Carly Lutz, Director of Programming, Community and Events at Learnit, was interviewed by Adam Torres of Mission Matters Innovation Podcast.
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Carly Lutz aims to build and cultivate community to help people foster the skills and connections needed to thrive in today’s workplace.
How did you get started?
Lutz says she’s always loved creating community spaces where people can learn and grow together. After struggling with loneliness in high school she developed her leadership skills and sense of belonging through participating on a cross-country team. That transformation helped Lutz realize that dedicating oneself to something while surrounded by positive people can foster long-lasting growth and development. This principle is the catalyst that led her to Learnit, an organization committed to helping individuals learn and develop skills for the hybrid workplace, and to helping organizations foster a culture of lifelong learning at scale.
What does the term ‘community’ mean to you?
The word “community” can mean many things, Lutz notes, but she personally draws inspiration from FeverBee founder Richard Millington, who defines community as any group of people who interact around a shared common interest or goal.
Lutz emphasizes the importance of learning in community. “When I started at Learnit and listened to our students, I realized there was a growing need for social, community-based learning that was more interactive and personal than social media, and that people wanted to keep connecting after an event or one of our live instructor-led workshops. I realized we had a huge opportunity to provide a safe space for our students to keep learning with us and to build that community space for them,” Lutz says. Transferring the infectious energy and excitement of live, in-person events to an online format has brought its own set of challenges, but ultimately virtual environments have their own strengths, too.
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Can you explain ‘value-based community’ and ‘value-based learning’? How does a sense of connectedness relate to learning?
Even before the COVID pandemic hit, Lutz says, there were always instances when people felt disconnected from their work and their colleagues. Monotonous day-to-day routines – in and out of the office – sap energy and make people feel disconnected from learning anything new and growing from it. “Live instructor-led engagements – through the form of a workshop, event, boot camp, or retreat – have historically served as an opportunity for organizations to generate a sense of shared excitement and energy and help people open up to learning something new, reconnecting or reigniting them with a sense of curiosity. We have had to find ways to continue to foster that excitement post-live engagement, online.”
In addition to facilitating instructor-led training and workshops on a variety of topics, Learnit’s main goal, she explains, is to nurture learning, spark innovation, and create spaces where people can share what they’ve learned in trainings or workshops through community. “The community helps us hold each other accountable to stick to the goals we’ve set. This process creates a strong sense of culture and belonging that remains long after the learning moment has taken place,” Lutz emphasizes.
Tell us more about Learnit.
Through engaging learning experiences that bring about personal and professional development, Learnit helps individuals, teams, and organizations do their best work. Their solutions build leaders, scale learning programs, and help people grow throughout their careers.
In other words, Lutz explains, Learnit helps organizations to not only focus on what skills they need today, but also what skills people will need for the future. This enables leaders to build a productive, happy, and empowered workforce. To that end, Learnit helps companies establish a learning culture consisting of systematic, holistic, and effective learning solutions for a variety of hard (technical) and soft skills. This is done through a mix of online and offline workshops and training sessions as well as private instructor training designed to answer questions and help with “bite-sized learning.” Each set of curricula works toward a specific goal set forth by the organization.
Who is a good fit to work with Learnit?
Companies turn to Learnit to scale their training and professional development efforts when they may not have the time or resources to touch on as many areas as they need to. This usually involves everything from managers that need to inspire, motivate, and get the most out of their team to simply improving overall productivity & efficiency across the organization.
Individuals also to turn to Learnit when they are feeling stagnant in their career and are looking for a community and resources to take their career to the nevel level. Learnit will work with the individual to recommend a learning path with courses to upskill in the areas that interest them, and connect them with a community of experts and fellow professionals to grow alongside.
To learn more, visit https://www.learnit.com/.