10 Ways to Encourage Employees to Achieve Professional Development
Corporate professional development activities might not seem like a priority, but your employees must continue to learn and grow professionally. If your company’s professional development program is unstructured or informal, then it is time to develop a learning mission or vision. A work culture of learning assumes that each employee must build skills and knowledge, knowing that their personal growth helps your overall companies’ development.
So how do you encourage corporate professional development in your organization?
Here are ten practical ways.
1) Conduct reviews regularly.
Supervisors must be checking in with their teams, to ensure that the needs of the employees are met. Conducting reviews yearly with one-on-one meetings is a tactical way to communicate with your team. The reviews address improvements to be made and appreciate the positive contributions of the employees.
Giving constructive criticism is the most challenging task as you want to encourage your employees without letting them feel demotivated.
Nowadays, enthusiastic millennials are joining the workforce, and they aspire to regular feedback at work. Thus, constructive and optimistic feedback cultivates openness in the workplace. Performance reviews allow you to underscore any skills gaps and encourage employees to obtain additional skills. Providing necessary training and following up with the employees once they have finished their training increases employee accountability and productivity. Often, it has been seen that frequent feedback ends once an employee “gets their feet wet” after training. Managers/leaders share the responsibility of their subordinates once training is provided, though we recommend that communication is vital in every relationship.
2) Encourage personal development.
Providing future career paths and training opportunities at your company is an excellent way to motivate employees to learn. By working on both culture and multifaceted incentive structures, leaders and managers can encourage employees to learn and grow in the workplace. Ultimately, making them believe they are valuable contributors to the organization.
We, Stephen W. May, offer purpose-built professional learning and development solutions to help businesses prepare their teams for the future. Get to know more about corporate professional development programs.
3) Allow flexible timing.
There are cases in which employees are interested in courses during their regular office hours, and companies have encouraged them to consider flex time. Flex time, requires employees to work a set number of hours but during days and times that work with their pursuits outside of work.
40% of employees leave a company in just one year due to inadequate employee training.
4) Offer learning opportunities.
With the change in environment, technology, and industry, management should make their workforce dynamic and versatile. By offering leadership development and training, staying updated on unique opportunities like local learning events and online courses.
Encouraging continued learning develops the potential of each employee. Knowledge transfer proves intrinsic to business success as employees learn from each other. Suppose an employee develops an interest in pursuing personal hobbies and wants to reach a healthy work-life balance. Streamlining professional development activities inculcates learning opportunities among employees, which works for the betterment of any organization.
5) Small opportunities offer significant growth opportunities.
Give employees enough opportunities to take risks and pitch new ideas. This will help them in brainstorming, researching, and coming up with innovative ideas. Representing the company at a conference, client meeting, or trade show are such small opportunities, but that can mean a lot to employees.
Small opportunities increase the confidence of employees and make them feel that they matter on the job.
6) Grow team-building efforts
Work culture plays a vital role in encouraging employees to perform well. Positive work culture is what employees look for while searching for jobs and retaining employees over time. Whereas, negative work culture doesn’t motivate employees to perform well or communicate effectively.
Don’t let employees’ potential stagnate.
Encourage continued learning and create paths to success with your employees. Offer regular feedback with team-building efforts will eventually develop a loyal team committed to business success.
7) Offer both financial and intrinsic rewards.
A combination of financial and intrinsic rewards can help in your overall employee incentive system. Employees feel more encouraged to grow on the job and develop their work performance if they are encouraged by intrinsic and extrinsic rewards. The feeling associated with succeeding at a difficult task and feeling valued motivates employees to perform well.
8) Offer exciting and challenging work.
Employees feel motivated and satisfied in a company when they develop themselves and are learning new things. Modify the job description of your employees and encourage them to work beyond their comfort zones. Expose your employees to new tasks, guide and train them rather than boxing employees in rigid role descriptions. This will help employees in learning and developing new skills.
9) Link employee growth to business outcomes.
If you can link an employee’s development to organizational benefits, employees feel rewarded with this recognition. When employees know how their efforts and skills will help in a company’s development, they feel motivated to perform well. Professional development training programs will help individuals in aligning their personal growth with business development.
10) Consider employees’ feedback into account.
Seek feedback from your staff about training and development initiatives, and use it to inform your training decisions. For instance, if your team members question the relevance of a specific training module, be open-minded to their feedback and adjust your approach if required.
Involving employees in training programs will not make them feel frustrated, and you’ll listen to their perspective.
Encourage a work culture that is open and where employees feel comfortable talking about what they experience in training and development programs.
Contact us, Stephen W. May, to know more about our training solutions that can revolutionize your human resource management approach.
Examples of activities that can contribute to corporate professional development:
- Pursue certificates, accreditations, or other credentials through educational programs.
- Attending local, regional, national, and international meetings, conferences, and workshops. sponsored by professional organizations.
- Coordinating events sponsored by the organization.
- Enrolment in formal degree programs, courses, or workshops.
- Presenting papers at conferences and workshops.
BUILD A COLLABORATIVE TEAM
If employees share the information they have learned and the activities they are doing, others will follow suit. Make corporate professional development a norm at your organization. Be a role model for your team.