The World of Learning Conference, held at the Birmingham NEC on the 10th and 11th of October, brought together an array of professionals and experts from the Learning and Development (L&D) field.
The event was a dynamic platform that delved into the ever-evolving world of learning and its intersection with technology and innovation. I’ve collected a few of my insights and takeaways from my time at World of Learning.
Themes and objectivesThe conference revolved around several central themes, including the impact of artificial intelligence on L&D priorities, the link between skills development and learning, and the integration of performance frameworks with learning outcomes. These themes reflected the evolving landscape of learning and the challenges and opportunities faced by L&D professionals.
Key speakers and presenters
I was on stand much of the time but caught one session early on Wednesday that was a highlight - the discussion revolved around L&D's role in recruitment, retention, and reskilling. The session highlighted the importance of L&D teams' ability to gather insightful data and act on it rapidly. Our own session on Tuesday was well attended (you can check out a recording here) - a session on techniques related to skills mastery and career progression drew a packed audience, with standing room only and some insightful Q&A discussion followed us to the stand from attendees.
The follow-up whitepaper we shared was also valuable in providing clarity in how you can build a learning and development program linked to performance improvement and career progression.
Highlights and key takeaways
During the conference, several common themes emerged. L&D professionals are increasingly being tasked with creating content, curating it, managing relationships with Software as a Service (SaaS) platforms, predicting future learning needs, and overseeing various aspects of learning.
Many participants expressed concerns about the integration of multiple systems and the amount of manual effort required to make them work cohesively. The challenge lies in unifying the needs of learning, skills development, and performance management within a single, streamlined approach.
Networking and insights
One of the most valuable aspects of attending the World of Learning Conference was the opportunity to network with peers and colleagues. Engaging in discussions with fellow professionals allowed for the exchange of innovative ideas and insights. The event was a testament to the vibrant learning community, with brilliant innovations presented throughout the conference. It was also great to see some of our industry partners like Storytagger and iAM Learning!
Personal insights and key learnings
My personal takeaways from the conference revolve around the critical link between networking and learning's impact on performance. It became evident that the L&D landscape is rapidly changing, with professionals juggling numerous responsibilities. To navigate this evolving terrain effectively, it is essential to create a synergy between learning, skills development, and performance management.
The event provided a deep dive into the world of learning and the challenges faced by L&D professionals. As the industry continues to evolve, the conference served as a reminder of the importance of networking, innovation, and the seamless integration of various aspects of learning and development - in particular, skills, performance and learning coming together in one space.