Do you want your team to be more productive, deliver better products, and increase profitability? Sure most of us want that from our team, so how are you going about getting there? One often overlooked tool is to provide training and development to your team. Provide development opportunities for everyone and the company will benefit and be set to grow.
Many of the typical training and development programs are focused on task related skills which help the employee do their tasks better and often has very visible results in their performance. Reducing mistakes and rework, or increasing through put are tangible benefits of training. However, the developing of people is a bit less tangible but equally valuable to the organization. Here’s why:
- Increase employee loyalty. People who have been given the opportunity to grow within their current organization are more likely to feel a deeper connection and will be more loyal to the company.
- Improves work environment. When people feel valued at work they are happier to be there and the workplace becomes more positive in atmosphere. This in turn increases employee satisfaction with their jobs.
- Increases innovation. Innovation comes from new ideas and when people feel valued and that their input is important they will be more engaged in finding new ways to do things – spurring innovation.
- Improves organizational flexibility. If employees are given the opportunity to improve their skills, both technical and interpersonal, then they will be more capable when new opportunities require them to do new things. This will help the organization adapt more quickly in a changing world.
Some of these can be hard to measure but will show up in employee turnover, customer and employee satisfaction survey results. When employees are excited about being there they will get more done, with better quality, and they will stay within the company reducing the need to hire and train new people regularly.
One important piece of making this really work is as a leader you must be personally engaged in training and development. Not only development of your employees, but of yourself. It is critical that people seeing the senior members of the company learning new skills, new technology, or whatever will help your organization grow. This sets the tone that yours is a learning culture and everyone benefits by learning. Nothing is more discouraging than the message that “employees” need developing not “managers”.
Times are still tough and yet there is the start of a positive turn in business. To take advantage of this, companies need to be flexible and quickly adapt to new opportunities. Preparing your team by providing training and development will help them meet the new challenges the future brings.
How have you developed your team? What have you done to develop your own skills and abilities?