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The Brand of L&D

A few years ago, when I was completing my CIPD Level 5 in Learning and Development Management, I wrote about building an L&D brand. I described the process we went through in the organisation I worked in at the time to build a new L&D function with a strong internal brand. This process gave us an internal brand that I would argue was stronger than any other department. We became a department that could be trusted.

But it wasn’t just about a fancy name, a pretty logo and a strapline. There was more to it than that. It was about being effective and reliable business partners that delivered noticeable impact. It doesn’t matter how good your brand makes you look, if you’re not delivering what you need to it just won’t cut it.

It was interesting to talk to Paul Matthews at this year’s CIPD Annual Conference and Exhibition about what he describes as the three elephants in L&D with a forth sneaky elephant that will come and bite you. The forth, relates to the brand of L&D an area that he finds many L&D departments focus on first stating that they need to ‘fix the brand’ of their L&D department.

That’s not the place to start though. Start first with getting the other three elephants in check first and the brand will follow. Fail to do so and the brand will suffer.

Check out the video here for more detail on what Paul talks about.


I’m interested to hear your views. What’s the brand of your L&D department like? Which of the three elephants, if any, feature in your L&D strategy? Which ones need a little more taming?

And if you’re interested in developing the skills and strategy of your L&D department by getting CIPD qualified, talk to the team about our CIPD Level 5 Intermediate Learning and Development Management programme

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