Each company is interested in investing in the career development of their employees. Providing the employees with training programs doesn’t only improve their knowledge and make it more specific, it also positively influences the productivity of the whole company.
It’s not surprising at all that companies are ready to spend a lot of money on employee training programs. Reportedly, only a couple years ago American companies spent over 70 billion dollars on employee development, and the numbers keep growing. But how can you make sure that all this money doesn’t go to waste and will fulfill its main purpose?
Here are 5 ways to help your employees work on career development and make it as effective as possible.
Work on IDPs Together
Individual Development Plan (IDP) is one of the most effective ways to help an employee figure out the best tools for career development. But it’s not the call for leaders to do everything themselves and decide everything for the employee.
One of the ways to create an effective IDP, apart from considering the main business goals of the company, is to talk to the employees and figure out what they see important in their work that needs to be improved in order to ensure the fulfillment of the business goals.
The best way to do this is to discuss IDPs with each employee individually. Employees see the work of the company from the inside and feel the lack of skills more than any leaders can. Besides, this will only help the whole team grow even stronger.
Ask More Coaching Questions
Apart from working on the IDPs, leaders should seek every opportunity to ask their employees as many questions as possible, namely, coaching questions. The trick of using coaching questions is to make an employee figure out the solution individually. Questions like “What do you really want?” with regard to the working process will make the employees consider all the aspects of the working process and figure out individual functions for each employee.
After an employee has completed a task, leaders can revisit these questions to make sure that the employee has learned the lesson or fixed possible mistakes. This is a great way to “cement” new skills and knowledge because employees learn them from their own experiences.
Make Them Think Outside the Box
Companies often make a mistake by compartmentalizing the employees, i.e. fix them at particular departments and provide training programs that only relates to the specifics of work of a certain department.
If you’re eager to help employees work on their career development, make them fulfill the responsibilities that they are not used to having. “At work, we try to engage employees in all kinds of activities, that really refreshes the way the whole team thinks”, says Sarah Johnathan, HR manager at write-my-essay-for-me.com, “You never know who’ll come up with the best solution.”
The best thing about this is that it will help leaders see the side of their employees they’ve never seen. For the employees, it is the opportunity to try themselves in something different. And who knows, maybe this opportunity will help them figure out what they really want to do. Leaders will only benefit from it.
Give Proper Feedback
Feedbacks are only appropriate when there’s a need for them. Don’t overload your employees with unnecessary feedback, which can sometimes be seen as unnecessary criticism. To give constructive feedback, it is essential to make sure that employee really needs it. Constructive feedback involves a focused, logical and appropriate answer that will help an employee work on possible mistakes and motivate an employee to continue improvement.
Leaders here should act as guides, suggesting certain action and providing support. Constructive feedback excludes making any comparisons, so never compare the works of two different employees. You can compare the previous and current achievements of a particular employee but never try to set another employee as a standard to others.
Be an Example
If you think that your employees need improvement, it doesn’t mean that you are perfect as a leader. Leaders should follow their IDPs as diligently as their employees. If you are serious about achieving personal goals, this would be a great example for the whole team of employees. This models their behavior and serves as motivation to improve productivity.
In general, it positively influences the company’s corporate culture and sends the message to the whole team to be more committed. So set an example with your own work on career development.
Working with employees on their career development is a very intricate thing that requires a lot of attention and motivation on both sides. Leaders should put faith in their employees and encourage them to follow all the steps to achieve the goals. Employees will definitely respond in a positive way, which will help the whole team grow stronger.
Tom Jager is a professional blogger. He works at Proessaywriting. He has a degree in Law and English literature. Tom has written numerous articles/online journals. You can reach him at G+ or Facebook.