water drop representing untapped L&D strategies
Training & Learning

9 Untapped Learning and Development Strategies Your Companies Should Try

Is your company thinking about learning and development all wrong?

Learning and development was one of the top 4 HR investments in 2023. Yet according to another study, 84% of employees feel that ‘reluctance by managers to encourage new ways of learning and working’ are holding L&D teams back.

So, how can companies improve their approach, and develop programs that employees and managers will embrace?

In this post, we’ll explore some out-of-the-box learning and development strategies that could help unlock your team's growth.


Why a robust L&D tech stack is non-negotiable

What’s holding your learning and development strategy back?

Before you consider new learning and development strategies, it’s worthwhile trying to fully understand what it is that’s not working in your current efforts.

There are any number of things that cause L&D to fail at companies. As a simple exercise, ask your team the following questions:

  • Are we teaching the right things?
  • Do we have the right people teaching them? 
  • Are we delivering them in the best way for our employees to consume?
  • Are our learning materials truly engaging?
  • What are we doing to motivate our employees (and mentors) to participate?

The answers might help surface pain points in different parts of your overall process.

9 L&D Strategies Your Company Should Consider

Once you understand what’s stopping your L&D strategy from being successful, you can start to look at unique ways to change things up. 

Depending on your challenges, this could mean anything from implementing more user-friendly formats and delivery methods, to rethinking your learning philosophy, to simply trying something a bit more creative and fun.

To help you along the way, here’s a few ideas which could help freshen up your approach in different areas.

1. Collaborative learning

The first thing you might want to rethink about your L&D strategy is its overall structure. Are you still running top-down, executive and manager-led programs where leaders set the agenda?

More and more companies are having success by embracing a collaborative learning approach, where employees at all levels work together to share knowledge with each other. This can mean anything from younger employees teaching older staff new technologies, to managers working across departments, and everything in between. It’s a chance to leverage the full power of your entire team’s skill set, and watch them help each other grow. 

2. AI-based learning and development

Artificial intelligence is touching almost every area of the workplace these days, and learning and development has been no exception.

While some L&D content created by AI can be generic, companies like 360Learning are using generative learning technology to help companies to create unique, tailored experiences for their employees. You can quickly build in-house courses from your internal materials, and even create curated learning paths for individual team members.

If you’ve been struggling to create unique materials and training paths that fit your needs, AI can make the entire process a whole lot easier.

3. Personalized learning paths

Further to the previous point, more personalized learning paths could be just the shot in the arm your L&D strategy needs if you’ve been struggling to make it impactful.

A lot of companies still take a somewhat one-size-fits-all approach to training, developing standardized courses and materials to serve their entire employee base. But there is a growing realization that not every employee is starting from the same place in terms of their knowledge and skill sets.

Developing personalized learning paths, whether through AI or other methods, allows companies to meet employees where they are, and create plans for their development that better align with their existing skills gaps, as well as their personal career goals.

4. Adjacent skills

How great would it be for your marketers to be trained in sales? Or for your product developers to understand marketing? Or your HR team to know more about business development?

A lot of learning and development strategies primarily focus on developing employees’ skills in their own roles, but furthering their understanding of the roles of the people they work closely with can have untold benefits for your business, and for their own professional development. As you develop L&D pathways, putting some focus on adjacent skills could really pay off. 

5. Life skills training

Another thing that you may not currently be covering in your L&D strategy is skills that employees can benefit from outside of work.

This could mean anything from financial literacy skills, to wellness and personal care education, to giving them time to learn a new hobby. 

Employees will appreciate that you’re offering them the chance to improve their quality of life, and doing so will also help them be more present and focused when they are on the clock. As more and more employers realize the value of allowing employees to bring their whole selves to work, adopting the same mindset in your L&D seems natural.

6. Learning through comedy

Looking for something a bit more off the beaten track? Many companies (including my own company Guusto) have found improv comedy to be a fun way to help employees develop certain skills. 

Through guided exercises and games, employees can become better communicators, level up their teamwork skills, and unlock new creative problem-solving techniques. The fact that the sessions can be a lot of fun can make them more memorable for employees, and also create a pressure-free atmosphere where they can step out of their comfort zone a bit more.

7. Employee recognition

Most of the previous suggestions in this post have covered different learning approaches and ideas, but what if your problem is less about your courses themselves and more about encouraging employees to take them in the first place?

If so, employee recognition can be an excellent way to drive participation in your learning and development programs, and incentivize employees to stick with them. 

You can offer rewards and recognition to employees who utilize their L&D stipends, sign up for internal courses, or anything else to invest in themselves. As they progress in their learnings, you can reward them for acquiring new skills, obtaining new qualifications, or reaching certain milestones in your L&D program.

If you’re adopting a collaborative learning approach, it’s also a great idea to recognize those on your team who are mentoring, teaching, and sharing their skills with others. Again, this is a great way to motivate your people to take time out of their busy schedules to help upskill your team.

8. Gamified learning

Gamifying learning is not a new idea, but it is another way to supercharge your L&D strategy and drive more participation and engagement.

Using games, quizzes, and other fun activities in your courses can make them less of a slog for your team, and also help them to understand complex concepts by applying them in more practical ways.

Gamification can also dovetail nicely with using employee recognition in learning and development, as we suggested in the previous section. You can offer rewards for employees in your games and challenges as an extra bonus, and to encourage a little healthy competition.

9. Mobile learning

Does your learning and development strategy still revolve around computer-based or in-person learning? Go mobile!

A lot of companies have success by creating mobile learning offerings for employees. Mobile learning allows them to learn on the go, making it easier to find time to complete training, and is also ideal for deskless workers in fields like retail and sales. 

Creating a learning and development strategy that fits your needs

Which of these L&D strategies are effective for you will largely depend on your business, its challenges and needs, and where you are currently at on learning and development journey. Remember, your strategy should fit your team rather than the other way around.

If you want an L&D platform that gives you the flexibility to create the right programs for your company, consider 360Learning’s solution, which offers everything from AI to mobile training and beyond, all in one collaborative learning software.


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