Is your L&D strategy missing the mark?

by John Hilton05 Oct 2017
What is the single most important investment that companies can make? Employee development, according to Anthony Mitchell, chief potential officer at Bendelta.

However, most Australian companies are still approaching L&D in a way that is “unscientific and largely a waste of time and money”, said Mitchell.

According to new research by Bendelta, 32% of senior leaders believed that a typical employee in their organisation worked less than half of their full potential on a given day, with less than 1% of respondents stating that a typical employee worked at full capacity (90-100%).

Moreover, 29% of senior leaders stated that they themselves performed at less than 40% of their full potential on a given day, when compared with their most effective performance over the past year.

The research looked at the performance of more than 500 senior business leaders and their teams, finding that the majority of organisations are not prepared to successfully compete in today’s cyber-physical age.

The research also found:
  • 78% of respondents run development programs with little idea of what world-class in that capability looks like, with only 5% having a very clear view.
  • 74% give participants either no feedback on how they are improving over the course of the program, or limit this to sporadic, delayed feedback.
  • 58% fail to make use of new technologies that are now available for development.
  • 75% of companies don’t know if the programs actually work and don’t collect information that improves the program’s effectiveness in developing capability.
“Success in the cyber-physical age not only relies on the human potential of organisations, but also the ability to create, inculcate or leverage exponential technologies, and our research shows a real risk for Australian businesses to be obsoleted or disintermediated.” said Mitchell.

“In the cyber-physical age, organisations must spend far less of their time internally focused and ensure that employees feel liberated to use their judgement to delight customers, be creative and take initiative.

The good news, said Mitchell, is that with the right methods, anyone can develop capabilities that reflect world-class standards and the potential this has for organisational L&D is phenomenal.

When senior leaders were asked to compare their organisational architecture with the models and practices of world-class organisations, such as Google, Amazon or Atlassian, the majority of respondents stated that their organisation was mediocre or worse when it comes to fostering joined-up collaboration (75%) and agile responses (68%).

The research was undertaken to prepare for Bendelta’s inaugural global leadership conference in Sydney on 8 November.

The conference focuses on redesigning organisations and leaders for the cyber-physical age.


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