workplace learning for all corporate learning montparnasse tower paris

Towards Workplace Learning For All over Corporate Learning

This week, I participated in a one-day conference on The Future of the Corporate University, a hybrid event – on-site in Paris, France and remote over Zoom.

workplace learning for all corporate learning montparnasse tower paris

A view from the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France. A photo I shot.


“ESCP and the Corporate University Club are organizing an international conference devoted to the Future of the Corporate University. In a context of disruptive changes in the business world where upskilling and reskilling are at the top of the agenda of companies, Learning & Development professionals have to reinvent the way they work in order to make possible this business transformation. 

This conference will bring together some of the best specialists in Learning and Development coming from both the academic and business worlds. A unique moment to exchange, reflect and design the new track of the Corporate University.



Plenary sessions

  • Shaping the future of Corporate Universities. 
  • The performance of the Corporate University

Morning Workshops

  • Learning communities, peer-to-peer training, distance learning: How these new learning techniques will be shaping the future of Learning?
  • The new place of the individual in learning
  • Unleashing Team learning, the « strong link » of learning organizations    
  • Learning in remote and hybrid environments: the challenge of performance and well-being  

Afternoon Workshops

  • Advances in behavioural sciences will accelerate the effectiveness of training.
  • The Future leader – leading in the future: new trends in top executive development 
  • AI & positive use of data: towards an « augmented learning organization”?
  • The most important pedagogical innovations for successful learning


  • Looking at the Future of Corporate Universities: New Challenges, New Development & New Organizations”

Below are my live notes from the plenary sessions and a few workshops throughout the day—insights from the hosts, speakers, and participants.

Plenary Morning Session: Shaping the Future of Corporate Universities


“For the next decade, what should be the evolving role of Corporate Universities? How to evolve their scope within & even beyond the organization? Will they become catalysts of “learning organizations” and how?

What existing & emerging trends will enable to move from programmes to “lifelong learning”? How should Business Schools & Corporate Universities partner to create this “new world of education & learning” for companies?”


“What if we explore more team learning & community learning instead of focusing only on individual learning?”


“We need to be more curators and generators than just creators.”


“We need an ecosystem for corporate learning: faculty + research + industry.”


“Pair group work to work on how they work, decide – to dive into corporate culture and debunk clichés – national & global. To reshape a global corporate culture.”

Morning Workshop ‘Learning in remote and hybrid environments: the challenge of performance and well-being’


“The world of work is transforming faster than ever before. Companies are challenged to stay productive, keep learning and preserve the well-being of their people in remote and hybrid environments. What can corporate universities do to enhance the culture of learning and redesign the organisations to fit the new working world?”


“You need to breathe before running and learning. Use your senses. Research behind that. An AI platform to use moments to breathe. How can we leverage the physical space for generative workspace?

Mental + emotional + cultural. The work life share space. A flex situation.”


“Work from anywhere – project. Foster flexible working. Where and how you want to work – you decide with your manager. Come together when it is relevant and make sense.

Bring your own workday life. 3 days per week WFA. 2 days at the office. Conversation about the office. To co-create or to celebrate.

Go digital first.Then go physical. Implications on leadership, culture and well-being.

Culture of curiosity and growth – a learning program. It starts with your strengths to identify. Reflect. Who you are. What elements of resilience do you use?

Strengths based assessment. Use job shadowing. A go-to place to get recommendations on content + community platform.

Embrace curiosity, growth mindset to stay relevant and resilient.”


“Team work impacts individual well-being. Team dynamics.”


“How do you onboard better employees with new ways of learning & with technology?”

Afternoon Plenary Session: The performance of the Corporate University


“Since corporate universities have a major role in contributing to performance, they must themselves be exemplary in demonstrating the return on investment (often significant) that they represent. The measurement of this performance presupposes the mastery of three essential factors: the evaluation of training, the measurement of the materialization of acquired skills and the effectiveness of the skills paths associated with training.”


“How to measure of the investment of corporate university?

Budget cut for training. Level of upskilling need is high. All departments. What is the added value of what if we don’t do it instead of focusing on measuring upskilling?

Hybrid work program – a backpack for interpersonal skills even they are hard to assess. Flex learning.

It is not about corporate learning. I don’t like those terms. It is about learner’s engagement measurement via AI and so instead of focusing only on producing learning programs. It is about sustainable learning.

Each time there is a transformation and a crisis they are investment in a upskilling program. Speed and scale. Reinvent the way of operating – co-creation, cooperation & collaboration with the ecosystem of MNOs.

Future of corporate universities bundle initiatives from main MNOs.

A company is a school of excellence. Reason why people want to join. On the job learning. Low cost, high value as a company vs high high for a business school.

Responsible and sustainable education. Measuring the learning culture to have a visibility on means used to transform the organization: manager’s involvement promoted by discussions to foster the learning culture. Measuring the way we craft the learning culture.

Strong level of excellence of the design – inputs over outcomes measurement of a program delivery.

Corporate university as the future? Sylvie says: it is for only for a few folks. It is about learning for all.  A community of practice, worldwide.

Corporate university as the future? That is only for a few folks. It is much more about learning for all—a community of practice worldwide.”


“Measuring the non-financial indicators such as CSR. Produce first instead of measuring? Measure first the gap before the performance, especially for education.

What is the market value instead of performance value of a learning program?

What new hires look for? Education, careers, clients. Last: salary.

Corporate university are universal, not university. If it has a value, open it beyond your internal folks. Become the standard in the industry. Move from scaler/entrepreneur to founder for corporate education. Replace business schools.

Ask engagement questions instead of are you happy with this experience. Such as ask would like to be a coach as you were a coachee instead of are you happy? NPS, feedback forward.

Measure at the same time quality and quantity of learning and engagement. Measure the intangibles.”

Afternoon Workshop: AI & positive use of data: towards an “augmented learning organization”?


“How AI and Data can transform our learning policies & practices, to enable a « customized development for all » (at individual level), and the steering of learning for more impact (at organizational level).”


“AI pushes information in the LMS to learners. Work on improving learning paths. Personalising learning styles through analysis of data on people’s acquired skills and learning style. 

Distant offer – a course. Analysis of what was in the course with data analysis, analysis of the behaviour of the learners on the use of the content (done/not done) -> retrospective, improve the programme, recompose the educational course with the sequences.”


“Coaching App + cognitive enterprise (chatbot, pointing resources, pushing a new how-to) + employee experience = augmented employee.

Digital coach = cobot -> JIT learning + micro learning on the job at the right moment to increase the drive of employees to learn the know-how skills.

No more need to know how an app works in a mental way. The cobot will help us deal with this obesity of apps. Human/machine interface.

White collar workers will have to deal with this problem, hence the human-machine collaboration. From engineers to lawyers. Change the way we manage knowledge and learn.”

Afternoon Workshop: The Future leader – leading in the future: new trends in top executive development


“Which skills needed to face the new challenges and how to help our leaders to face them? New competency models and new practices in the development of leaders and future leaders.”


“Strategic foresight projects on climate issues: CSR. + Design thinking to develop projects to address that.”


“L&D experience as a leader. Embracing uncertainty through learning.


“Learning catalysts instead of learning practioneers.”

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Community Management helps propel your internal community and scale engagement to keep learning and innovating with your organization’s ecosystem.

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