Due to the rapid advancements in technology and artificial intelligence, companies have been pressured to recreate their talent management and capital gain approaches. Companies have also felt more pressure to produce more personalized and instinctual brand experiences for their consumers.
Businesses are in need of workers who can keep up with the demands of society. Some attributes companies are looking for include: flexibility, technological proficiency, and people management.
Employers have used flattering perks and high pay for top talent employees. Yet, these employers still struggle with a high turnover rate. One work study forecasted that one out of four workers would leave their place of employment in 2018. When asked why, approximately one-third had said that upper-management was not supportive and that there was no room for growth.
A clear solution would be for companies to offer better and more effective training and development programs. Unfortunately, it is not as easy as this. There are many business owners that already have extravagant programs in place and still struggle in attaining their goals. The main problem is that these programs must be more catered towards the employee; and yet they are not.
In order for any program to work effectively, it must be focused on the user and the user’s needs. By keeping the employee’s needs in mind and a priority, a business and ensure success, commitment, and understanding.
It is necessary to keep training programs intact so that people can learn new skills. However, a business must keep in mind that this is only the first step in creating a successful environment. The most effective growth occurs only after the formal development programs are completed. The most growth occurs within the everyday workplace in which the workers face real challenges.
Here are some tips for business leaders to use to check-in and help employees:
1. Ask employees questions to gain awareness. Employees need to know that you understand and are aware of their work-issues. The easiest and fastest way management can be there for employees is by asking questions and finding out the needs of the workers. In doing so, leaders can offer suitable and ideal learning opportunities for workers.
Schedule personal meetings with each team member to check in with their current tasks. Encourage the employee to explain which skills they feel are easy for them and which they feel they need more guidance with. Investigate which areas they feel are challenging and why they feel that way.
Some questions you can ask your employees are:
- What do you find most intriguing and rewarding in your job?
- Are there any tasks that you are finding a challenge?
- What steps are you making to attain your short-term and long-term work goals?
- Are there any other projects or responsibilities that you would like to be involved with?
It is important to listen intently to your employees and create a judgment-free atmosphere. It may help to repeat (in your own words) what your employees bring up at the meeting to ensure you fully understand what they need. It may also help to limit distractions, such as a computer, and take notes with a pen and paper.
2. Create more opportunities. Take action and create opportunities for people to help develop your employees in the skills that they identified. Learning moments can be small yet very important in involving and encouraging employees to practice skills and gain confidence.
Every challenge your employees bring to your attention is an opportunity for you to help them grow. Regardless if the struggle is personal (e.g. communication skills) or practical (e.g. technology software), it is important to address the issue. In doing so, you are showing your employees that they are valued and appreciated. It also allows managers to upskill and retrain individuals as new obstacles occur in the everyday work environment.
3. Vary learning opportunities. Always keep in mind which experiences are best suitable for the personal needs of your employees. Take into consideration the employee’s tenure, level of experience, and adaptability when choosing learning experiences. Smaller experiences, such as a new or necessary skill, may be suitable when employee’s can depend on a more experienced team member for support. Bigger learning experiences are more appropriate for those employees who can take risks and step out of their comfort zones. These employees may have prior experience attempting certain tasks and can use their skills to work more independently.
For example, you have a few employees that need to strengthen their public speaking and presentation skills. The employees who are more shy and less experienced with public speaking may benefit more in a smaller group setting. You may consider placing them in a small lunch meeting to learn about public speaking and presentation skills. For the employee who is more experienced and more forward, they may feel comfortable presenting and learning in a larger setting; such as a large company meeting.
You may also consider allowing your more experienced employees to discover and seek out their own growth opportunities, but still keep structured learning experiences for the less experienced employees.
4. Provide consistent feedback. Set clear expectations for your employees and remember to always provide feedback. This can be one of the most valuable sets of information someone receives. As your employees carry out their day-to-day tasks, work alongside them to create shot- and long-term goals to strive for. Point out what your workers are doing well and which things you feel they can still improve on.
It is important to be patient through this process. Contemplate upon the work your employees have done and tell them what you feel they are excelling at. It is also important to discuss their failures without any judgment. Regardless of their failures, always point out their efforts in trying something new. In doing so, you can ensure employees are actively applying things they have learned and are readjusting themselves for improvement.
5. Time management. Before creating new opportunities, determine how much time you have available to allot to such a task. What level of support are you able to provide as a manager? It is important to set realistic goals and expectations for yourself.
It is important to remember that you do not have to give all of the support on your own. In some situations, you can pair up certain employees with informal mentors or other leaders for support.
When business leaders apply such principles to the workplace, it will be hard to miss the growth around you. Such principles can help retain those top talent employees as well. Open communication from leaders is necessary for employees to feel appreciated, understood, and content within their work environment.