Malcolm Knowles, one of the leading minds on adult learning theory, notes that adults are more likely to be motivated internally rather than externally (Knowles et al., 2020). However, Knowles wasn’t claiming that all adults are self-motivated – he was comparing the motivations of adults and most children. The reality is that some adults need a bit more motivation, and this should be considered in your early planning stages.
You can improve motivation for reluctant employees by embedding the answer to the question ‘Why should I care about this?’ into your eLearning plan. You’ve already identified something they need to know and do differently, and it’s probably for a good reason if you’re spending your time and resources on it. But your motivation may not be the same as theirs, and you’re creating the eLearning for them.
If possible, brainstorm with your employees who will be taking the eLearning. If this isn’t an option, find alternative ways to gather their input before development gets underway. Explicitly address how the learning applies to what your employees care about and connect it to the desired outcomes of the eLearning. Once you have identified how you’ll motivate your employees, it’ll be easier to find ways to transform a learning resource into a dynamic and engaging eLearning solution that works.