Learning Profile of the Month: PATH

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September 29, 2017

Learning Profile of the Month: PATH

By Shannon Dowd

Manager, Global Training and Development PATH

This month, our Learning Profile looks PATH. A version of this blog was originally posted on LINGOs.  

Who we are

PATH is the leader in global health innovation. An international nonprofit organization, we save lives and improve health, especially among women and children. We accelerate innovation across five platforms—vaccines, drugs, diagnostics, devices, and system and service innovations—that harness our entrepreneurial insight, scientific and public health expertise, and passion for health equity. By mobilizing partners around the world, we take innovation to scale, working alongside countries primarily in Africa and Asia to tackle their greatest health needs. Together, we deliver measurable results that disrupt the cycle of poor health. With headquarters in Seattle, Washington, PATH has 1,600+ employees and offices in 20 countries.

What does learning mean to your organization?

The concept of learning at PATH has evolved since we joined LINGOs in 2007. Learning was once thought of as professional development or training, and it is now one of four guiding principles of our people philosophy: we value and support learning. This means that we learn and grow from our successes and failures by contributing and sharing knowledge and by strengthening each other to achieve impact and grow our careers. This principle is carried throughout our organization and within the greater global health community.

How we learn at PATH 

We originally joined LINGOs for the benefits of gaining a learning management system (LMS)—which we named PATHwise—and leveraging online learning at a discount.

Over the last ten years, we have acquired a standalone LMS through Net Dimensions (a LINGOs partner) and now have an internal LMS portal, PATHwise, and an external LMS portal, G/3 Learning, which hosts free training to our partners.

PATHwise has become the central hub for all of PATH’s learning opportunities for staff. Here, we manage our internal and external compliance training and certifications, core role face-to-face training, and 55 eLearning courses that PATH developed thanks to the Articulate licenses we received as a member. We also offer 300+ asynchronous courses from the LINGOs catalog, many of which have been tied back to our leadership competency toolkit. Our staff can also find eCornell courses and certificate programs within our LMS, and we are preparing to launch several language programs from Speexx.

I would say that the greatest success story was bringing PMD Pro into our organization. Launched in 2012, this training provided the necessary language, framework, and tools to communicate about project management across the organization. By licensing the content, we have been able to evolve the training over the years into what is now our Project Management Basics curricula and provide virtual and face-to-face preparation programs for taking the PMD Pro certification. We have trained over 900 staff and elevated project management as a required skill to manage our projects efficiently.

The difference learning has made

Learning, perform, grow – these are the concepts that our talent philosophy is built on. Here is one staff member’s experience, in his own words:

"My name is Dickens Omedo Ochuka. I joined PATH as a monitoring and evaluation (M&E) associate based in Nyamira, Kenya, for the AIDS, Population, and Health Integrated Assistance (APHIAplus) Western project , supporting two counties. During this period as an associate, I took time to study and engage in continuous leaning and development through PATHwise with courses mostly on M&E and project management. This enhanced my abilities to effectively deliver my work and APHIAplus project goals and targets. A year down the line, I was promoted to the position of M&E officer for the Nyanza Region.

"By virtue of this position, I lead a team of five M&E associates. This leadership role prompted me to continue improving my skills to be able to mentor the team and deliver effectively in my position. I have relentlessly engaged in learning, and I am currently a student of a nine-month Professional Engagement Program (PrEP) for M&E professionals at PATH. This is an exciting opportunity where learners receive mentorship from experts and learn best M&E practices from across the globe. I have already started replicating these lessons in my day-to-day work."

 

Our future learning plans

In 2017, we aligned our budget to PATH’s organizational strategies, and it served us well. As we prepare for 2018 and beyond, we continue to align learning with PATH’s evolving priorities. In the learning and development sphere, this includes activities resulting from the new people philosophy including a performance management update, creating a talent framework, and job standardization for core roles. As key skills and competencies are identified, we will be ready to support staff in their development and guide them through their career pathways.

Our advice to you?

Above all, PATH has consistently taken advantage of the wealth of expertise within the LINGOs community and among LINGOs staff. Whether this involved requesting testers for our first-ever eLearning course or seeking guidance as we developed our talent strategy and people philosophy, the importance of building relationships and leveraging them has far outweighed the cost of our level two membership dues. Learning is not just for our staff, it is for everyone. Learn from this community. Ask questions. Contribute YOUR knowledge and expertise when you can.

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