How to Create a Culture of Learning to Cultivate a Growth Mindset

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15 minutes
Last updated:
January 14, 2022
Time to read:
15 minutes
Are you developing a learning culture at your organization? We discuss learning culture and ways you can incorporate it into your workplace.

Businesses need to adapt to current and new trends to serve their clients more efficiently. That means regular research and learning new concepts. On the other hand, we rarely take the time to look up words used in corporate settings, such as growth mindset and learning culture

They are hard to grasp even in such a specific context. A learning culture in an organization promotes consistent education to improve their roles and output. Unfortunately, adopting a learning culture isn’t as easy. There’s always something more urgent in our schedules, making it hard to learn during work.

It’s extremely unlikely that employees will still be productive at work and simultaneously attend training. The entire organization needs to be involved in the learning process, from executives to employees. You’ll also need a carefully planned structure and people to lead the campaign. 

We’ll take you through an in-depth analysis of learning culture, its challenges, and pointers on implementing it in your organization.

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What is A Learning Culture?

culture of learning at the desk

A learning culture involves an environment that places importance on and encourages new information and skills as a means of self-improvement. Employees are encouraged to keep pursuing and applying these new skills across the workplace.

A learning culture in an organization allows workers to gain additional expertise to serve their clients better. It also improves productivity thanks to the new skills and information.

Challenges Of Making Learning Happen At Work

Your Employees Are Reluctant to Participate

Change can be disruptive and upsetting at times. Some employees get a bit apprehensive at the thought of having to adapt to a new system, which is understandable. Some might even refuse to participate. 

The solution is to spark interest in the subject instead of randomly introducing the concept. We discover new and equally exciting perspectives when we open our minds to the prospect. The best way is to educate them about learning culture and what it entails. 

They’ll be more receptive when armed with information. 

There Aren’t Enough Resources To Encourage A Learning Culture

A learning culture requires necessary supportive materials such as books, journals, and magazines. A shortage of these resources can present a significant challenge to getting employees on board.

Resources can also mean the finances to channel towards the learning process. Companies without the necessary budget might find it challenging to promote a learning culture throughout the organization.

There Isn’t Enough Support

distrusting culture in the workplace

Some organizations might be structured in a way that prevents employees from embracing a culture of learning. Examples include:

  • Lack of enough personnel
  • Not enough Paid Time Off (PTO)
  • A lack of resources.

These factors make it difficult for employees to participate.

There’s Just Not Enough Time

Corporate settings are often hectic and fast-paced; meetings to attend, emails to respond to. Such an environment can make it challenging for workers to embrace a learning culture. 

They Don’t Know Where To Start

Another challenge to establishing a learning culture is not knowing where and what you need to begin. It’s often confusing when embarking on a new project. You need to understand how to apply the knowledge and the resources.

Executives and Key Stakeholders Aren’t Onboard

When implementing a major change to any organization, you need all members onboard. Not only do the employees need to understand and support the idea, but management and executives too.

Executives control the major operations and give the necessary backing for any new projects. A lack of endorsement from them when creating a learning culture could mean failure. 

A Lack of Expertise and Leadership

There must be people to spearhead the initiative for a learning culture to develop. You need experienced and qualified individuals to provide the knowledge to guide staff on how to adapt to the program.

The Advantages of a Learning Culture

Why develop a culture of learning -> support, keeping pace, improving employee engagement

How Does Culture Affect Learning?

Culture affects learning by influencing our study patterns. These beliefs shape how we perceive and interpret information. Thus, workplaces must adopt values and beliefs that promote learning.

It Fosters Innovation

A learning culture promotes innovation, encouraging employees to be creative when coming up with strategies. It lessens the hurt of failure, allowing individuals to learn from their mistakes. It’s an excellent way to teach employees adaptability and improvisation.

Happy Employees

happy employees

A culture of learning allows employees to better their skills, giving them an edge over competitors. It empowers them with information, consequently improving their quality of life.

Higher Staff Retention

Studies show that employees are 75% less inclined to seek employment elsewhere when working in an environment with a high engagement rate. Staff is more likely to remain at an organization that provides opportunities for self-improvement.

More Capable Employees

By adopting a learning culture, employees receive continuous training and improvement. The result is a workforce capable of handling all types of challenges. 

Keep Up With Current and Emerging Trends in Business

A learning culture keeps employees updated on the latest trends in their fields. Continuous education allows them to receive the most recent and accurate information. It also widens their knowledge base, not just in their area of expertise.

How to Create a Learning Culture in an Organization → Step by Step

1. Create The Right Structure/Framework

Creating an L&D structure

Plan out what courses and classes you intend to provide. Draft up a learning culture theory for remote employees, including online resources. Development plans are specially designed for individual employees to teach new skills or refine the existing ones. 

A plan is useful in creating a framework for building a learning culture in your organization. It also allows you to keep track of employee performance and participation rates.

2. Create Tailored Coaching Sessions

Customized coaching and training sessions are a valuable asset to creating a culture of learning. These tools ensure individuals tap into their strengths while working on their weaknesses. First, you’ll need to identify the key strengths that employees can build on. 

The coaches will provide guidance and solutions to some of the challenges some staff might be facing. Creating these opportunities encourages job satisfaction and, consequently, higher employee retention.

3. Set An Example For The Rest

Get management and senior officials to participate in developing a learning culture.  Encourage executives to share their goals and challenges they’ve experienced while learning. Once other employees see their seniors taking part, they’ll want to participate too. 

This way, you get the whole team on the same page.

4. Supply The Required Resources


You need to have the required educational material to establish a learning culture. Develop a learning management system (LMS) to compile and store these resources. Make it accessible to all employees.

It should contain a variety of learning materials ranging from:

  • PDFs
  • Webinars
  • Videos
  • Audio recordings
  • Presentations.

Having a Learning Management System is beneficial because:

  • It streamlines storage and tracking.
  • It’s perfect for storing course materials, certificates, and performance records.
  • It gauges the effectiveness of educational strategies.
  • Employees can keep track of their career choices.
  • It offers insight for career advancement.
  • It’s more affordable and accurate than manual recordkeeping.

Key Components of a Learning Management System

  • A course builder where employees can access precise training and other resources.
  • Skill and Performance Tracking.
  • Online Learning - such that anyone can access the materials despite not being present physically.
  • Video conference solutions - employees can interact with their instructors one-on-one.
  • Memberships - to streamline the distribution of learning materials.

Keen to learn more about our LMS functionalities? We're happy to show you around!

5. Get Suggestions From Staff

Another effective way to create a learning culture in your organization is by sourcing ideas from your employees. Formulate surveys and ask staff to participate. Alternatively, hold a meeting and encourage them to share the areas they’d like improved. Emails are also helpful at capturing this information.

Your staff are the primary audience and consumers of the education. They can provide insight on what areas to provide training and resources. Besides, the feedback may help troubleshoot and develop solutions as a unit. By encouraging communication, you create a stronger sense of company culture.

6. Integrate A Learning Culture Into Your Core Values

core values learning culture

Your core values are the foundation on which your organization stands. They guide the decisions and actions of corporations. So your core values must support learning to adopt a successful approach to learning.

Ensure that all team members understand and recognize the importance of developing a learning culture. 

7. Encourage Learning in New Hires

Ensure that every employee who joins your team familiarizes themselves with your core values. These values will help ingrain a learning culture by creating a framework for high performance.

Educate recruiters on what traits to look out for when interviewing candidates. Be on the lookout for prospects who show an innate drive and excellent problem-solving skills with the ability to improvise. These skills are essential. 

Besides, an organization that provides learning opportunities to its staff is an incentive to recruits. It displays a commitment to optimum performance and guarantees higher productivity.

8. Give Constructive Feedback

Studies indicate that 69% of employees would perform better if they received recognition for their contributions. It shows that feedback is essential in the workplace. Regularly, let your employees know when you think they did well and areas they should work on.

This input helps improve work processes and refine business strategies.

9. Develop A Learning Plan 

Creating this framework provides a foundation for employees to build and add more skills and knowledge. It also allows for continuous evaluation and improvement. Prepare an overview of the areas you’d like to focus on during learning. 

They could be anything from:

  • Ethics
  • Financial management
  • Project planning and management
  • Advertising

10. Rituals (E.G. Weekly Learning Hours in The Whole Company)

A great way to create a culture of continuous learning in an organization is by incorporating rituals into daily practice. Encourage employees to set aside time in their busy schedules for learning, preferably two to three hours. They can set reminders or key them into their calendars and planners. 

These are great ways to boost accountability and ultimately, participation.

11. Give Recognition to Learning

Recognize and reward employees who participate in the learning culture. It can be anything from bonuses to congratulatory messages on Slack. It will motivate other employees to take part.

Employee recognition

12. Make It Visible (To Motivate Others)

One way to motivate employees to create a learning culture is by marketing the concept to them. Use Slack to send regular notifications explaining the process and its benefits. Visual aids such as infographics can help drive the points home.

13. 70:20:10 Approach

The 70:20:10 method is an approach that sums up various learning methods. It stresses the importance of experience, interaction, and continuous training. The Centre For Creative Leadership (CCL) created the method after conducting a study on the learning culture among executives.

The ratios are distributed as follows:

  • 70% work-related experiences
  • 20% developmental relationships - interactions with peers and other staff members
  • 10% training and coursework - both physical and online learning.

Why Use The 70:20:10 Model?

  • It’s a flexible approach to learning and allows individuals to select a suitable system according to their abilities. 
  • It also breaks the monotony of formal education by offering options such as e-learning.
  • It empowers employees to take action and apply their skills and experience to their various work settings. 
  • It allows adaptability by providing the resources according to an individual’s needs.

14. Social Learning

social learning as a way to bring people together

Encourage staff to share, either through physical meetings or video conferencing. Discussions between employees can help cement concepts they’ve learned. They provide a forum where you can ask questions and get different takes on conflicting subjects. 

15. Nudges (Little Messages Through Slack)

Slack allows you to send messages in bulk across your organization. It also allows you to communicate with remote employees. This way, you can send reminders to employees on the learning days.  

16. Evaluate The Learning Strategies

The last step to establishing a learning culture is evaluating and adjusting your strategies. Go through test results, courses completed, and employee engagement to assess the success of these techniques. This information will help you customize them sufficiently according to individual performance.

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Popular Ways of Learning

Personalized Coaching

Personal coaching gives you the space to be vulnerable. It allows employees to open up about their struggles or challenges. They get a one-on-one opportunity to learn, thereby boosting engagement levels.

Workshops and Conferences

workshop in times of covid - participants wearing masks

These are tailored for small to medium workforces and promote teamwork between employees. Members also network and learn new concepts in a more interactive setting.


presentation at workplace

Slideshows encourage audience engagement. The visual aids reinforce learned concepts, making them easier to remember. They are versatile and can be projected using a laptop or mobile phone.

Group Training

Group training is perfect for courses such as fire prevention and safety. They encourage employees to refine soft skills such as communication and problem-solving.

Professional Training

Get a professional to take employees through specific courses such as programming or software development skills.

Online Learning Materials

Human Resource (HR) personnel can take advantage of e-learning and source courses and short programs for employees. Additionally, they can also provide webinars and videos on specific topics. It’s perfect for diverse workplaces comprising remote staff.

If you're curious to go deeper into innovative employee development methods, we gathered the most exciting ones here.

What Are the Key Characteristics of a Growth Mindset in the Workplace?

Employee perspective on learning culture: They stay longer and value suggestions by their bosses

A Devotion To Self Improvement and Learning

Devotion to self improvement

One way to identify a workplace that fosters a growth mindset is to look out for the passion for learning. Employees seek opportunities to keep learning through short courses and even online learning. Their goal is to become leaders and experts in that field.

It’s the perfect chance to grow not only as an employee but as an individual. Through continuous learning, individuals sharpen their strengths while improving on their weaknesses.

Preparedness and Planning

A growth mindset workplace has a framework that’s flexible and allows adaptability. It has plans and strategies to govern, provide guidance and troubleshoot action processes. Team members also have contingency measures to mitigate any challenges that may arise.


Resilience means the ability to face and overcome setbacks. It’s a vital characteristic in an organization due to the high-stress levels. It’s useful in helping you cope with stressful situations and even failure. High-stress levels in the workplace contribute to increased mental health disorders such as depression and anxiety

It goes hand in hand with persistence, keeping employees motivated. Resilience allows employees to bounce back even after suffering losses.

A Firm Belief in Self

Skill and confidence are an unconquered army.” George Herbert.

Confidence and a strong belief in self are critical indicators of a growth mindset. They are essential in coping with challenges and adverse outcomes. This belief also changes one’s perspective, encouraging them to view setbacks as learning opportunities.

Taking Calculated Risks

Individuals in a growth mindset workplace are not afraid to take risks. They take calculated risks, despite the threat of failure. They are excellent decision-makers. They are also perfectly capable of weighing the risks and rewards in a situation and finding the best alternative.


People with a growth mindset take action. They are dedicated and possess the drive to act, even when the circumstances aren’t conducive. They first come up with a comprehensive plan and then act on them. 

Employees with a growth mindset know how to apply their experience and skills to succeed. They are also not afraid to start small and build until their plan comes to fruition. Actionable people step out of their comfort zone and take calculated risks. 

The Ability To Stay Grounded

The ability to stay grounded and focused on the present is vital to keeping motivation high in the workplace. Individuals with a growth mindset know how to live in the moment. This quality allows them to grow and learn from their experiences. 

They understand the importance of letting the past go and bounce back from any shortcoming. 

Self Discipline

Self-discipline is essential to a growth mindset workplace because it keeps employees motivated despite various distractions. It keeps employees focused on the goal and helps them become more thorough. 

It allows them to keep working even when they don’t feel like it and gives them the drive to keep pushing even when the situation seems hopeless. 

Support For Coworkers

Employees understand the importance of teamwork and its role in fulfilling their company’s vision. They can recognize when a colleague is struggling and offer solutions. Alternatively, they might hold meetings to brainstorm solutions together. 


A growth mindset workplace encourages open-minded individuals. Such a workplace encourages individuals to think outside the box and encourages invention. Employees don’t have to rely on traditional solutions -they are free to explore their creativity to come up with answers. 

Wrap-up: How Can You Cultivate A Learning Culture in Your Organization?

A culture of learning allows employees to better their skills, giving them an edge over competitors. It keeps employees updated on the latest trends in their fields. Adopting a learning culture ensures employees receive continuous training and improvement.

There are several challenges to establishing learning in an organization. Your employees may not have the time to allocate to learning. Another challenge with establishing a learning culture is not knowing where to begin. 

You also need experienced and qualified individuals to provide the knowledge to guide staff on how to adapt to the program. Here are a few suggestions on creating a learning culture in your organization. 

One, prepare an overview of the areas you’d like to focus on during learning. Another great way is incorporating rituals into their daily practice. You can do this by encouraging employees to set aside time in their schedules for learning, preferably two to three hours.


If you want to establish a culture of learning in your employees, formal learning and development programs offer a good, structured start. On the other hand, you can do your bit by offering continuous feedback, and directing your employees’ effort towards achieving organizational goals. This not only reflects your commitment in helping them grow, but puts yourself as an exemplary model for your employees to follow. 

Combining these two aspects of learning is our employee development program. With customizable templates like Microlessons, Monthly 1:1s, and Performance Reviews, enable your people to hone new skills on autopilot!

Speak to our experts anytime for a free consultation or download our free employee development plan templates.


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