Developing People and Skills

Once, during a meeting, I asked an Operations Manager if she thought of her employees as an investment or a cost? This question came about as a result of low performance reviews and high-turnover rates that affected customer service outcomes. What do you think her answer was? My next question was, in regards to training, how often training happened and who provided the training? I also questioned the structural leadership and how roles were being defined.

I firmly believe in the importance of developing people. It is essential for any organization to ‘invest’ in training, leadership skills and mentorship programs.

The value of investing in your employees is insight and expectation. Insight and expectation formally tell everyone in the company where WE are headed as an organization; it also governs the way the company acts, feels and what is expected within the business culture.

Skills to teach or value are:

Intangible skills:

  1. Leadership
  2. Critical Thinking
  3. Effective Listening and Communication Skills
  4. Interpersonal Skills
  5. Positive Attitude
  6. Team Work! Team Work! Team Work!

Functional Skills:

  1. Speaking
  2. Writing
  3. Planning
  4. Negotiating
  5. Managing Risk
  6. Marketing
  7. Problem Solving

Core Skills are job specific; the most effective way to insure the quality of core skills is through consistent feedback, training and coaching. Core skills are the underpinnings of growth through competence and value. Each member of the team SHOULD understand all aspects of their job, including the:

  1. Occupational
  2. Technological
  3. Mechanical

Not Developing Staff

Nikos Andriotis, noted tech industry writer, wrote The Cost of NOT Implementing A Corporate Training Program. In the article he states that one of the greatest losses an organization can incur is intellectual property leaving the organization. He also points out two additional issues that should have us all concerned; 1) the total cost of losing and training a new employee, which can equal tens of thousands of dollars; and, 2) high turnover.

Companies that fail to recognize the value of training their employees risk losing them to competitors. But why? Because everyone wants to feel that they are valued and relevant. We all have an inherent need to feel as though we are reaching for our fullest potential.

Effective leaders know how to encourage their staff and maximize their employees’ contributions. Examples of this include better customer service, better products, and better experiences for customers. Encourage, foster, and reinforce employee development; the benefits far outweigh the cost of losing an employee to a competitor.

Lastly-Develop yourself first!

Lee S.

Image: Training by Nick Youngson CC BY-SA 3.0 Alpha Stock Images









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