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Interview: why learning culture and community are a priority at General Assembly

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Scott Cooper
2016-09-01

General Assembly are known as leaders in education and providing the highly sought after skills needed to make carve out a career in the modern workforce. As individuals and companies can struggle to compete in an increasingly technological world, General Assembly have managed to bridge the gap between the learners and skills.

Go1 have teamed up with General Assembly to run some exciting events in both Melbourne and Sydney during September with Go1 CEO Andrew Barnes leading a discussion around The Future of Learning. Panelist appearing at the events include Will Dayble of Fitzroy Academy, Sarah Moran of Girl Geek Academy, Sascha Grey of Hired and many more!
If you would like to come along to the events, you can RSVP here:

Sydney Event – September 13th

Melbourne Event – September 15th

In the lead up to the events we sat down with Garry Williams from Partnerships at General Assembly to learn more about the learning culture of the company, processes they have in place to utilize the talent within their team, and what they have learned about how people want to learn after running hundreds of events every year.

You can listen to the full interview here:

Blended learning is a key part of the education process for General Assembly.  Garry tells us that the learning culture is very hands on, but it allows members of their team to learn from their colleagues who have got backgrounds working with some of the biggest names in technology before arriving at GA. In order to keep up to date with current trends, GA lean heavily on their peep to peer programs to educate their team, in tandem with online offerings.

“There are many things to gain by complementing something like GA or Go1, with in-house experience”

GA also runs a range of workshops every week which could cover everything from search engine optimization, to PR and gamification to ensure that their employees have the information that they need to succeed in their role.

A key aspect of how GA manages their learning is through their worldwide community, and communicating with their teams across the world to ensure that everyone is working together and sharing resources, or in some case, people as they travel between offices.

Having recently experienced the GA onboarding program, Gary says that there is a relatively intensive onboarding program in place for new team members, but the program utilizes skills of new hires that may have been over looked in the past. Moving from the corporate world into the startup scene, Garry notes that it was a challenging change of direction, however a lot of his skills crossed over and he was able to demonstrate that he was the right person for the role.

Running so many events give the GA a real insight into how attendees like to learn. When talking about how people love to learn at their events Garry, says that the top three reasons that people attend are to:

  • Feed off the knowledge being presented, and those in attendance through networking.
  • Explore their passions. They may not be in the career that they would like learn more about a subject and be involved with the community surrounding it so they can work towards making a switch into that profession.
  • Learn more about what is happening in the community. What are other companies doing, and what are they working on. This encourages people to push their own boundaries and develop new and exciting concepts.

When it comes to his own learning, Garry tells us that he enjoys keeping up to date with email newsletters from a select group of trusted writers who may only release new material every few weeks, even though he admits “it’s a bit of a nightmare for my inbox.”

“The common theme between all of the best material I receive is that they are all willing to share their content, but having something like Go1 is also very valuable for helping me quickly and easily learn new skills. “  

 

“There’s never been a more accessible time to learn. “

If you would like to be a part of the discussion around the future of learning, we’d love to see you at one of our events where you will have the chance to hear from some of the leaders in the learning industry, as well as ask questions and be a part of the conversation!

Go1 helps millions of people in thousands of organizations engage in learning that is relevant, effective and inspiring.
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