Opower’s Catriona Moriarty on Improving the Employee Learning Experience

Doreen Lorenzo, director of the Center for Integrated Design at UT Austin, interviewed Catriona Moriarty, director of learning and development at Opower, for Learning Solutions Magazine.

Responsible for designing and implementing learning programs for over 500 staff members worldwide, Moriarty uses L&D (learning and development) to create effective learning programs for Millenials at the energy technology provider, Opower.

Designing learning programs for millennials is different than older groups because they have shorter attention spans, Moriarty said, but she believes that is a good thing because it ensures a deeper level of focus on her part.

One of the L&D trends she is closely following is exploring virtual reality as a tool in the workplace. Moriarty said, “Particularly, when I think about things like trying to teach something like empathy, or trying to teach some of these softer skills, there could be a real opportunity there to look at how we might simulate some of these emotions for people by giving them that safe space to kind of experiment and try on new behaviors and new, maybe less comfortable ways of interacting with each other.”

Moriarty believes the L&D process can fuel innovation at companies by instilling a sense of curiosity and a yearning to learn about others’ perspectives.  

 

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