• Home
  • Blog
  • Four Strategies for Creating Learning Videos That Drive Behavior Change in Your Organization

Four Strategies for Creating Learning Videos That Drive Behavior Change in Your Organization

Learning videos are a core learning delivery medium in today’s world, and every organization can benefit from video as an essential element of its learning strategy. Storytelling that’s relatable and emotive makes video a powerful tool to drive behavior change for your learners. To make video effective in driving behavior change, it is vital that it is relevant and relatable for your learners so they can empathize with the characters and engage with the learning.

Learning Videos Have Changed

In recent years, the way companies are approaching their learning challenges has changed fundamentally. Leaders are taking a far more holistic 360°, human-centered view of business issues than they used to.

For example, 20 years ago, health and safety videos were largely predictable films showing two-dimensional characters breaking—or adhering to—company rules. These videos centered on the message, “follow the rules.” They were aimed at remedial processing—encouraging each learner to take individual responsibility for themselves but, usually, no one else.

Today, organizations acknowledge that even when people know the rules, they still break them. So, leaders are asking themselves, ““how do I help my people understand the importance of the rules and the impact they have on the business?”

Why Behavior Change is Crucial

Through video, you can ask learners to consider problems that don’t necessarily have a clear “right” or “wrong” position for success. By focusing on more complex scenarios and decisions, the learning becomes about encouraging people to think more deeply about issues and make sound judgements rather than simply equipping them with knowledge.

Today’s learning videos often focus on collective responsibility, or the idea that everyone in an organization should be aware of guidelines and work together to ensure they are adhered to. This is a clear and important progression from the mindset that each person is responsible for themselves and not for others.

Employees are three-dimensional beings, and when mistakes happen, often there has been a long chain of events leading to the poor decision. The chain could include events at work, at home, or even other co-workers’ behaviors or actions. This means that encouraging your people to take collective responsibility makes it easier to achieve behavior change.

Create Effective Learning Videos

When planning your video for learning, it is important to consider the learning objectives in relation to your company’s critical issues. This thinking should go far beyond ensuring that your learners score a certain percentage in a post-learning test. The important factors in this kind of learning often fall outside of anything that is easily measurable in the short term but that can have a major positive impact in the long term.

Consider implementing the following four strategies to create effective videos for learning:

1. Reflect Your Company Culture

It is vital that your video encapsulates and reflects your company culture, so it is important to be very clear about what that is and what you want it to be in the future. For your people to feel happy and thrive in their roles, they need to know how they fit into your company culture and how that culture is defined across the organization.

2. Demonstrate Empathy Through Storytelling

The biggest engagement tool we have in video is empathy, as we want people to reach a place of “rational compassion.” Learners need to be engaged and involved enough in the video to care about what happens. However, they cannot be so involved that they are unable to think rationally about the situations that are being introduced. Rational compassion is the middle point between emotion and intellect; it is the ability to feel something for another human being while also being able to analyze why and what they’re doing is making you feel a certain way.

Any topic that is behavioral in nature works well with a video narrative. If people are to make changes in their own behavior, first they need to empathize. When learners can understand and appreciate other people’s perspectives and experiences, and relate them to their own, they are more likely to adopt behaviors that consider these needs and feelings.

When using video, learners can put themselves in the shoes of the characters and can understand their challenges and struggles. This understanding can help learners modify their own behaviors.

3. Evoke Emotion

If your video makes your people feel, they will remember the message. Memories are linked inextricably to feelings. If people don’t feel something about a piece of information, they don’t tend to remember it.

Memories and feelings are closely linked because emotions are often tied to specific events or experiences. When people recall memories, especially those associated with strong emotions like joy, sadness, fear, or love, the feelings associated with those memories are reactivated. This is why people tend to relive the emotions they felt during a significant event when they think back on it.

A video that triggers emotions in your people is likely to stay with them.

4. Avoid Alienating Your People

Every day in their homes, people watch high quality television—they are used to this quality and expect it. Therefore, it is crucial that your learning video meets these high standards. Video of poor quality is likely to alienate your learners straight away and prevent them from engaging. It is also important that your video is designed to hook your workforce and encourage them to empathize from the start. Opening the video with a situation that is familiar and relatable to the learner is a great way to do this.

Creating a setting and characters that are unrelatable to your people could also alienate them and prevent them from engaging with the learning. Therefore, it is important to create a product that reflects your people and your company. For example, an office setting can be designed to look like your workplace, so it will be familiar to learners as soon as they start watching. It is also important to include characters that reflect the workforce that your learning is targeting.

Connect with and Engage Learners to Drive Behavioral Change Through Video

To create effective learning videos, it is important to employ traditional storytelling and film-making conventions. These established practices around structure, narrative, and character have endured for centuries because they work, and they work because they connect deeply with learners. In learning videos, we can marry these techniques with robust and detailed learning design to create highly engaging stories that drive the desired change and create a positive impact.

Get in touch if you’d like help designing learning videos that drive lasting behavior change in your organization.

About the Authors

Frank McCabe

Get in touch.

Learn more about our talent transformation solutions.

Transformation doesn’t happen overnight if you’re doing it right. We continuously deliver measurable outcomes and help you stay the course – choose the right partner for your journey.

Our suite of offerings include:

  • Consulting Services | Aligning vision and strategy to deliver integrated and systemic business results to drive growth and change through people.
  • Learning Services | Modern learning strategies, content, experiences, and delivery approaches that optimise workforce performance.
  • Technologies | An ecosystem of learning and talent tools, systems, platforms, and expertise that enable learning and talent transformation.