Written by Anna Bernstein on 15 Dec 2015
In business today, the only constant is change. There are countless innovations, technological developments and shifting goalposts, which make it seem as though just maintaining the status quo can be a challenge. However, these changes are most often implemented in order to make businesses more efficient. As demands change, so must the people both for personal development and to help the business to continue to innovate. An ambitious company needs to employ driven individuals who are keen to develop and their potential can only be realised through education. The more people know, the more they can contribute to the success of a company.
Managers can rarely rest on their laurels. Every day it a battle to maintain productivity and keep staff motivated in order to get the best performance from them as well as aiding them in the development of their careers. The best way for a manager to create a culture of continuous learning, is to prove to others that they are willing to embrace this philosophy. Staff members must be convinced of the benefits that continuous learning can bring both to the team and to the company’s goals as a whole. Managers must be willing to demonstrate that they are willing to challenge themselves, show some of their weaknesses and the actions they are going to take to address them. By demonstrating the power of gaining new knowledge and skills, team members can become inspired to better themselves.
If your Human Resources department is working effectively, then your company will be populated by talented individuals, waiting to be challenged. A good manager will be able to recognise the strengths within a team and create custom learning programs in order to nurture talent. Some individuals may appear reluctant to embrace continuous learning and instead focus on their everyday tasks. A good manager will find new ways to communicate with these individuals and help them to work outside of their comfort zones and to embrace positive career development. Continuous learning is an excellent way to help uncover hidden talents and help employees express themselves in new ways.
Goals are important to benchmark the progress of employees. That’s not to say that there will be a full curriculum or even exams. Every team or even every individual should have their own programme of learning tailored to meet their own requirements. These should be discussed at the beginning of the exercise with achievable goals set based on the amount of time dedicated to learning as well as the resources made available. An innovative company should not be afraid of promoting talent so incentives should be utilised in order to reward team members who achieve or exceed their goals.
While managers may hope that team members will take it upon themselves to learn new workplace skills in their free time, it’s unrealistic and mostly impractical. Suitable learning materials must be provided within the workplace. This could be something as simple as setting up a small library of relevant learning materials or it may involve bringing in speakers from outside the organisation to share knowledge. The most important resource that can be allocated to employees, to help them better themselves is time. With adequate time to do their job and for self-improvement, the performance of employees is certain to rise.
To find out more about how we can help your business keep learning, visit our performance academy or contact us today