#31: A discussion on Learning and Development

A discussion on learning and development: Episode Notes

Learning and development is usually seen as a subset of the Human Resources department, and it is related to improving employees’ competencies and performance. 

Oftentimes, just like it happens with many other well-being practices at work, companies do not treat learning and development as a main priority for their business. As a matter of fact, revenue growth, profitability and technology investment tend to come first. 

But why is it so hard for companies to embrace a “people first” mentality?

In this episode of Stepsero, we ask Christoph Spiessens, who has spent the last fifteen years in learning and development.
Below are a few highlights from our conversation: 

  • Learning and development should be approached holistically. This means that L&D practitioners should strive to identify employees’ needs and motivation factors outside of conventional practices.

  • Learning and development is about gaining employees’s trust by listening, rather than performing. In this regard, no amount of conventional off-the-shelf training, no matter how brilliantly designed, will hit the target if it is focused on the wrong objectives.

  • Managers and company leaders can take the first step to establish a circle of trust at work. One way to do this is to show their own vulnerability.

  • Individuals generally benefit by deliberately choosing a “being mode” over a “doing mode”.
    The doing mode is usually about trying to change one’s own status, which causes people to avoid facing their fears and anxieties. The being mode, on the other hand, allows people to accept their situation, therefore lifting any unnecessary pressure.

Our Guest: Christoph Spiessens

Christoph Spiessens Profile picture

Christoph Spiessens is an inspirational author, certified coach and accredited mindfulness teacher. His book, “Life of a Lifetime” is published by Business Expert Press, NY.
Christoph helps people thrive with mindfulness workshops and talks, and brings secular mindfulness to employees across all sectors and all levels in a practical and usable way.

When people ask him where he gets his “calm energy” from, Christoph always replies: “Life itself. It’s an incredible, humbling experience and the journey teaches us so much. The good, the bad and the ugly. We can -if we choose to- grow from it all. I have a huge passion for life and the opportunities it brings us to evolve into happier, more fulfilled, self-actualising people. This excitement fuels my work.” 

He is particularly fascinated by the intersection of neuroscience, spirituality and wellbeing. Christoph is a childhood abuse survivor. The recovery journey was not always easy but he cultivated a practical, secular spirituality along the way that continues to empower him. He believes his message can help you thrive too.


Christoph Spiessens Linkedin profile


Christoph’s profile on Insight Timer