Growing Season in L&D

By July 10, 2023July 17th, 2023LTEN Focus On Training


Guest Editor – Rachel Thyne

Gardening is much like onboarding new hires

Growing season is that time of year for getting out the gardening gloves to start prepping the soil for seeding.

As a gardening guru myself, I always find this time of year to be not only crucial for preparation but special because it is my opportunity to spend time creating the perfect growing conditions for my plants to thrive.

Growing season gardening is much like today’s corporate culture of employee new-hire learning and development (L&D). In the training L&D world, new-hire onboarding is our “seasonal soil prep time” where we can foster the perfect growing environment for our new employees to develop strong roots in their new roles.

To create the perfect growing environment for a garden, you must infuse nutrients into the soil, add just the right amount of water and give the area the right amount of sunlight. Similarly in new-hire onboarding, we generate these initial growing conditions to successfully help someone not only develop in a new role, but thrive.

As members of L&D, we have a unique opportunity to influence just this, and some of the key areas I personally focus on are:

  • Resources/Technology & Innovation:  Leveraging key resources and innovative technology as touchpoint enablers to enhance the growing environment of a new hire.
  • Process Development & Optimization:  Structuring operational processes around simplification and continuous improvement to generate a seamless experience during onboarding and training.
  • Services:  Embodying a passionate service personality and influencing key partners that impact the new-hire experience to characterize personal engagements.
  • Live Training Elements:  Manipulating logistical elements of live new-hire learning to generate memorable learning experiences.
  • Measurement Strategy: Ensuring the success of each of the above key areas.

These intrinsic areas run parallel with the overall content training that my training department generates, and the combination of the two creates this well-rounded growing environment that allows a new employee to flourish.

The strategy I have found successful to generate these five key areas is to target the experienced frame of mind of our new hires during each pivotal touchpoint during their onboarding and training journey. This experience-centric approach helps focus our overarching vision of what success looks like in each key area.  Also, it supports our drive to generate passionate service delivery to new hires, design frictionless processes and technology enabling a seamless user experience, strive for continuous innovations, generate memorable live elements and implement an actionable measurement strategy.

We consistently drive this vision and strategy in the training L&D space to cultivate the culture of nurturing new-hire development.

How do you contribute intrinsic elements to nourish the growing roots of your new employees?

Rachel Thyne is senior SPC commercial learning & development operations specialist for Sanofi. Email Rachel at


About LTEN

The Life Sciences Trainers & Educators Network ( is the only global 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization specializing in meeting the needs of life sciences learning professionals. LTEN shares the knowledge of industry leaders, provides insight into new technologies, offers innovative solutions and communities of practice that grow careers and organizational capabilities. Founded in 1971, LTEN has grown to more than 3,200 individual members who work in pharmaceutical, biotech, medical device and diagnostic companies, and industry partners who support the life sciences training departments.

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