In this issue of L&D QuestionTime we catch up with the Group Vice President of Learning & Development at Brambles Lynne Rutherford.

In your opinion what is the biggest anxiety within the world of learning and development at the moment?

I think the pace at which the world of work is changing has major implications for us as L&D professionals. There is an expectation that we become more digital, and the amount of information out there is overwhelming at times. We are starting to see the generational differences in how people want to learn, which is exciting and scary at the same time. Can we cater for all the needs of our different learners? Do we actually understand what the best solutions are and are we keeping up with the skills required to ensure that we remain relevant to our learners?

Who or what is informing your thinking around L&D?

This question really made me stop and think. My sense is that all the traditional “gurus” are having to rethink their own mental models around the L&D space as well. We are currently running a Learning Landscape in the organisation globally, as we really want to hear the voice of our learners.  Preliminary results are already influencing the way we design and deliver our learning and development strategy, and the way in which we partner with the business to do this. We have to be agile, and creative, without falling prey to the latest fads. The question is what do we need to do differently to ensure sustainable learning that has a real impact.

What is the most exciting innovation on the horizon for learning?

Has to be augmented reality! Our learners have told us they prefer to learn with games and simulations. Imagine what we can do with these new technologies!

What “game changers” would you like to see and why?

Mobile, mobile mobile. We learn the way we live, and learning on demand is the way of the future.

What do you think the world of L&D will look like by 2020?

There will be less of us, as user generated content increases. We have to learn to let go. Curation and virtual delivery will become increasingly important.

What advice would you give your 21 year old self?

Well, that was a long time ago! Find a good mentor, be courageous and believe in your own creativity. Don’t settle for the status quo, and make sure you are doing something you love.

Connect with Lynne on LinkedIn