With the business world in a constant state of evolution, often because of advances in technology, and the labor pool shrinking, companies need to go the extra mile if they want to keep their employees engaged. Your workers are an asset and, by helping them identify clear pathways for advancement, you can show your appreciation, boost morale, and even become an employer of choice.
Helping your employees craft career plans is an excellent way to differentiate yourself from other employers. It shows you are invested in their growth, development, and overall career success, creating a culture that feels supportive and positive.
If you want to know how you can assist your employees, here are some tips for creating career plans with them.
Identify the Pathways
Certain positions naturally connect to one another. Usually, they represent single steps up the career ladder, a direct line that keeps moving up. However, other options typically exist, involving slight lateral shifts along with forward progression.
Before you assist your staff with career plans, identify any existing pathways in the organization. Figure out which roles flow logically into others, along with those that are closely aligned enough where making a transition would be possible if the employee gathered the right additional skills.
If your current job descriptions are complete and thorough, completing the analysis is fairly straightforward. However, if you find you don’t have great starting information, you may need to update the descriptions before you proceed.
Talk With Your Employees
Once you have the pathways identified, it’s time for some initial conversations. You need to find out what goals and aspirations your workers have today, giving you an idea of which pathways may be of interest.
This is an important step because some employees may not want to head in the direction that represents the straightest line forward. Many professionals incidentally fall into a career, so where they are today may not be the best baseline for judging where they want to go.
Find Opportunities for Growth
After you’ve spoken with your employees, you can begin to help them forge a plan that will get them where they want to go. This may include furthering their education, taking part in training activities, assigning them a mentor, allowing them to job shadow, or anything else that enables them to acquire the skills, experience, and perspective necessary to take the right step.
As you create the plans, remember you can’t use a one-size-fits-all approach. Each worker is unique, so their goals and preferences will vary. Instead, customize each one, and make sure their input is guiding light throughout the process. Otherwise, you risk coming up with a path that isn’t very enticing, and won’t be as effective.
If you would like to learn more about how you can help employees create career plans, the skilled professionals at The Advance Group can help. Contact us with your questions today and see how our career planning expertise can benefit you.