What does E-Learning Need from Your Management Team?

Employees take their cues from management.

Managers will need to keep realistic expectations, pro- vide leadership, provide support, and manage the change that e-learning will bring to your company.

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Your company’s management needs to give e-learning what it gives everything else: leadership and support. The success of e- learning in your company rests on the management team, just like the success of everything else in your business Here’s a quick list of what’s needed from your management team:

  1. Realistic expectations. Keep expectations at a reasonable level. Just because the learning is now being delivered over the Internet doesn’t mean that the learning problem is “solved.” Learning will still take time and effort by each individual student.
  2. Leadership. Managers should be leading the way with e-learning. What’s not useful is half-hearted communication based on an incomplete understanding of what’s going on. Perhaps the most important thing your management team can do is fully understand what your e-learning initiative really does. And the best way to do that is to take a few e-learning courses and see what it feels like. (I don’t mean just look at a five-minute demo, but actually take some of the courses.)
  3. Support. Experience shows that some managers will think that e-learning enables students to take courses in no time at all since the students aren’t going off to class. Furthermore, some e-learners will need management encouragement to keep up their motivation in relative isolation instead of being swept along with the pace of a face-to-face class.
  4. Willingness to manage change. Depending on how much training your company does, e-learning has the potential to make a significant change to your company’s culture. As a general rule, however, most people don’t like to change. If you don’t man- age change, it can spin out of control. This is the same as any- thing you change in your business.