The Learning & Development PodcastThe Learning & Development Podcast

L&D Leadership Today With Simon Gibson

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There’s often a huge difference between the rhetoric around L&D leadership and the reality. It’s not all about creating a Learning Culture and sailing a course to L&D nirvana. The reality is it’s a lot messier with a lot of hustle, winning some days and losing many more. In this episode, presented by 360Learning, Simon Gibson lifts the lid on his reality and how L&D leadership today is evolving and changing within these turbulent times.


  • Hiring people from diverse backgrounds and disciplines results in a more innovative and resilient team.
  • L&D is evolving fast, so there are some big skill gaps, e.g. data analysis. 
  • Those professionals who can prove the positive impact they have had on the business are the most likely to get hired.
  • Get under the skin of what the managers you work for really need.
  • Getting managers together to discuss what challenges they face and how they overcome them is incredibly instructive for them and you. Discovery sessions are powerful.
  • Being clear about what you are trying to fix and staying focused on that is essential.
  • Analysis is essential, without it you cannot prove that you are actually closing the skills gap.
  • Consumption does not equal competence. If that knowledge is not retained and applied on the job, the training is useless.


'Theory is one thing, but show me how, show me when and what that meant. Build that body of evidence.'

'They're bound by restricted and empowered by the culture.'

'Go build that commercial muscle, go find out how things work, go find out how things are made.'


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Simon Gibson Bio

Simon is Group Head of Learning & Development at Marks & Spencer and an experienced executive-level People Leader/Chief Learning Officer. He has a passion to deliver meaningful commercial change and transformation via learning, organisational development, and talent initiatives.

You can follow and connect with Simon via:


X / Twitter: @simon1gibson


David James 

David has been a People Development professional for more than 20 years, most notably as Director of Talent, Learning & OD for The Walt Disney Company across Europe, the Middle East & Africa. 

As well as being the Chief Learning Officer at 360Learning, David is a prominent writer and speaker on topics around modern and digital L&D. 


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The Learning & Development Podcast

This is a fortnightly topical podcast show for L&D professionals hosted by David James and presented 
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