Unlocking Success: The Power of Just-in-Time Learning

Unlocking Success: The Power of Just-in-Time Learning

In today’s fast-paced world, information bombards us from all directions. Whether it’s the latest industry trends, software updates, or project-specific knowledge, staying relevant and effective requires continuous learning. Enter just-in-time learning, a dynamic approach that aligns perfectly with our busy lives.

The Ebbinghaus Forgetting Curve: A Reminder

The Ebbinghaus Forgetting Curve reminds us that we forget up to 50% of new information within an hour if we don’t actively use it. That’s a staggering statistic! But fear not—just-in-time learning is here to rescue our memory lapses.

What Is Just-in-Time Learning?

Just-in-time learning occurs precisely when knowledge or skills are needed to perform a task or solve a problem. It’s like having a pocket-sized mentor who whispers guidance right when you need it.

Here’s what sets it apart:

  1. Timeliness: Imagine you’re knee-deep in a project, and suddenly, you must create a pivot table in Excel. You’ve got some basic Excel knowledge, but pivot tables remain uncharted territory. Instead of enrolling in a lengthy course, you swiftly search for “how to create a pivot table in Excel.” Voilà! A short video tutorial or step-by-step guide appears. You watch, learn, and—boom!—create the pivot table. Success measured, time saved.
  2. Short-Form and Scenario-Based: Just-in-time content is concise and scenario-focused. No lengthy lectures or theoretical musings. Users get precisely what they need, right when they need it. It’s like ordering a customized coffee—no frills, just the essentials.
  3. Application in the Flow of Work: Picture this: You’re knee-deep in spreadsheets, and the pivot table challenge arises. You apply the steps immediately, seamlessly integrating learning into your workflow. No interruptions, no detours. Just results.

At Microsoft, we created the M365 Training Center by examining data on the top 100 activities Office 365 customers regularly used in each product and needed help applying. We built short-form text and video scenario-based solutions for each of the issues. This solution continues to help millions of customers “self-help” their way to success monthly while substantially reducing support call volume.

Traditional Learning vs. Just-in-Time Learning

Traditional learning methods involve structured courses, formal training programs, and certificates. While valuable, they don’t always align with real-time needs. Imagine attending a week-long Excel boot camp, only to forget half by Monday morning. Not ideal, right?

Just-in-time learning flips the script. It’s agile, adaptable, and laser-focused. No need to memorize an entire Excel manual—just grab the nugget you need and run with it.

How to Enable Learning in the Flow of Work

  1. Curate Resources: Build a repository of bite-sized learning materials. Videos, infographics, cheat sheets—they’re your secret weapons. Make them accessible to your team when they’re elbow-deep in tasks.
  2. Search Savvy: Encourage your team to be search wizards. Teach them how to find answers swiftly. “How to…” queries are their magic spells.
  3. Feedback Loop: Gather feedback. What worked? What didn’t? Adjust your just-in-time offerings accordingly.

Remember, just-in-time learning isn’t about certificates; it’s about competence. So, next time you’re in a pinch, embrace it. Your pivot table awaits!

Category: Just in Time

Date Created: 2024-04-14


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