To get the best out of employees today, especially Generation Y workers, L&D managers need to connect employees with something to learn to employees who can impart that knowledge.
"Learning needs to be a social enterprise. It's a shift from teacher to broker," Crabb said, speaking at the CIPD conference in Manchester yesterday.
Assumptions about the best way to develop a learning culture in organisations needed to be challenged, he added. Instead of thinking people learn from those who are more experienced, today employees learn from everyone around them. Instead of excellence being defined by what one knows and does well it is defined by one's strengths and what one gets done. And instead of learning being through classroom approaches it is more effective in small bites of real-time learning on the job.
"You need to leverage the power of the people that surround you," Crabb said.
Facebook has scrapped the annual performance review in favour of constant real-time feedback and moved from a focus on job role to experiences. It concentrates on making an impact in everything it does.
"One of the greatest challenges in organisations is to get rid of the crap that prevents people making an impact," Crabb asserted. "We actively talk about reducing stuff that causes inertia in companies as that's what slows them down."
The key to being a successful organisation, he said, was to move fast, be bold, be open and build trust.
"Giving people the means to have an impact is fundamental. Create networks, leverage the power of friends and allow people to be their authentic self, not their LinkedIn self from nine to five," he advised.