Accelerate May 2015 - Page 54

Learning & Development Leveraging Learning Styles W BY TOM SCHAFER How Learning Styles Helped Us Create A Global Top 10 L&D Function hen I joined AmeriCredit, it provided subprime automobile loans across the USA and Canada. The company had 1,800 employees, on its way to a 4,000 strong workforce two and a half years later. AmeriCredit was on Fortune magazine’s list of the 100 Fastest Growing Companies in the USA. The many site locations across North America made its rapid rise in the Learning & Development world quite unique and a major challenge. A friend of mine had just been appointed Chief Learning Officer, and I joined him at AmeriCredit three months later, as the Vice President, Learning & Organisational Effectiveness. At that time, the company’s training efforts consisted of three trainers on telephone etiquette. Together, the five of us started up AmeriCredit’s Learning function. We had a “clean slate” for designing an L&D function. Here is how we incorporated the methodology of learning styles, a.k.a. learning preferences, as a critical component in creating one of the leading L&D functions both in the USA and internationally. 54 May 2015