Developing a Learning Culture

U.N. Unites the World One eLearning Course at a Time

When the U.N. offers a giant catalog of e-courses in many languages, it’s a certainty that eLearning is here to stay. The U.N.’s Institute for Training and Research is where diplomats, NGO employees, public policy bureaucrats, U.N. employees and others go to learn. The institute is also open to the public. Anyone willing to pay the price (starting at $800 per course) can enroll.

Why on Earth Would You Take a U.N. Course?

Suppose a company is considering negotiations for a joint venture with a company located halfway around the world? The “Financial Globalization” course would be a good starting point to help determine if the idea is feasible before sinking time and money into the idea.

Paging Emily Post

Etiquette and protocol are as important as what you bring to the table when negotiating internationally. Recall the scene in the HBO documentary Too Big to Fail when Lehman Brothers CEO Dick Fuld broke into the boardroom making demands of the Korean suitors. He sent his only hope of saving Lehman packing—right there, on the spot. Had he taken the course “Cross Cultural Negotiation,” the entire course of history might have changed. The course could help executives navigate through the maze of protocols and etiquette in advance of wading into unfamiliar terrain.

Evangelize a Brand

Author James Altucher classifies a company of fewer than 30 people as a tribe or a family. At 30 people, leaders can interact with everyone, building trust. At 150 people, stories build trust among the group.

When a company goes global, courses such as the U.N. course “Innovative Collaboration for Development” might fill the gap for directors and managers until the company can expand its eLearning offerings to encompass the new challenges of the global enterprise.

When a company needs to train only a few people to deal on the international stage, it makes sense to turn to the U.N. courses. Once established in the global marketplace, the company can rely to Massive Online Open Courses (MOOCs) and in-house social learning or Facebook @ Work until it can implement or update its in-house eLearning program.