Guide: Create an employee-to-employee learning program

Define your learning goals

What are your goals for learning in your organization? What do you hope to achieve by launching an employee-to-employee learning program? These are important questions to ask at the start. The goal at Google is to provide the right learning to the right people at the right time. For g2g, this means focusing efforts on providing high quality learning experiences at scale through community-driven initiatives.

This goal is anchored on three core beliefs:

  • All employees have the right to learn, regardless of location, role, tenure or level in the organization.
  • Learning is the responsibility of the entire company, not just the Learning & Development team.
  • Trust that employees are smart, capable and motivated — they have the capacity to grow Google’s learning culture.

Make sure your org size can support an employee-to-employee program. While empowering employees to teach and learn from each other can offer tremendous benefits, it may also be impractical given the size of your organization. There is a cost to selecting, supporting, and training employee facilitators. Take time to do an analysis to determine your setup and operating costs and comparing that to what it would cost to provide the same training via other means (e.g., vendors or full time staff).

Make sure the content can be appropriately delivered by a peer. If you’re trying to teach highly specialized content, content aimed at your most senior leaders, or content that could be very sensitive, consider having a professional deliver that content. You don’t want to setup an employee facilitator to fail by giving them an impossible task.

Remember that not all learning happens in a classroom with a single teacher in front of multiple students. So even if a full employee-to-employee learning program doesn’t make sense for your organization, consider the many other ways your employees can help one another learn. One on one mentoring programs can be incredibly powerful or having employees hold open office hours can be an easy way for expertise to be shared.

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