Soon after Christopher Whalen joined Skillsoft six years ago, he found himself working closely with a global team for the first time.
“I’d been part of global companies before, but I’d never worked so closely with colleagues in other countries,” the culture and inclusion specialist said. “I soon realized that people have culturally different styles of collaborating and holding meetings.”
Rather than navigating those cultural differences through trial and error with potential for faux pas or misunderstandings, Whalen turned to Percipio, Skillsoft’s flagship learning platform. “I turned to the diversity, equity and inclusion courses that we offer, and things clicked,” he said.
What did he learn? “It isn’t about changing the way I do things or expecting other people to change; it’s about adapting and understanding how those differences can integrate for deeper collaboration.”
Skillsoft’s DEI resources are only one facet of its Percipio platform’s robust learning offerings.
For Talent Acquisition Coordinator Nicole Guerrera, Percipio has been a launching point for her own journey toward professional advancement and deep learning.
“I’m at a place in my career where I wake up and want to find ways to be better for myself and for my teammates,” Guerrera said. “On days when I want to find new ways to excel, I log into Percipio and find something I’m interested in — or even something I’m not interested in. That’s the beauty of Percipio, and my time at Skillsoft has been nonstop learning so far.”
While Skillsoft seeks 10 percent growth for course completions with external partners, the company’s benchmark for its internal team is 40 percent growth. According to her colleagues, Guerrera exemplifies this commitment to learning. Dubbed the “Queen of Percipio” for her leading use of the platform, Guerrera has spent time digging deep into Skillsoft’s Aspire Journeys, which are focused on guiding learners from their current roles to where they’d like their careers to go next.
“My time at Skillsoft has been nonstop learning so far.”
The multimodal courses feature targeted readings, hands-on practice and insights from industry leaders. But Guerrera has one favorite feature: “I enjoy the modules that feature people on a similar journey telling their stories and experiences,” she said. “With DEI specifically, people will share times they’ve messed up or embarrassed themselves. It’s humanizing to hear how other people are learning as well.”
In addition to the career-focused Aspire Journeys, which center around the most in-demand jobs for Skillsoft learners and the top skills for those roles, Percipio also offers the ability to customize Aspire Journeys for internal teams.
“Our employee advisory group for LGBTQ+ individuals and allies created an Aspire Journey for Pride month,” Whalen said. “The course was focused on learning about the community, taking a loving approach to yourself and others, understanding biases and leading to create a more inclusive organization for LGBTQ employees. Building the course was so flexible, from using Skillsoft’s stock content and YouTube videos to uploading your own resources and materials.”
EMPLOYEE ADVISORY GROUPS AND SUPPORTIVE COMMUNITIES
With four employee advisory groups and an Inclusion Council, Skillsoft provides space for colleagues to connect and grow a community of belonging within the company.
Skillsoft’s employee advisory groups include:
- SUPERBIA: The LGBTQ+ community and allies at Skillsoft
- WINS: The women's initiative for networking and success at Skillsoft
- UNITY: Skillsoft’s network for underrepresented racial and ethnic groups
- WE ARE ABLE: The disabilities and neurodiversity community and allies network at Skillsoft
Aspire Journeys offer a window into Skillsoft’s mission. “We propel people in organizations to grow together,” Whalen said. “We’re creating lilypads of opportunities, so when you’re ready to take your next step, there’s something there waiting for you.”
“We’re creating lilypads of opportunities, so when you’re ready to take your next step, there’s something there waiting for you.”
Beyond the platform’s user-friendly interface and wide breadth of courses, Skillsoft is on a journey to provide opportunities for transformation through learning for both employees and the company as a whole, one course and completion badge at a time.
Randal Vegter spends each day focused on “trying to unlock the potential of Skillsoft’s employees.” The vice president of talent enablement and culture counts culture surveys, internal learning, mentorship programs, onboarding and performance reviews among his tools — but his vision is even broader.
In Vegter’s words, “It’s everything that says, ‘Here’s where I am and here’s where I want to be. What are the tools? What can I use to get to that point?’”
Vegter himself didn’t have professional development goals when he entered his current role. He joined Skillsoft through its acquisition of Codecademy and began with an ambitious set of ideas and initiatives for his new team. “But I then got an executive coach through Skillsoft, and that has been transformative to me,” Vegter said. “There was so much about working through the transition, my goals and how I think about myself, which has changed my entire life — and that was really surprising.”
MANY ELEMENTS, ONE SKILLSOFT
Since 2021, Skillsoft acquired Codecademy, Pluma and Global Knowledge. Together, the newly unified company continues to advance the mission of democratized learning for its customers and internal team. “A lot of my role revolves around measuring the engagement within our organization and helping to drive our culture in the direction we want as we merge four companies into one,” Whalen said.
Skillsoft continues to invest resources in building a unified culture that supports growth for both the company and its individuals. “When we moved, we became one company,” Vegter said. “What better place to advance together than at a place like Skillsoft, where we have incredible resources and people.”
Whalen also found immense value in Skillsoft’s resources as he grew into a leadership role at the company. “When I first came to Skillsoft as a customer success manager, I loved the thought of empowering organizations to empower their own people,” he said. “And Skillsoft content really helped me when I needed to have my first coaching conversation. And when I needed to have my first challenging conversation, I was able to lean into the content.”
So when the opportunity arose to focus on talent and inclusion, he knew it was a way to bring those resources for others. “Now in this role, I get to celebrate, acknowledge and empower the people who empower the people who empower the organizations,” he said. “The ripple effect is just incredible.”
That ripple effect is at the heart of Skillsoft’s work — and with each new opportunity, the team continues to amplify possibilities for their colleagues, clients and beyond.