For any manager, it’s a real shame to lose good people on your team. Employee turnover is also very expensive. Most companies invest thousands of dollars in hiring and training, not to mention loss of productivity during each transition. Yet, more than a third of employers are expecting to lose employees to competitors this year due to dissatisfaction over salary and advancement opportunities, according to a recent Glassdoor survey. Another study estimates that for every 10 months an employee is stagnant with no promotion or raise, they’re 1 percent more likely to leave the company. These statistics are clear evidence of many organizations’ deficiencies in internal leadership development programs.
So how do you prevent your most valuable employees from feeling frustrated and stuck without a clear path to advance their careers? Entrepreneur guest writer Sirmara Campbell makes a case for investing more in mid-level employees, not just entry-level and management, and maps out strategies for internal leadership development.
Focus on the Big Picture | When employees first accept a job, it’s important to have a conversation about your pay, training, and promotion philosophy. Clearly define benchmarks that are tied to opportunities for advancement. Not every employee is bound for top management positions. Some people are better at managing people; others are better at managing processes. Outline several internal leadership development paths that give employees options to grow as leaders with your company.
Improve Your Internal Leadership Development Programs | Continued learning programs are critical to keeping employees engaged and re-energizing those who have become disconnected. Depending on your company’s size and resources, you may have an internal leadership development department, or you may have relationships with external contractors to lead conferences and workshops with employees. Gregg Ward Group offers several programs catered to supplement a company’s leadership development options, including seminars on respectful leadership, executive coaching, management consulting, and more. Whatever path you take, managers who take the time to meet with employees regularly to discuss career performance and development areas are more likely to keep employees motivated to go the extra mile.
Stay In-Tune | Keep a pulse on your employees to ensure they are staying engaged, contributing to team meetings, and volunteering for new projects. If you’ve noticed they’ve become disengaged, this may be a sign that it’s time to break up the monotony by offering new responsibilities. It’s also important to recognize when employees are ready to take the next step in their leadership development.
Connect with Mentors | Great mentorship programs are the key to helping employees clearly define their course from mid-level to senior positions. Good mentors can help new managers process their feelings and provide perspective on challenges they’re facing along the way. Ultimately, mentorship programs help create a work culture based on respectful leadership and collaboration.
Encourage Accountability | Accountability is important for both employees and your company as a whole. Accountability for employees means establishing key performance indicators upfront and providing ongoing feedback to ensure they are working at their greatest potential and understand areas in need of improvement. Also, take an honest look at your company’s management composition. Are most of your leaders homegrown or are they hired externally? If you’re not promoting from within, ask yourself “why not?” The answer could be a weak or non-existent internal leadership development strategy.
Contact us to discuss options to build your business by strengthening your internal leadership development programs.