When people think of learning, they often focus on knowledge acquisition. Furthering a person’s understanding of a topic by exposing them to more about it on an intellectual level is the foundation of many classic training approaches, and with good reason, as it can be quite effective.
The issue is, knowledge isn’t always the issue. Figuring out how to apply what you know often takes practice, something that a purely information-sharing-driven approach often can’t provide.
As a result, many companies are turning toward experiential learning to develop their teams. If you are wondering how experiential learning can boost your workforce, here’s what you need to know.
What Is Experiential Learning?
In the simplest sense, experiential learning is a hands-on approach to skill development. Instead of learning about a topic through reading or lectures, the focus is on learning by doing. Practical application is at the center of the experience, as well as the ability to practice putting newly added skills into action.
While experiential learning is more common when it comes to technical skills, it can also be used for soft skill development. For example, through simulation training, professionals can figure out how to navigate complex scenarios involving leadership, communication, empathy, and other valuable traits.
The Benefits of Experiential Learning
Experiential learning focuses on the practical development of key skills. It means exploring a topic beyond purely intellectual understanding, ensuring learners can put new knowledge to work for them in a functional way.
The benefits also go further. When part of simulation training, learners have the ability to thoroughly explore new ideas in a safe environment. This gives them a platform for increasing their comfort level without any risk, as mistakes aren’t happening in the “real world.” As they hone their capabilities, their confidence level rises. Then, when they do have to use their skills in the real world, they’ll be able to do so without hesitancy.
Experiential learning also gets students comfortable with uncertainty. It embraces the idea of exploring the unknown instead of simply reading or listening about it. They’ll learn how to navigate challenges with greater ease, as that’s a fundamental part of this learning paradigm.
It also encourages reflection. Learners often need to examine their missteps along the way, allowing them to discover how they can adjust their mindset or approach to increase their odds of success next time.
Finally, experiential learning can encourage creativity, innovation, and self-expression. Since “action” is a core part of the experience, learners can make their own choices, allowing them to see what works best for them.
Are You Ready to Add Experiential Learning to Your Training Program?
Ultimately, experiential learning has a lot to offer. If you need support from L&D professionals to incorporate it into your training program, then the team at Clarity Consultants wants to hear from you. With almost 30 years of experience in the L&D field, Clarity has the expertise you need to succeed. Plus, if you need new L&D team members, Clarity can act as your candidate search ally, connecting you with top talent at just the right moment.
If you want to partner with leading L&D professionals who can help you add experiential learning to your training strategy, Clarity Consultants is here. Contact us today.