What kind of magic do you think the Walt Disney Company uses to keep its large and sprawling staff of smiling, friendly and competent workers all on the same page? Disney learned quickly that internal employee and leadership development was crucial to the company's success.
Employee Development is Key to Business Growth
Leadership expert Robin Sharma states, “The competitive advantage of your business will be your ability to grow leaders without titles faster than your industry peers.” He goes on to say, “The quickest way to grow the sales of your business is to grow your people.” Even if you’re a one person business operation, as I am, it’s important that you continue to sharpen your saw to increase your capacity to upgrade the value and service that you provide to your customers. Sustainable success in business requires a commitment to continuous improvement at all levels within the organization. One must remain hungry for being the best at what you do, regardless of the size of your enterprise. I believe as a small business leader/owner personal development is a critical factor in building and maintaining a successful business. Investing in yourself, increases your capacity to deliver more value in your particular market, improves your customer satisfaction which often leads to word of mouth referrals and an increase of revenue.
One of the most common ways businesses lose promising employees is to think that because they have no promotional opportunities available, there’s no need for staff development. When employees begin to feel that their opportunities for growth are limited, those that have great expectations of themselves and what they can accomplish will eventually get frustrated, disengage and resign themselves to doing just enough to get by until they find a work environment that provides them with the opportunities to learn and grow within the company.
According to Paul Sarvadi, the “Human Resources” coach at Entrepreneur.com,“In today's economy, if your business isn't learning, then you're going to fall behind. And a business learns as its people learn. Your employees are the one that produce, refine, protect, deliver and manage your products or services every day, year in, year out. With the rapid pace and international reach of the 21st century marketplace, continual learning is critical to your business's continued success.”
Employee Development Builds Loyalty and Increases Engagement
Your employees want to be developed whether you have a promotional opportunity for them or not. They want to feel they are valued and that they can contribute to the success of your organization. When business leaders make a commitment to developing the seeds of greatness dwelling in their employees, their efforts motivate and boost the level of camaraderie in work groups which stimulates creativity and a results-oriented mindset. Do you have any idea of your employees' dreams and professional aspirations?
Our knowledge-service based economy is increasingly demanding that organizations engage the smarts of their workforce to remain competitive. Business leaders who are attune to this fact take a proactive approach towards cultivating smart thinking and smart behavioral habits among their workforce. By equipping their workforce with working knowledge that enhances their smarts they are better able to manage challenges and achieve the business objectives. What steps are you taking on a consistent basis to develop and engage the smarts of employees at every level in your organization?
Employee Development Influences a Business Culture
Leaders that are multipliers recognize how the collective habits of their workforce play a critical role in the organization's ability to execute strategies and achieve operational excellence and business success. The collective thinking and behavioral habits of a workforce establishes the culture of a workplace environment and whether excellence or mediocrity becomes its norm. Does your workplace environment reflect a culture of excellence or mediocrity?
Leaders that Build Winning Teams...Do This
Business leaders who are able to achieve and maintain operational excellence and business success understand the importance of engaging the reservoir of potential dwelling within their workforce. Their efforts to enhance the smarts of their workforce increases the probability that staff members will feel more respected and valued. As a result, more of them are willing to contribute a greater measure of discretionary effort which is most often necessary to accomplish business goals and objectives. Your staff doesn't care as much about what you know until you show them how much you care about them. Do your staff feel that you care about the challenges they're facing on and off the job?
Developing the leadership capacity of your employees at all levels in your organization demonstrates that you care enough to invest in their potential. Developing the leadership capacity of your workforce displays your commitment to helping them be better and do better at work and in life. When employees believe and feel that their employer cares about their well-being enough to invest in them, they are more apt to be loyal to their manager and display a greater measure of discretionary effort towards the achievement of the organization's goals and objectives. This is a win-win for everyone.
I'd like to know your thoughts. How important is it for the growth of a business to have a strategic plan in place to develop its employees? Share your comments below.
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Author Bio: Jackie Capers Brown is the CEO of Positive Change Coaching Solutions. She is an author, motivational speaker and Mentor to Game Changers. Feeling stuck? Move forward empowered by the My DRIVE Advantage™ Strategy. Start to manifest new possibilities in your life. Wake up feeling good about yourself and life. Read Jackie’s latest book,