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Learning & Development Strategy


I need to look at a variety of strategies, is anyone willing to forward me any you may have, i will be eternally grateful!
Many thanks
jayne eaton

4 Responses

  1. Strategy and context
    Dear Jayne

    I suspect you might need to provide a little more information about your circumstances in order to get a good result here. A strategy is a long term plan of action designed to achieve a particular goal, most often “winning”. Hence they are not easily digested into a few paragraphs.

    Moreover successful strategies usually exploit uniquely variable characteristics of terrain, market or competitive advantage. In other words it is the organisational and competitive context which is crucial in defining an L&D strategy. And a strategy which works well for one organisation in one context is very unlikely to work for another organisation in another context.

    In other words ‘reviewing a variety of strategies’ is very unlikely to be informative or useful to you. There are literally an infinite number of potential strategies out there!

    Generic ‘Strategies’ which could possibly be deployed in any context are probably better described as ‘tactics’.

    If you can be clearer about your situation then I would be happy to assist.

    Best wishes

  2. plan or strategy?
    Hi Jayne

    My reply is a little ‘off-beam’. Why? It’s the issue of what a strategy actually IS!

    Many many people who talk or write about strategy in any capacity almost always use the word ‘plan’. So you’ll often see ‘strategy’ defined as ‘long term plan’. (See This may be where problems arise. Why? Because building a plan is different to building a strategy…

    For me (and clearly not for many others!) a ‘long term plan’ is…

    … a long term plan!

    And ‘strategy’ is about a direction and a theme. Let me illustrate.

    In WW2 the long term plan was to win. Both sides had very detailed plans that in many aspects were very similar.

    But they had different strategies. They took different directions. The theme for the Allies was to destroy the ability of the enemy to wage war, hence the bombing of industrial infrastructure, and perhaps controversially, the workers who worked the factories. Once the ability to wage war was destroyed the invasion of mainland Europe would be easier, less costly in every sense and quicker too. An alternative strategy could have been to bottle up the Germans until the atom bomb had been perfected, then used it to bring about a rapid surrender of the enemy.

    You might still be thinking strategy = long term plan … and tactics = shorter term plan, perhaps [according to Wikipedia, eh Adrian! ;-)] less rehearsed…

    And I’d still say “No!” – tactics may have less scope and relate more readily to specific actions – dare I say it a plan, but they are typically anything but ‘less rehearsed’.

    Wikipedia also talks about strategy coming from the Greek word for leadership. Leadership is about direction and theme and vision, not about specific plans – that’s implementation and management.

    So, decide for yourself what you are asking for and need – a copy of somebody else’s long term plans, or ideas about directions and themes to take with developing people and the organisation…

    So, some development strategies might be, for example…

    … to develop our managers (which is a GOAL) by… sending them on external academic qualification (this last bit is the theme or direction to take to achieve the goal). Or your strategy might be to train some managers to act as coaches who will then coach other managers – same goal achieved, but a different theme/direction employed.

    And, confusingly, different strategies will almost certainly mean different plans – hence the easy confusion!

    Long term plans are specific to a situation, but strategies are more readily applicable to other situations.

    When you talk about strategy as theme and direction to others, they will pick it up and understand in more easily, and do useful things with this knowledge, than if you talk about specifics of a long term plan.

    So, do you want copies of plans, or copies of strategies?

    See Richard Koch’s excellent book “Smart Things to Know about Strategy” for more!

    Best wishes,


  3. Deja Vu?
    Thanks Martin

    As is often the case within Trainingzone, we have been here before! See:

    As you can see, I credited Wikipedia for their definition at the time.

    I think I see what you are driving at, but I still see very limited merit in reviewing sample strategies at random without reference to your circumstances. Given that there are an infinite range of options out there, reviewing a few is hardly likely to narrow the field!

    Reviewing some well documented, tried and tested strategies might seem useful. However the most spectacularly successful strategies break all the conventions. In fact strategies that are well documented and conventional often result in an impasse because the opposition will usually adopt exactly the same methods. e.g. trench warfare



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