Learning and development are two of the biggest assets your company has at its disposal. A workforce that is willing to expand its skillset will be more productive and adaptable than one that stagnates.
Training doesn’t end with onboarding. While you should have solid instruction for the basics, you also need ongoing learning opportunities. Workers should be able to delve deeper into their job roles or develop skills that allow them to move to other areas of your company.
Promoting internally typically costs less than hiring someone new. It also makes employees happy. They will feel like the effort they put in matters and that they don’t have to look for opportunities elsewhere to get to where they want to be. Professional development is the perk employees really want.
Studies have revealed that organizations that are engaged in employee development saw increased sales and as much as double profits compared to those that aren’t engaged. The numbers also show that over 90% of workers will stay at their current job longer when the company invests in their development.
Providing training will also help you find your future leaders and subject matter experts.
Younger generations expect more career development opportunities when looking for jobs. This is even more important right now, during a time when job seekers have the upper hand.
As 2022 comes to a close, every business owner and manager should be thinking about how they can motivate their teams to learn and develop their careers in 2023. What can you do to get started?
· Turn Advanced Training into a Reward
Motivate employees by offering advanced training opportunities to those who earn them. It’s hard to motivate workers if training is always viewed as compulsory and limited.
When you introduce new courses into your training program, you can build excitement and interest. Give top performers the chance to enroll in an advanced course that could open new job opportunities for them.
When it is treated like a reward rather than a requirement, employees are more inclined to work for it. Just make sure you are offering something of value in return. Finding a good LMS that connects to a course marketplace can help you discover new training content that will grab attention.
· Create Jobs That Allow for Interesting and Novel Work
Consider being flexible about how you define your job roles. Adding more challenging, interesting tasks to a job could help inspire a desire to learn and improve in employees. It pushes them outside of their comfort zone and builds confidence with each new success.
This also encourages workers to take an interest in your training program. They can see what new skills they can learn that will better prepare them for novel work.
This may also set them off on a whole new career path, allowing them to skill up and specialize in areas that your company needs.
· Use an LMS That Lets You Customize Training Paths
A successful training program is all about personalization. Each employee has a unique set of skills, expectations, and goals. Your training opportunities should cater to those as much as is reasonably possible.
Make sure your LMS lets you customize training paths for maximum benefit. You should be able to create different paths or curricula for various departments and job roles. Employees should be able to review these learning paths and know what they need to do to reach a goal or become eligible for a new position within your organization.
Having the information readily available and easy to understand will help push career development within your team.
Don’t forget to find an LMS that has a full suite of tools for online training. You can also reduce training time with eLearning, freeing up more hours for other things.
· Learn About Employee Goals and Career Paths
Before you can put together a curriculum that suits your workforce, you need to know more about your employees. What are their goals? Do they hope to move into a different department or job role? Do they have short or long-term plans for their career path?
Having this information will help you decide which courses to bring into your training program.
A good way to begin is to conduct a survey. Some LMS platforms offer built-in survey features that will automatically compile results for you.
· Schedule Regular Performance Reviews
Regular performance reviews give workers and management a chance to discuss how things are going or address any concerns or questions. They are also another way to encourage continuous learning.
If the worker is struggling with any part of their job, a refresher course could be recommended to get them up to speed. Managers or supervisors can also use this interaction to suggest possible future learning that would complement the employee’s current skillset.
· Establish a Mentoring Program
Some employees want to expand into new areas but have no idea how to get started. A mentoring program is another good way to guide them.
A mentor is someone who should understand how the business works and have a good grasp of what the employee wants to move into. They should be able to answer questions and provide motivation.
Having a direct connection with another employee who has the skillset they want to develop is a big benefit. The trainee can ask questions and learn more about what it’s like to work using the skills they hope to obtain.
Mentoring also helps form bonds between employees that are beneficial if they work together later. Someone who went through a mentoring program will feel more confident when they move into their new position. They may have already networked with other professionals in that area thanks to the program.
· Incentivize Upskilling with Rewards
Along with access to advanced training, you can also offer real rewards for upskilling. Employees who complete a course or learning path could receive recognition for their efforts.
Many LMS platforms support certification, with certificates that can be printed or go on an employee’s record. This is great, but you can sweeten the deal by adding a little more once the new skills are put into action.
Give workers who complete a course and demonstrate their ability a gift card or an extra day off. It doesn’t have to be a big and expensive prize, but something to recognize their hard work. Show them that you appreciate their efforts and are paying attention to their progress.
· Listen to Worker Feedback
Your team is going to be your biggest source of information on training and career development. Ask for their feedback to find out what areas your training program may be missing.
Employees will also be more motivated to check out an updated course catalog if they know that they influenced changes and additions made to it.
Motivating your team in 2023 begins with a good learning management system. Visit LMS.org to read LMS reviews or to learn more about how technology is changing the way we train employees.