KPCB’s 2015 Internet Trends Report reveals that most millennials rank training and development opportunities as the most valuable employer benefit. This trend is encouraging because investing in people benefits the entire enterprise.
Giving everybody a chance to be their best is a force multiplier It transforms the organizational culture into one where individuals shine in a way that advances the enterprise. This is alignment and enterprise integrity. This creates a coordinated crew in full command of the ship’s direction, an orchestra that plays in tempo and in tune.
A big variable is leadership. Leaders must be resourceful to engage people with fresh eyes, build on their unique strengths, offset their individual weaknesses, and fashion a full course of action to move the organization forward by improving one person at a time. I’m reminded of the Robert Heinlein quote: “When one teaches, two learn.”
For leaders who may be dubious about the time, energy and money required to invest in workforce development, here are some questions for consideration that may help clarify the way ahead:
- Does my organization have clear, communicated education, training and development plans in place?
- Are all individuals, including me, improving both professionally and personally?
- Is our approach to workforce development driven by a customer focus?
- What are my strengths and areas I can develop further, and can all employees answer this for themselves?
- Do individuals know how to move forward to improve themselves and their situations?