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Last updated: 05.04.18

Benefits of using digital learning for your senior executive leadership and management training

For any organisation to be successful, it is vital that there is a strong and talented senior leadership team. Motivational leaders: increase employee engagement, help to retain top talent and nurture future leaders who will support succession planning. Traditionally, leadership training for senior staff is conducted face-to-face in a conference room along with flip charts and copious amounts of coffee – but is this the only way?

Face-to-face leadership training is expensive and notoriously difficult to fit in with busy schedules. We all know how busy senior leaders are, so aligning diaries is a fairly impossible task the majority of the time. Furthermore, these face-to-face sessions are expensive. Not only is there the cost of the session, venue hire, travel and possibly accommodation, but there is the opportunity cost of having your senior staff all out of the office at once.

How can digital resources help?

  1. Flexibility. The use of digital resources to support leadership and management training provides much greater flexibility, allowing learners to decide when, where and how they access their learning. Many learners actually prefer to learn in the comfort of their own home or office, and at their own pace, without the pressure of keeping up with others in the classroom.
  2. Information retention. Digital resources also help to combat knowledge attrition. It is scientifically proven that without reinforcement and application, humans begin to lose newly gained knowledge at a rapid pace. Digital resources allow learners to access ‘just in time’ information which helps to reinforce knowledge and is a major advantage over face-to-face delivery methods. They can also double up as refresher resources to help support key knowledge from the modules long after the initial training has been completed.
  3. Cost efficiency. Leadership and management training has come a long way in the past decade but its importance to an organisation’s success has remained the same. The use of digital resources as an alternative to face-to-face training sessions provides a more cost effective and flexible approach, allowing time poor senior leaders to access content at a time and place that works for them.

Are there any downsides?

A possible downside to using purely digital content is that the opportunity for social interaction and discussion is lost. While this is certainly a valid concern, an increase in the reach and usability of social media alongside internal discussion platforms and forums help to combat this. In addition, if digital content is hosted on a learning management system then this is a fantastic way to collaborate.

However, if you still feel that face-to-face collaboration is pivotal to the success of your programme, it might be worth looking at a blended learning approach. In this instance, digital resources can be used to impart the knowledge content before a face-to-face discussion around application and relevance for your specific context. If you have any questions on the topic of leadership and management, please don’t hesitate to contact Cameron Glennon at Virtual College at who would be more than happy to help.