Using TikTok Principles in Your Next L&D Project: How to Convince Your Stakeholders

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Using TikTok principles inside your learning and development projects is a great way to engage learners inside your organization. Here at Anchored Training, we talk about TikTok a lot. We are met with some confused looks, but once we dive into these principles and explain the value of using short “valuetaining” and engaging videos to support your learning, we find that people are excited about the potential for transformation. The biggest concern is convincing the higher-ups that this is something they need to be doing. Let’s take a look at some methods you can implement to help you on your journey toward change!

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Don’t miss this intriguing webinar from HRDQ-U

What TikTok Can Teach Us About Learning & Development

#1: Do Not Expect Sweeping Change

Change is the hardest thing for people to get around. When you’re offering a new solution, especially one as shocking as asking your stakeholders about using TikTok inside your L&D strategy, it takes a long time for someone to be an early adopter. They want to see tried and true; they want to see the idea you’re encouraging in action.

Understand that it is a slow build. Again, people are typically not raising their hands to be early adopters. But they also don’t want to be left behind. Once you find those early adopters and test out the kinks, the decision makers will be more willing to try little things and adapt to the change you are encouraging.

Here is another truth for you – a lot of times, stakeholders might be completely on board with your new idea for something different, but they’re also concerned about their learners and how they may or may not adapt. Leading and consulting with empathy is a great way to show them you acknowledge these concerns.

Someone once told me that when a cruise ship starts to make a turn, you don’t feel that turn right away; It’s a very slow turn. It’s the same thing when you want to introduce something new to your organization. When it comes to learning, you can’t just go from zero to 100 in two seconds flat. It really is a slower build to get everybody on board and comfortable.

#2: Lead with the Benefits and Value

Now that your expectations are set with reality, you can develop your L&D strategy. You need to help decision-makers understand the benefit of adding in this new form of learning. We don’t talk enough in L&D about the benefits of what we do. We tend to just push out content from a compliance standpoint as opposed to communicating “What’s in it for me?” But if you explain how using this style of video from the perspective of what’s in it for the organization, the learner, the department, and the ROI, it’s going to be a lot easier to gain buy-in. Lead from a place of benefits and value, and you’ll see people who want to jump on board. When they understand how it will benefit them, they’ll want to engage more in conversation and dialogue around introducing that new change.

#3: You Have to Sell It

I won’t lie, you have to be a salesperson. As consultants, we don’t love to say this, but we’re salespeople. And I don’t just mean selling to get new business; we’re trying to sell a new approach that we believe is in the best interest of our learners.

Pro Tip: Address Their Pain Points

The way that training has been done for so long, for so many organizations, is probably not working, so you need to understand what that key stakeholder is thinking and speak to their pain points and fears. When you explain how your new solution, TikTok principles, is going to speak to that key pain point, you’re showing them you understand what their struggles are and you’ve thought of a solution to help address the problem. This is when they begin to feel safe, take down their walls, have more trust in you, actually want to hear more about the solution, and can really think about whether that solution is the appropriate one for their problem.

#4: You Have to Show Them

It’s time to make some TikTok videos! You can’t just talk about these changes, you’ve got to be about them. Use sample scenarios to show them how this new approach would work. Our advice would be to create a series of fun, TikTok style videos that tells one cohesive story speaking to one of the major pain points you are trying to solve.

The Ultimate Takeaway

My biggest piece of advice with introducing TikTok style videos to your L&D strategy: Chip away at change.

Don’t expect grand change. You have to understand who your audience is, and how gradual improvements help you get to your end goal. If your end goal is using TikTok-style videos for L&D, then you need to find small ways of proving the benefit and value. Whether it’s taking those principles and applying them to your next eLearning project or using it as marketing material for your next training program, those little things allow change to be normalized. Eventually, you can get to where you are hoping to: highlight the best of what the old school offers and introduce new school changes that will maximize your results.


Headshot of Vanessa Alzate
Vanessa Alzate

Vanessa Alzate is the Founder and CEO of Anchored Training. She received a BA in both Communications and Political Science from Rutgers University and an MS in Corporate and Organizational Communication from Northeastern University. For over a decade, she has consulted with many mid-large organizations in industries ranging from pharmaceutical sales to fashion to develop training strategies tailored to each individual organization and team.

Throughout her career, Vanessa has excelled in assisting companies and individuals to expand their industry knowledge through innovative eLearning and classroom curriculum, while continuing to add consistently to her own education and training. She is passionate about keeping learners at the forefront of all learning initiatives and finding new and inventive ways to active, collaborate with, and engage learners empowering them to grow personally and professionally.

Connect with Vanessa on LinkedIn, TikTokInstagram, and Youtube.

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