Classical Learning Techniques Instill Values into a Company’s Culture

Novareté utilizes scientifically proven classical learning techniques to engage employees in daily activities that help develop and reinforce your core values.

  • Repetition – Dilemmas Posed
  • Engagement – Dilemma Responses, Giving Kudos, Discussion, Contributions
  • Debate – Discussion
  • Curiosity – Dilemmas Posed, Wikis, Analytics
  • Feedback – Dilemma Evaluations, Receiving Kudos
  • Recognition – Receiving Kudos, Point System
  • Competition – Dilemma Benchmarking and Alignment, Point System
  • Anonymity – Dilemma Responses, Discussion, Giving Kudos, Contributions

Research supports the use of these learning techniques as a means to help employees understand and embrace company values through an ongoing cycle of participation and education.

To learn more, download our research report:

Infusing Values Into Corporate Culture


People learn more effectively through repeated exposure to a message. Research demonstrates that repetition makes the information appear more valid, while also increasing perceived agreement with and acceptance of the message. Frequency of exposure enhances persuasion and makes information more accessible in our memories, causing it to seem more familiar when it is encountered again.

  • Repeating the presentation of a stimulus, also known as priming, is one method for enhancing fluency. (1)
  • Because fluent processing of a statement gives rise to a sense of familiarity, it suggests that one must have heard something similar before, which increases acceptance of the statement. (2)
  • Repetition increased the persuasiveness of weak and strong arguments when little processing of message content occurred. (3)
  • Creative, theme-based, active learning activities delivered as a blended learning strategy can be effectively threaded through the organization to create a consistent message, over time. (4)
  • Organizations do not adopt a culture in a single day; instead it is formed in due course of time. (4)
  • Unless values are repeatedly emphasized in a variety of contexts, character education will not stick. (5)


High-involvement and technology-based approaches to training are powerful methods for transferring tacit and complex knowledge to individuals. Use of these techniques by both businesses and business schools is on the rise because they are more effective than traditional training media, such as presentations, videos and textbooks. Research indicates that active involvement leverages our inherent motivation to learn, while enhancing our ability to process complex information by connecting it to real-life experiences. Additionally, training experiences that help us move from superficial encounters with others to mutual dialog establish strong bonds between individuals and deepen our understanding of each other.

  • Today’s workforce thrives in an environment where learning is more informal, social, and integrated, on-demand 24-7. (4)
  • It is critical for ethics learning activities to be integrated into practical day-to-day activities. Presenting information in small, bite-size chunks, often and through blended channels, helps your audience filter the information into practical knowledge. (4)
  • By 2015, more than 50% of organizations will rely on high-involvement, technology-based simulations to train individuals and business partners. (6)
  • More than 90% of business schools adopt simulation and high-involvement experiences in designing their training curricula. (6)
  • Group-based training provides an environment where these behaviors [individual, intrinsic motivation during the learning experience] are more likely to occur, since participants may draw on one another for social understanding, observations, and reflections. (6)
  • Experiences that stimulate introspection … can deepen one’s sense-of-self. Those experiences that cause people to move beyond superficial encounters with others and into mutual self-disclosure and dialogue establish stronger bonds between people and deepen their understanding of one another. (7)
  • The advantages of group learning … First, otherwise reluctant individuals can be pulled into an experience by the group as a whole and … find safety in numbers. Second, peer learners can be a source of orientation, stimulation, and social support, and can aid in interpreting what’s going on and what it means. And third, there is the cohort effect whereby a group begins to see itself and is seen by others as having a unifying identity. (7)
  • Peer interaction and involvement was found to be one of the most important factors that drive a quality-oriented corporate culture. (8)
  • Simply mounting plaques on the company walls declaring corporate values is not sufficient. In fact, this approach often trivializes them. (9)


  • Debate forces the participants to consider not only the facts of a situation, but the implications as well. Participants think critically and strategically about both their own and their opponent’s position. (10)
  • Debates have been defined as an educational strategy that fosters clinical reasoning and thinking skills, as well as heightens awareness of attitudes, values, and beliefs. (11)


  • The object of curiosity is an unconditioned rewarding stimulus: unknown information that is anticipated to be rewarding. (12)
  • A brain imaging study confirmed the importance of a well-known but often under-utilized condition for enhancing learning: curiosity. [The] study showed that [brain] structure…seems to be behind the intellectual pleasure we get from adding a new item to our store of knowledge. (12)
  • “I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious.” – Albert Einstein (13)

Feedback and Evaluation

Feedback is a vital component of any learning process. While feedback must convey the accuracy of the learner’s response (e.g. correct vs. incorrect), research indicates that it is even more beneficial for the feedback message to include additional information that fosters learning. Adding an explanation to feedback on “answer accuracy” enables us to transfer that knowledge to new, untested situations.

  • Feedback is considered a critical component of any learning process because it allows learners to reduce the discrepancy between actual and desired knowledge. (14)
  • Feedback with an explanation produced superior performance on new inference questions. Therefore, the explanation that accompanies a “correct answer” seems to be particularly important at helping individuals transfer the knowledge to new, untested situations. (14)
  • Gamification…allows learners to measure their progress, receive regular feedback, work as teams and solve challenging problems, all while learning. (15)
  • After-event reviews (AERs) help learners to switch their mode of information processing from automatic to conscious. (16)

Recognition and Rewards

High performing companies understand the importance of giving employees recognition and rewards to validate and demonstrate the value of outstanding work. Research indicates that this positive reinforcement enhances employee behavior and leads to performance improvement, and that contingent rewards and recognition have a powerful impact on learning new behaviors. Rewards that enhance feelings of trust and provide recognition help raise employees’ awareness of company support.

  • Discretionary rewards that are symbolic of trust and recognition are related to perceived organizational support. (18)
  • Organizational recognition was associated with greater affective commitment. (18)
  • Recognition by your peers makes you feel valued, and does so in a significant way. This is because only your peers truly understand the skill, time, and effort of the finished project. (19)


  • [Student] survey results, and their similarity along the years, suggest that the combination of game theory with the use of friendly competitions provides a strong motivation for students; helping to increase their performance. (17)
  • Gamification…aids learning by making it fun and encouraging friendly competition. (15)


Enabling individuals to participate in learning anonymously provides a safe method for voicing their authentic viewpoints while avoiding direct confrontation. Research indicates that allowing group members to keep their identities private helps them learn more by increasing their willingness to participate in discussions, while reducing the effects of peer pressure and interpersonal relationships. Facilitating frank and productive discussions is a key goal of collaborative learning, and respondent anonymity in group discussions enables this objective more readily than face-to-face interactions.

  • By using a system that helps group members conceal their identities, individuals are less affected by interpersonal relationships and peer pressure. Therefore, they are more willing to participate fully in discussions, learning more from the process as a result. (20)
  • Group members whose contributions were anonymous generated more comments, were more critical and probing, and were more likely to embellish ideas proposed by others. (21)

Index of Cited Resources

  1. Jacoby, L.L., & Dallas, M. (1981). On the relationship between autobiographical memory and perceptual learning. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General , 110, 306-340.
  2. Weaver, K., Garcia, S. M., Schwarz, N., & Miller, D. T. (2007). Inferring the popularity of an opinion from its familiarity: A repetitive voice can sound like a chorus. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology , 92, 821-833.
  3. Moons, W. G., Mackie, D. M., & Garcia-Marques, T. (2009). The impact of repetition-induced familiarity on agreement with weak and strong arguments. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology , 96, 32-44.
  4. Ershaghi Hames, Marsha (2014). LRN Report: 20 Years in Ethics & Compliance , 6-7.
  5. Bryant, Lauren (2014). What is character and how do we get it? Glimpse , Volume 3, Number 1, Spring 2014, 34-38.
  6. Magni, M., Paolino, C., Cappetta, R., & Proserpio, L. (2013). Diving too deep: How cognitive absorption and group learning behavior affect individual learning. Academy of Management Learning & Education , 12, 51-69.
  7. Mirvis, P. (2008). Executive development through consciousness-raising experiences. Academy of Management Learning & Education , 7, 173-188.
  8. Srinivasan, A., & Kurey, B. (2014). Creating a culture of quality. Harvard Business Review. Source:
  9. Nader, F. (2014). How we built a new company culture. Harvard Business Review Blog Network . Source:
  10. Instructional Strategies Online, April 2014. Saskatoon Public Schools. Source:
  11. Hall, Dawn (2011). Debate: innovative teaching to enhance critical thinking and communication skills in healthcare professionals. The Internet Journal of Allied Health Sciences and Practices , 1. Source:
  12. Kang, M.J, Hsu M., Krajbich, I.M., Lowenstein, G., McClure, S. M., Wang, J. T., Camerer, C. F. (2009). The wick in the candle of learning: Epistemic curiosity activates reward circuitry and enhances memory. Source:
  13. Hoffmann, B. (1972). Albert Einstein – Creator and Rebel . New York: Viking Press.
  14. Butler, A. C., Godbole, N., & Marsh, E. J. (2013). Explanation feedback is better than correct answer feedback for promoting transfer of learning. Journal of Educational Psychology , 105, 290-298.
  15. Nikravan, Ladan (2011). Games Create Learning Through Competition. Chief Learning Office Magazine [Electronic Version]. Source:
  16. Ellis, S., & Davidi, I. (2005). After-event reviews: Drawing lessons from successful and failed experience. Journal of Applied Psychology , 90, 857-871.
  17. Burguillo, J. C., (2010). Using game theory and Competition-based learning to stimulate student motivation and performance. Computers & Education , Volume 55, Issue 2, September 2010, 566-575.
  18. Wayne, S. J., Shore, L. M., Bommer, W. H., & Tetrick, L. E. (2002). The role of fair treatment and rewards in perceptions of organizational support and leader-member exchange. Journal of Applied Psychology, 87, 590-598.
  19. Green, Steven (2012). Social Recognition Programs and Why They Matter [Electronic Version]. TemboSocial . Source:
  20. Jong, B., Lai, C., Hsia, Y., & Lin, T. (2013). Effects of anonymity in group discussion on peer interaction and learning achievement. IEEE Transactions on Education .
  21. Jessup, Leonard M., Connolly, Terry, & Galegher, Jolene. (1990). The Effects of Anonymity on GDSS (Group Decision Support System) Group Process with an Idea-Generating Task, 1.