WANT BETTER RESULTS FROM YOUR ONLINE WORKPLACE WELLNESS PROGRAM? UNPLUG IT!
Online learning is big these days. The four largest online learning platforms – Coursera, edX, Udacity and Udemy – boast more than four million students between them.
Online courses are attractive to both customers and suppliers. Students can learn in their own time and at their own pace, in the comfort of their own homes, and courses are cheaper than face-to-face courses. Employers can provide training with a smaller budget. Providers can reach people worldwide instead of only in their local area, and costs are lower; there’s no venue to provide, and content can be created once and delivered thousands of times electronically.
Sounds great, right? So why is online learning considered the black sheep of the educational family? Why are online degrees the fastest way for a resume to end up in the bin?
ONLINE LEARNING IS LESS EFFECTIVE THAN FACE-TO-FACE LEARNING
‘Hard skills’, such as touch typing or software programming, are task-oriented, while ‘soft skills’ are behaviour-oriented; their aim is to change people’s behaviours.
Why is Online Learning Less Effective Than Face-to-Face Learning?
Time Spent Online Damages the Body and Mind
Too much screen time can strain the eyes and shrink the grey matter in our brains. Too much sitting down can result in postural problems and Metabolic Syndrome, a poor health cocktail of diabetes, obesity and high blood pressure. It can also significantly increase your mortality risk – up to 52%. And here’s the kicker: regular exercise doesn’t even come close to cancelling it out, lowering mortality risk by only 4%.
Too much time online can lead to stress, sleeping disorders and depression. A notable stress is the pressure to always be available and the guilt of not returning messages. Screen viewing after dark often disrupts sleep patterns. It’s too easy to spend more time at the computer than you intended, and this can lead to time pressure and neglect of other needs and responsibilities, leading to mental overload.
A damaged body-mind cannot learn as effectively as one that functions properly.
Of even more concern is that:
Most Online Students Don’t Finish the Course. Many Don’t Even Begin the Course!
Despite impressive enrolment numbers for online courses, over 90% of students do not complete the course. Worse than that, only 32% of people enrolled in on-the-job courses actually begin the programs if they’re not mandatory.
The big reasons for students not finishing a course are getting bored, distracted or stuck.
Boredom: Most online education is the core of face-to-face education transplanted to a virtual location; much online learning is nothing more than a textbook read online or a slideshow with a voiceover. Large chunks of information are delivered without a chance to practice the knowledge being imparted.
Distraction: Distractions are a big problem for online learners. Most internet use now occurs via mobile devices, which are used in busy, noisy, public places where social interaction occurs, which makes it hard to focus. Most mobile educational content is not bite-sized, visually stimulating or interactive enough to capture and hold a student’s attention in an environment like this.
Confusion: Some students are independent learners and will figure it out themselves when they get stuck, but most students need someone to explain things to them when they don’t understand something. The lack of an expert within arm’s reach to ask questions and let the student know if they’re doing it right leads to many students giving up on the course, thus wasting their time and money.
WHY FACE-TO-FACE LEARNING IS MORE EFFECTIVE
Humans are Social Creatures and Crave Connection
Face-to-face learning allows interaction that is difficult, if not impossible, to simulate in an online environment. Networking is more effective when done with a handshake and spoken interaction. The teacher can minimise distractions in a classroom. Lessons can be adapted to the learner’s needs and this can be done in real time. Discussion is easier and can result in powerful experiences for the participants. And if the student gets stuck, the expert is within arm’s reach to help in real time.
TRAINING PLUS COACHING DELIVERS THE BEST ROI
If you want to get an even better return on your workplace wellness investment, face-to-face training supplemented by coaching has been found to produce even better results than training alone, especially in converting the staggering 71% of workers who are not engaged or are actively disengaged from their roles.
Several studies have found impressive results come from the training-coaching combination:
- An average ROI of $6-$7 for every $1 invested in coaching and coaching training.
- An average 86% increase in productivity, compared to 22% with training alone.
HOW CAN HSG HELP?
HSG delivers customised, face-to-face wellness training and leadership training. Along with specific wellness techniques like meditation, we teach people how to communicate, connect, and listen, and give them plenty of opportunities to practice the behaviours. Our programs are so effective at improving workplace wellness our clients have reported candidates climbing over one another in order to work for them!
Find out more here.