagement is under is starting to rediscover what people already know. We have a tendency in corporate learning to say, one size fits all learning, and we kind of forget what was on someone's resume or what they've are acquired organically. You know, over time, through time and experience. It's very difficult to say, how much is someone different? Because they've worked here for 10 years, it's hard to quantify, but we need to know. And the best way to do that is to go out and do those learner assessments say, Hey, you've been here for awhile. We think you need to learn this. How much do you think you already know? And what can you demonstrate? So we start you in the right place, maybe, you know, everything you already need to know, and they shouldn't accomplish. Maybe it's only 10% of what we thought we needed you to know.
Michael 00:25:23 So I think understanding the conditions of the learner and going back out and kind of getting reacquainted with your learners, employees, and what they already know and how they progress. I think that's going to make learning engagement, you know, much easier to achieve. And I think it'll take a lot of stress off for the learning and development professionals. I think right now, most learning and development professionals probably feel overwhelmed by the number of things that they think people need to know now. And so what I think people really need to focus on as a learning organization is whatever competencies and skills that are driven by the organization that you need to, you have to get across, whether they're hard or soft skills. What I would do is build a layer below that you know, of a learning curriculum that just focuses on learning agility. You know, the competencies that go with people, feeling like they can take their learning and go for longer periods of time before they have to learn again, you know, teaching people to take risks, be collaborative, ask questions, you know, get out there and do those, have those kinds of competencies that allow people to conceptualize and frame and stretch so that they can go for longer periods of time without learning something new.
Michael 00:26:39 And when they do need to learn something new, it's only incremental. You know, the being, if I already know how to mow the lawn, it's not a big stretch to trim the shrubs. You know, I can, I can stretch. And there's only a tiny amount more I need to learn. I think we've gotten to a point where we've made, you know, employees feel like every time something changes a tiny bit in that role or the organization chairman it's like new learning, new learning new event, you know, here, you got to know this, you got to know that. And people count, you know, are constantly feeling like how can I stretch? So we've made our learners somewhat risk averse, somewhat waiting, somewhat more anticipatory in terms of learning. And we've got to let people just kind of get out there and do it. And particularly with the modern learner and the modern generation of learners, you know, they're, they're self proclaiming that they already know a lot and just, you know, let me go, you know, give me some parameters.
Michael 00:27:35 So let me go. So I think we'll also meet the needs of, of Nexions too of saying, you know, I know a lot, and I've got a lot of confidence and let me go as far as it can. And if I need help, I'll tap you on the shoulder. So I think if we can make that shift, which kind of goes back to why self-paced learning will work, right. We can make that ship. It's going to benefit both the employee feeling like they're more confident, and it's also going to help the learning and development professionals to feel like this is not an overwhelming task of all the new things we have to teach people or train people on that people are pretty smart. They can go a long way. And if they run out of steam, they'll tap us on the shoulder and we'll give them a little bit more and they'll keep going. So I think learning agility has to be a new swim lane of competencies and skills is taught foundationally to whatever specific competencies and skills someone needs to know for their role.
Michelle BB 00:28:27 I like that a lot, Michael. Um, and I think that, you know, I think it's a great point, right? Because we often talk about personalized journeys, but at the same time, there's this sense that, you know, people want to be able to stretch a little bit and, and sort of feel their way and then go back and say, okay, what do I need to learn? Right. I, so I think that's, I think that's great guidance. Um, we're kind of coming to the end, um, which, you know, this has gone by so quickly, but there is one question it's actually a three-part question that I ask all of my guests. So I'm hoping that, um, you will humor me here. Um, but you know, one of the things that we've found as we've talked to people is that the pandemic look it's allowed us to, to maybe look at things a little bit differently, um, shape our perspective, shift our perspective, take up a new hobby. And I've asked all my guests this, so a three parter, um, what have you started doing since the onset of the pandemic, but yet you just didn't before, what have you stopped doing? And you're grateful for doing so, and then the third is, as we continue to move into this next phase, what is something you're gonna take with you continue to do that you might not have done before? So it's a start, a stop and a continue
Michael 00:29:47 The star part. And that probably speak for a lot of people. And we say, this is just, you know, increasing that and, and framing into a new level of mindfulness for patients. I definitely see that, you know, we had, uh, before all of this, you know, everyone, it's got that overachiever go, go, go type of approach. And I think to get things done going forward, at least for the foreseeable future, it's more about an, uh, slowing down and investing more time because people need the time. They need more time to understand, comprehend, get, get safe with things, you know, be comfortable with things. And I think we also have to significantly increase their mindfulness to like our self-awareness and approach, especially in this digital environment, you know, how we come across with voice tone visualization, you know, we, we can't close that gap anymore. Like we used to be able to, so that that's definitely, uh, has been top of mind.
Michael 00:30:52 And then patients, I think, you know, we, we have a tendency with, with all organizational settings is, uh, you know, we wanna, we just gotta keep driving, driving and striving, you know, driving plus driving equals thriving. You know, we're all taught to achieve goals, set goals, get there. And I think right now it's more about the journey than the destination. And that's been a big shift is, uh, how do we get there is, is, is more important right now. And it was funny. I had a undergraduate degree was in chemistry and biology. And I remember my organic chemistry professor announced before our first exam. He said to us, no matter what you do, if you get all the right answers and you don't show your work, you're going to fail because I'm only going to give you two points for the right answer, but it'll give you eight points to show me how you got there, even if you get the wrong answer. And so, you know, that always stuck with me in my journey is that, you know, we got to focus on the, how not the what, and I think people really need to feel that so they can practice in a safe environment, try fail, maybe not get it right. And I think we all have to be in that frame of mind with folks. So I think that's really going into high gear for me.
Michelle BB 00:32:09 So stopped, what have you stopped doing, drinking too much coffee?
Michael 00:32:17 You know, it, it, I am like an espresso fanatic. And so, uh, one of the things I realized is to be more mindful and, and be more patient, you know, you gotta, you gotta slow down on the, on the, on the caffeine. So that is definitely something I realized that I was drinking a lot of caffeine. So kind of cut back on that for sure. Yeah. Don't ask me about my caffeine
Michelle BB 00:32:40 Consumption. I think it's actually gone up. And so then just lastly, what are, what is something that you've started doing that you're going to take with you? What are you going to continue to do that you hadn't done before?
Michael 00:32:49 You know, it, it's funny, it's, it's kind of reinventing the cadence of, of the day, you know, having more time to be thoughtful and mindful more time to meditate, more time to be, to reinvigorate on your level of presence. I'm sure you're the same way. You know, you get into this ruling from one thing to a next and the pandemic has forced us all to kind of have to build in a different kind of cadence. And I think it's, I think it's a healthy one. And I think over time it's a more productive one. So definitely going to stick with that. And our team is going to stick with that as well. And it's kind of an old Neo saying you can't run a marathon at a sprinter's pace. And, and I think staying with that, I think would be a really solid idea going forward. And I think, uh, I think that that's what we're all going to have to do.
Michelle BB 00:33:39 I love that. I love that we have to really look at the cadence of our day and how it's shifted. And, you know, I think there are probably a lot of things that we've started doing in our days that I certainly wouldn't want to give up. And it sounds like you wouldn't either. Um, Michael, just as we, as we close out this episode, how can listeners get a copy of this amazing research that you shared with us and where should they go?
Michael 00:34:07 Oh, well, uh, they can certainly reach out to you directly, or they can reach out to me directly at Michael dot Rochelle, uh, Brandon hall.com. And I'll be more than happy to send along, uh, uh, you know, a slide deck of all of our, of all of our findings.
Michelle BB 00:34:23 That's excellent. And we'll put that in the writeup for the edge podcast. So when people go to see that when, when people go to click on the, on the link, they'll be able to see that. Um, and as I started in my last podcast, I do want to share with listeners what I'm currently learning. Cause I think it's something that I've started doing more, um, is learning a little bit more or taking more time for learning. Um, and it's entirely apropos because I just completed a course in earned my digital badge in fostering mentoring relationships. Something I believe is critical to creating a more inviting and inclusive workplace for employees. So Michael, thank you so much for taking the time to be with us on the edge podcast and to our, and to our listeners. Thank you for tuning into this. And every episode as we unleash our edge together on behalf of the entire Skillsoft team, we encourage you to keep learning, keep growing and in light of this conversation today, reflecting upon your hard work, um, while applying all that you've learned both now and in the future, I'm Michelle BB, this is the edge.
About Our Guest
Michael Rochelle is a principal and Chief Strategy Officer of Brandon Hall Group where he oversees consulting, strategic services and advisory support for the firm’s members. Michael is also one of the firm’s principal analysts covering learning, talent, sales and marketing and executive management. Over 30 years’ experience in commercial and operational strategy and execution, including human resources, information technologies, sales, marketing, business development, strategic and financial planning, program management and business operations in Fortune 500 and venture-backed start-up organizations.
About Our Host
As Chief Marketing Officer, Michelle leads a global marketing organization, focused on transforming today’s workforce for tomorrow’s economy. Since joining the company, she has been responsible for Skillsoft’s global marketing strategy, which includes generating awareness, driving preference, and building affinity for Skillsoft. Additionally – and perhaps most importantly – Michelle serves as the company's brand evangelist, helping to build a vibrant community of passionate learners.
With more than 25 years of marketing, branding, and strategy experience, Michelle has made it her personal mission to support the advancement of women in business. Prior to Skillsoft, she served as Chief Marketing Officer of IBM Watson, where she was instrumental in developing the first “Women Leaders in AI” program, which honors women who put AI to work across industries and around the globe. She also served as the global head of marketing for The Weather Company, an IBM Business, helping companies understand how to anticipate, plan for, and ultimately make better decisions – with greater confidence – in the face of weather.
Michelle is a prolific speaker on a range of topics, including the war for talent, digital transformation, and marketing in a post-pandemic world. She covers these topics and more as the host of Skillsoft's podcast, The Edge, now in its second season. She has authored countless papers covering a range of business and marketing topics, was at the center of Skillsoft’s leadership role in DEI through free “Leadercamps,” and has taught two Percipio courses on the Pink Pandemic and Public Speaking.
Michelle is also a founding member of CMO Huddles, a group dedicated to bringing together and empowering highly effective B2B CMOs to share, care, and dare each other to greatness. Michelle holds a Master’s degree from Simmons University and sits on the pro side of the Oxford comma debate.