Micro-learning, the practice of delivering bite-sized chunks of information in short, focused sessions, is quickly becoming a popular method for employee training and development.
And there's a good reason for this - research shows that micro-learning can lead to improved retention and application of information, as well as increased engagement and motivation.
So should every company consider implementing a micro-learning program for their employees? There are a lot of benefits. Here are few that stand out to me:
Increased retention. According to a study by the University of California, Los Angeles, people who engage in micro-learning retain information up to 29% better than those who learn through traditional methods. This is because micro-learning sessions are focused on a specific topic, allowing employees to fully absorb and understand the information being presented.
Increased engagement and motivation. Micro-learning sessions are shorter and more interactive than traditional training methods (think of your classic hour-long, boring continued education credit course). Micro-learning sessions typically see much higher engagement because participation is so easy. We have seen this in our numbers when comparing our micro-learning initiative vs. traditional training, but more on that later.
Increased motivation. A study by the American Society for Training and Development found that employees who participated in micro-learning were three times more likely to report feeling motivated to learn than those who did not. These sessions generate great momentum. They are light and easy, but they are valuable and the learner gets a deserved feeling of accomplishment. This builds a positive connection between the learning and the entity producing the learning and it builds momentum for the learner to seek more knowledge.
Cost-effectiveness. Micro-learning can be less expensive than traditional training methods, as it requires fewer resources and less time to implement. A study by the International Journal of Emerging Technologies in Learning found that micro-learning can be up to 60% more cost-effective than traditional training methods. Because of the quick nature, learners are not expecting the same production level as a full-day seminar or an hour-long broadcast. Source expertise from your knowledgeable employees and a partner and ask them to record on their phone or webcam. Use technology to make it simple. Shameless plug, MarketScale Studio was built exactly for creating community-generated content like this and in the most efficient way possible.
Flexibility. Micro-learning sessions can be delivered in a variety of formats, including videos, podcasts, and interactive quizzes, which allows for flexibility in terms of how you prefer to create and gives learners a variety of educational content. This can be especially beneficial for companies with remote or geographically dispersed employees.
First-hand experience with micro-learning
Every day our full team watches a 1-minute educational video on a specific topic that is relevant to our business and completes a short 1-3 question quiz on what was covered. It is quick and easy both to produce and to complete as a learner. While I appreciate the hyper-efficiency of the system (yes a well-oiled machine is a beautiful thing in its own right), the thing that I am most amazed by is that people have fun doing it!
"People have fun doing their corporate education." Queue the eye rolls, but before you close this tab hear why this isn't BS.
People enjoy doing it because we use all community-generated content. Every morning there is a different teacher from our community and people enjoy seeing their friends and co-worker being featured as that morning's teacher. It then takes on a deeper value as the teacher shares knowledge about the topic. You see someone you know dropping some knowledge about a topic they care about, you learn something, you prove you know it in a low-stakes and easy quiz, you get a 100% and you feel good about yourself. It is a good experience and the information sticks with you.
By encouraging members of our business and our wider community to record short, one-minute videos on relevant topics, we all learn from our peers and deepen our knowledge of the business or the business world. This makes us stronger as a whole.
Micro-learning is a powerful tool for training and development. It can lead to improved retention and application of information, increased engagement and motivation, cost-effectiveness, and flexibility. By incorporating community-generated content into the program, companies can make micro-learning even more fun, effective, and valuable for their employees.