I blogged recently about the need for a network to help in developing L&D staff and how we had built one for Housing Associations in Wales. One of the areas we had discussed was how we could develop this further and include on occasions people from outside the Housing field. It was always at the back of my mind to do this at some point later in the year and how this would look.
And then things happened….
I have over the years worked with a L&D BP from another housing association whom I regard as a close colleague even though she is not in the same organisation as me. A few weeks ago she mailed me to let me know she was leaving housing to take up a role in the public sector. There were good reasons to move on and it is a very good career move for her. However the question arose as to how she and her new team could be involved in the network and how this would look going forward.
The result is the formation of the Wales Learning and Development Network. This is based on a LinkedIn group (link below) and is open to anyone who is involved in, or has an interest in, learning and development in Wales.
I do appreciate there is are strong CIPD group in Wales but it is fair to say they tend to concentrate on wider matters and don’t always involve L&D topics. The topics that all the Welsh branches of CIPD have scheduled for their meetings are very positive, including areas such as wellbeing and inclusion, but they are primarily HR related. Likewise, people who are not CIPD members, such as myself, do not have access to these events or the network as a whole. (As a MLPI and LiFITOL I am not sure what I would gain from doing a Level 3 CIPD to be allowed in at associate level).
So, the network is live as of yesterday and has 25 members and without even trying to promote it.
The way the network has been pitched is simple. It is informal, no question is a stupid one, and no selling.
We may meet up at some point in Cardiff and am encouraging people in other areas to meet, even if it’s in the local coffee shop. Where this goes and how it works, we will wait and see.
If you are in Wales, in or interested in L&D and on LinkedIn, come and join us: