In the quest to keep up with the ever-changing technology, the dynamic and fast-evolving workspace, organizations are being forced to shun traditional training techniques. And with employee development becoming a top priority for many companies across various industries, organizations are on the lookout for the best employee training techniques. Although there are tons of leadership development training methods ranging from self-directed courses to in-depth multi-day experiences, some are more compatible with the current landscape of work than others.
Business simulation based experiential training is one employee development technique that is becoming popular in the corporate world. It involves workers learning a specific skill by using a simulation in a controlled environment that is similar to the real-world. Although business simulation based experiential learning has been in use for a long time in other industries, it doesn’t lend itself well in the business environment unless done correctly.
However, many companies are turning to business training simulations since it combines two separate elements, learning, and hands-on experience. This means that learners get to use the skills they learn immediately on their specific posts. Besides allowing employees to gain some skills by participating in the action, it also boasts other outstanding benefits.
Benefits of Corporate Training Simulation Based Experiential Learning
- Business Training Simulations Increases Engagement Levels
We’ve all found ourselves in a situation where we step into a presentation room, and after ten minutes, we switch off, and our minds start wandering around thinking about a silly thing like what we will take for lunch. This is because we don’t feel like part of the ongoing training.
However, with hands-on simulation based experiential learning, you get hooked up as soon as the training starts, and you get hitched from the word go. By collaborating and learning from each other, all participants become actively engaged. And since employees are involved in solving a problem or completing an event together, they own the outcome and feel like they are part of it. Additionally, working together helps employees stay focused, absorb more information, and enjoy learning new skills and concepts.
- Bridges the Gap between Theory and Practice
Reading a book about marketing strategies is one thing, but seeing how the strategy works in a real-world is another. Business simulation based experiential learning allows workers to practice what they have been reading in books. The act of “learning by doing” gives participants the chance to practice what has been taught firsthand without the fear of failure. This not only makes them more confident when they come to work in the real world but also plays a crucial role in increasing the retention rate of concepts and ideas.
- Drives Conviction
Any training initiative is geared towards changing behavior in order to attain a specific goal or outcome. If people participating in the training are not convinced or are unsure that an outcome will occur, they won’t be interested in accomplishing the task at hand, and there will be no behavioral change in the long run.
The best thing about business simulations based experiential learning is that it starts by creating a kind of conviction that is hard to ignore. This technique not only helps employees to learn how to accomplish something but also tells them why it matters. When workers see positive results when doing a simulation, they will be swayed to test it out in the real work environment since they have confidence in what they are doing.
- Delivers a Measurable ROI
The ROI of a training program is the primary focus of any organization. And while you can collect feedback surveys or test participants after a seminar to gauge the amount of information they grasped from the training, these techniques do not guarantee long-term behavior.
However, with experiential learning, you get the best results than any other program as participants retain more information when they take that part in the training. Experiential learning helps employees overcome “learning decay” by connecting concepts to behaviors, instilling conviction, and providing participants with an experience they can refer to.
- Offers a Safe Learning Environment Where Failure is Encouraged
The worst fear for any employee is to make a blunder that would jeopardize their job. Business training simulations gives employees the chance to step out of their comfort zone. Here, they can learn to perform challenging tasks that require critical thinking in a safe learning environment. The method allows participants to make mistakes without worrying about losing their jobs. And since simulations use real-life situations, employees can get to have fun as they get to try out some of their craziest ideas in a safely controlled environment.
- It Boosts Morale, Collaboration, and Resilient Thinking
In the typical work setting, employees spend hours working together. And so should be the learning process. Business training simulations puts participants in various team-based activities, thus emphasizing the importance of teamwork and leadership. When teams are solving a matrix together, completing a construction task, or doing what the leadership has directed them to do, they learn to work as a cohesive unit, something that helps boost their morale and confidence.
- It can be used across a Broad Category of Topics
There are some topics in business that require particular training methods. For instance, learning how to use software should involve hands-on training. Experiential learning helps to train people on an extensive spectrum of skills and competencies. Whether it is the introduction of new technology, leadership development training, or time management training, this learning method delivers outstanding results. Additionally, experiential business simulation programs can be customized to align to organization needs, and even directed towards a particular team. This means that it can be designed to reflect the company’s culture and use a language that resonates with the employees.
Although business simulation based experiential learning is not a new training technique, it has proven to yield outstanding results that most businesses look for. This training method delivers a plethora of benefits when compared to other traditional business training methods. It enhances engagement, promotes collaboration, offers a safe environment for trial and error, and delivers a measurable ROI. Participants also love it since it is fun and engaging. Therefore, if you are looking to create employee development initiatives, you could try multiple types of learning opportunities, but don’t forget to make experiential learning one of them.