Finding great talent is stressful, time-consuming and extremely difficult in today’s market, but more challenging is keeping the talent you have so they will stay and continue to be engaged. Successful onboarding, on-going training and re-investing in your employees to help them reach their full potential may be just some of the answers. Even knowing that information, organizations don’t seem to be making a lot of progress. Gallup reported that less than 25% of employees today feel engaged in their company.

Who is responsible for employee development? The answer is always the same; employee development is the shared responsibility of management and each employee. When employees are knowledgeable and management shares information and resources, it enables employees to increase their knowledge, skills and abilities, thereby increasing their overall value to the organization.

Why develop employees?

  1. Employee development activities help employees grow and develop essential skills, abilities and knowledge. It makes them better at their current job and creates the potential for future opportunities within the organization.
  2. When job responsibilities are clear and useful, the employee realizes they are not a dumping ground and that management is trying to help them develop.
  3. Developing employees can help to cultivate a sense of loyalty and attachment to a project, manager and/or the organization.
  4. It increases the credibility of your organization. The organization develops a reputation as a good employer.
  5. Discussing skills that are essential to be successful in the job not only improves communication between the employee and manager but establishes shared expectations and outcomes for the employee and the manager.

By encouraging employees to take ownership of their development, it allows them to strive for personal excellence. In Part II we will look at some steps you can take to help employees’ grow and develop and how you can build and develop your team.