SumTotal Blog

Perspectives 2018: The Age of Learning On-Demand



Instant gratification takes too long.”  — Carrie Fisher

I love that we live in an age where almost everything is available on demand. The idea that we are still restricting learning opportunities makes absolutely no sense. We know that employees want to access knowledge when they need it and not at some pre-appointed date that may or may not be convenient or help in the completion of current tasks.

It’s why we developed Percipio ELSA, our new frictionless learning browser plugin, which brings all the power  of Percipio to the learner, right where they are and when they need it.


This shift from “taking” training to “seeking” information is now the driving force behind the delivery of learning and the time is ripe for our industry to explore what this metamorphosis means for HR, for L&D and organizations at large.

Perspectives, our annual conference, is the ideal venue for this conversation. And as this is our 19th Perspectives conference, we’ve gathered together a host of leading experts to ensure this subject gets the attention it warrants. We want everyone who attends to leave with both a deep understanding of the seismic shifts happening within our industry and importantly equipped with the knowledge to thrive and excel in this new, and exciting, world.

Leading the way is Josh Bersin, principal and founder of Bersin by Deloitte, and a vocal advocate of on-demand learning, of giving people what they need to learn, perform, and grow on the job. His keynote on “Learning in the Flow of Work” will show how micro-learning, macro-learning, and adaptive learning have come together to make learning in the flow of work really happen for an organization.

Andy Cunningham, author Get to Aha!: Discover Your Positioning DNA and Dominate Your Competition, founder and president of the Cunningham Collective, will address the importance of understanding positioning to make strategic decisions on branding, messaging and corporate values in her presentation, “What’s Your Positioning DNA? What Does it Tell You About Your Company, Your Positioning and Your Success?”

Wendy Sachs, author of Fearless and Free: How Smart Women Pivot and Relaunch Their Careers, will give us some practical guidance and lessons and teach us how to redefine our skills and our roles in the current climate of market and organizational change.

Speaking of organizational change, recent research suggests that Employee Experience is slowly replacing Employee Engagement, and we see it as part of our duty to enable our customers to facilitate this change within their organizations. Many of our breakout sessions will focus on dealing with how to map out this journey – from talent acquisition to onboarding – and how to do this in a way that aligns with employee expectations.

Once a new employee is hired, how then can you guarantee a positive employee experience? Partly through an active and robust culture of compliance and partly through leaders. This is why leadership development is now just huge and why we are reinventing how to conduct it. The traditional setup whereby a select few are given leadership training on a three day facilitated offsite, is no longer relevant. Today we must provide for the democratization of leadership – everyone, regardless of level should have access to leadership training to make them more effective as a manager. Everyone must be able to lead a cross-functional group for a specific length of time, and we need to give people the training so they can succeed. We need to ensure that leaders, at all levels of the organization, are prepped.

Perspectives is a unique event bringing together people from every facet of an organization; it isn’t just for L&D professionals – it is now important that everyone within an organization is aware and informed about our industry and what major trends they can expect to see in the coming months. The collective levels of experience, expertize and skills in any one room is reason alone to attend. Nothing beats hearing how others have dealt with a challenge and found a working solution.

Perspectives is a global event, so in May we will host shorter versions in the UK, India, and Australia. I’m personally very excited that when we are in Sydney, Code like a Girl founders Ally Watson and Vanessa Doake will speak about involving women in STEM. Rajeev Peshawaria, author of Open Source Leadership, will also keynote. As well as being a best-selling author, Rajeev has served as the Chief Learning Officer of both Coca-Cola and Morgan Stanley.

The next few months are busy, and while I’m not a huge fan of airports or long flights, I am looking forward to meeting customers from all over the world and checking in with each as we all strive to succeed in these instantly gratifying times.


Leave a reply: