Want a Thriving Peer Learning Program to Increase Staff Capacity? Here are our Best Strategies.
Peer learning groups (also known as communities of practice, learning collaboratives, and more) are becoming increasingly popular with conscious companies and nonprofit organizations. The groups help staff members leverage knowledge, share promising practices, exchange useful tools and strategies, and increase everyone’s capacity to do great work.
And starting or managing a peer learning program is a deceptively complex endeavor.
At a recent conference at 1440 Multiversity, I stood on the veranda and chatted with a woman involved in special needs education for teachers. She had been struggling to manage a peer learning program for the teachers in her school district. Participation was low and few people were sharing the best practices she had hoped for.
“It’s hard when you’re first starting out with managing a peer learning team,” I reflected. “You’d think that it would be enough to just get people in a room together to talk about a subject they’re passionate about. But then you find out how human nature affects things. People are shy or nervous and don’t really understand what they’re supposed to be talking about. They clam up.”
“That’s exactly what’s been going on with the teachers!” she exclaimed. “I didn’t think it would be so hard to get them to open up.”
Over the years, we’ve discovered several strategies to significantly accelerate peer learning and make your program thrive rather than just squeak by. If you want to know how to really get what you need out of your organization’s peer learning program, read our article at Chief Learning Officer Magazine, “9 Strategies to Make Your Peer Learning Program Thrive.”
What’s on your mind about starting or managing a peer learning program? We’d love to share our best strategies with you. Leave a comment, or contact us for more information about your particular situation.