11 companies with great L&D opportunities (part two)
After sharing our original list of 10 companies with great learning and development programs, we wanted to keep the recognition going. Learning and development programs can be presented as lunch and learn's, training sessions, online courses, and many opportunities in between. Whatever their form, these programs demonstrate a commitment to providing learning and development for employees.
Our list is a great place to start if you're seeking inspiration for a new learning and development program. We've featured ten more companies that have successfully provided learning and development for their employees.
11 companies with great L&D opportunities
Acquia’s culture inspires the team to give back more to employees so they can expand their learning and grow their careers. There are many opportunities for professional development – from their hands-on 100-Day Onboarding Journey for new hires, robust mentoring programs, classroom-based learning for leadership development, free Acquia Certification classes, and flipped classrooms for technical learning. All employees are encouraged to set quarterly development goals and work with their manager to hit them.
2. Adaptive Lab
Project work is designed around rapid-paced client delivery at London-based product and service design company Adaptive Lab. This company empowers teams to build learning and development into their everyday rhythm.
Investing in growing and developing the senior team, along with increased peer learning activities and regular feedback, drives and encourages coaching and mentoring across all disciplines and levels. Regular development conversations using bespoke tools like their Skills Matrix and team behaviors charter help individuals focus their efforts and progress toward current and future career goals. Team engagement surveys ensure all pieces come together to create a happy and high-performing team.
3. WhiteWave Foods
Training sessions at WhiteWave Foods are geared toward entire teams, not just individuals. WhiteWave's engagement survey results (including individual survey comments) showed that teams would benefit from training. Rather than only providing training to a few individuals, they opted to provide the training for the entire team.
zulily offers learning on the job through its fun, fast-paced, and ever-evolving business. Additionally, employees have access to over 400 online and in-person courses – including an 8-course program for managers to help make them more engaging and effective leaders. zulily also offers a job exchange and rotation programs to facilitate continued career development. One of zulily’s most popular programs is their monthly "zUniversity" series, where innovators and leaders from different industries are invited to speak to employees.
AdRoll recently rolled out an internal "Women in Leadership" program. If accepted to the program, women receive specific coaching, and training and are encouraged to pursue leadership opportunities. The goals of the program are to:
- Invest in female employees to help them grow
- Create a pipeline of strong female leaders at AdRoll
- Create a group of mentors to develop our female talent at AdRoll
- Push participants to grow as a leader, look at things differently, and work together to create a shared vision for their teams and AdRoll.
A Happiness Engineer (customer support representative) arranges for a different Automattician (employee) to host a monthly webinar focused on a different area of leadership. It’s called the "Developing Leadership" webinar series, and topics have included Leadership and Introversion, Developing Leadership: Agile Approaches, and Feedback and Recognition. An Internal “Code Academy” is hosted at their annual grand meetup. During this week-long event, they also participate in team building, socializing, project work, learning, and all-around fun.
7. Artisans Collaborative
Artisans Collaborative is cultivating a culture where the apprentice can draw from the combined experiences of the artisans. Their multi-year process of preparing apprentices under the guidance of an artisan is a radical approach to training designers, programmers, consultants, and entrepreneurs. The artisan method is simple: subject matter experts and artisans with years of deep understanding and rich experience teach the trade skills to fellow associate and apprentice artisans. Their vision is to provide long-term career opportunities to artisans by engaging them with challenging projects and encouraging them to do their most creative work every day.
Training and resources are available to all OakTree staff and volunteers on their internal website. Some employees create training videos based on their areas of expertise. For example, their Head of Campaigns created a community organizing module, which underpins all of the work OakTree does. They’ve also recently updated their inductions process, so new hires and volunteers know where to find this information and take control of their learning.
Galvanize offers a learning passport program, where each employee has up to $1000 per year to put towards a course that will help them learn and grow within their role. The benefit can be applied to industry conferences, professional courses, online classes, online learning subscriptions, professional books, magazines, certifications, and license examinations. As a result, Galvanize has created a database of what employees have used the money towards to generate ideas for other employees.
With four programs – Managing for success, Fit for success, How to manage up well, and Learn.Know.Bos – Bonobos is making learning and development core to their company’s culture. Bonobos Recruitment & People Relations Manager Kelsey Garske says Learn.Know.Bos was a well-received week-long learning and development initiative in which speakers ran classroom-style training sessions in a TED-like environment. Presentations included Hiring & Emotional Intelligence, Public Speaking, Retail Math, and Fireside Chats with industry leaders.
11. World Wildlife Fund
According to their Muse profile, lunchtime is for learning at WWF. Brown Bag Lunches are provided daily to encourage people to meet each other and share insights about current projects. Short presentations (about Amazonian wildlife, for instance) complement informal meetups. Brown bag lunches keep employees informed on exciting topics and spur new ideas for collaboration.