Corporate Learning Experience and working out at the gym have a few things in common. Remember the first time you went to the gym and picked up dumbbells? I can share with you what happened to me. I went to the weight rack and picked up one of the heaviest dumbbells, naively overestimating my strength. After three repetitions, I realized that this is too heavy for me. Then I went to the lighter segment of the dumbbell rack and picked up the dumbbells.

That was too easy for me, and I did not even feel I was lifting anything. Then finally, after giving a few dumbbells a try, I lifted the one which was optimally challenging me. The first two sets were challenging, and gradually on the third set, it was a task to complete. But I genuinely enjoyed the challenge and lifting that weight. After that day, I slowly started lifting heavier and felt more accomplished in my fitness journey.

Now let me take you away from the gym and give you a peep into a training room at the workplace. You, as an LnD leader, will find two sets of employees during a training workshop :

  1. The ones who are checking their phones constantly and are disengaged.
  2. The ones who enjoy the training session and are thoroughly engaged.

Now when you see this scenario, multiple thoughts pass through your mind.

  1. These employees don’t care about learning
  2. The content seems boring
  3. Maybe they have had a heavy lunch
  4. LnD Job sucks. 

But before these thoughts pass by your mind, we need to ask ourselves two simple questions :

Is this too easy for them?

Is this too hard for them?

Even if one of the answers is yes, then we are losing the plot! The answer should be correct in the middle, not too easy and not hard for them. The answer is the Goldilocks Principle of Motivation.

Motivation to achieve something is at the highest when a task either not too easy or too complex but optimally challenging. This kind of motivation gets the best results out of people and keeps the person focused on completing the task and seeking more challenges.

Goldilock Zone

The Goldilock Zone where the learning challenge is just right

Not let us take this Goldilocks principle and attach it to our corporate learning context. With these three proven techniques, one can achieve higher learning completion rates and make the employee want more!

1. Focus Learning Groups :

Clustering employees according to their IDP, existing Skillsets, and learning interests is a great way to set precedence towards unlocking the Goldilocks principle. A great way to identify these focus learning groups is by having a Skill Inventory handy. A skill inventory of your employees is a list of all the skills your employees possess and the ones they want to learn. By having this, you can put folks with similar expertise in a learning environment.

This group can set expectations, assess their current knowledge depth and then curate a slightly challenging learning module for them accordingly. This initiative will increase enthusiasm for them to achieve that learning task, but they can feel that they are sailing in the same boat and the same direction. This practice significantly increases their chances of completing their learning chances. Here you can learn how BHyve is helping corporations to create their Skill inventory.

2. Gamifying the Corporate Learning experience

Most video games use this principle to retain users onto their games. If the game is too easy, they find it boring, and if it is challenging, they find it unengaging. Similarly, if the learning paths and IDP are gamified, the employee is always seeking the immediate tasks, which can gradually increase difficulty. This gamified learning can equip the employee with the essential education, and he would be much more eager to take further challenges as his knowledge progresses. 

Gamifying his experience can also help him/ her ensure that he knows at what skill level he is and can now start unlocking the newer prospects in his learning journey.  

With BHyve, corporations can gamify their learning experiences by attributing points for every collaborative learning experience the employee participates.

3. Continuous Feedback Loop :

The tragedy of the goldilocks principle is that it works in the second attempt. This first attempt should be a conscious misfire to understand which part of the learner’s spectrum is on; The difficult one or the easy one. The learner should have sufficient trust in you, as an LnD Manager, as this misfire is to assess the level of complexity he/she is comfortable with. Post this assessment, a misfire can set the goldilocks point, and the learning manager can deliver the optimally challenging learning tasks.

During this entire exercise, the learner and the learning manager should establish a continuous loop. Think of it as a trainer at your gym who progressively increases your weight while exercising. This mechanism is done by taking feedback from you and helping you go from one level to the next.

A thorough understanding of your employee capabilities and to what extent you can stretch them is the hallmark of a fantastic learning manager. This continuous loop of feedback of the employee’s learning experience can foster a great understanding of the complexity and reception of the initiatives. Plus, the relationship between you and the stakeholders is enhanced and making your inbox a safe place to provide unadulterated feedback.

With a simple fairy tale where Goldilocks tried the hot porridge, the cold porridge, and the optimally warm porridge, we all know which one did she end up choosing. The Goldilocks principle is widely used in understanding intrinsic motivation. This theory can be easily borrowed by learning managers to deliver engaging and challenging learning tasks. Smart and Leaders who have used have cracked this technique have achieved higher learning completion rate, higher learning ownership and 

At BHyve, we are teaming with Learning and Development Leaders to create engaging learning experiences. By creating gamified peer learning experiences, BHyve can build bridges between the learning goals and the employees. The analytics provided can find how engaged and committed to their learning goals and how you can effectively intervene with actionable insights. 

Please book an appointment with our organizational psychologist to understand how gamified peer learning can help you achieve your learning goals.