My blog post today also happens to be Strategy #12 in our ongoing video series on specific practical ideas to develop and grow your people. And today’s tip goes back to one of the basics – employee training. The specific strategy: jointly create a professional development plan, tailored to the individual employee.
Jointly create a tailored plan for professional development
There are two important words here – jointly and tailored.
Do it together
Jointly, because it should be an effort by both you and your employee. Encourage your employees to take an active role in identifying what job competencies they feel they’re lacking. Competencies are the skills, abilities, and knowledge needed to be successful in a particular or future role, and they can encompass technical knowledge and interpersonal skills.
Make it unique to your employee
And tailored, because it needs to be designed to fit the specific employee. There are a myriad of options you can draw upon to create a plan that is tailored to your employee. Even though I referred a moment ago to employee training, it is important to remember that professional development is not so much training as it is a state of mind. A philosophy of continuous learning is not constrained to sitting in a classroom.
In today’s connected world, there are so many ways to access knowledge that the real skill is not accessing information, but rather filtering what you’ve obtained from a variety of sources and practically applying it. So widen your definition of professional development to not just include formal in-person training courses, but to also consider online learning, reading of books and journals, following specific social media feeds, networking with industry peers and accessing the resources that come with professional memberships.
If you truly want to develop and grow your people, then investing time and resources into creating a professional development plan is a no-brainer.
What have been your experiences?
So what have been your experiences? Are you investing in training (from a variety of sources) to develop and grow your people? Are you getting the same from your leaders? I’d love to hear your perspectives. Please share by commenting below.
Previous video blogs in this series on developing and growing your employees were:
- Schedule regular one-on-one conversations with your staff
- Offer constructive feedback
- Or just access the whole series in our Video Archives