If you really want to motivate and engage your employees you need to understand what drives them and what creates their personal sense of career success. As a result, leading organizations are building highly productive and engaged teams through utilizing Career Planning Conversations.
If you don’t think it’s your job (or it isn’t a priority) to have Career Planning Conversations with your employees, be aware that your employees are expecting this help. Forbes reports, “Most workers believe it is an employers’ responsibility to teach career development: 74% say employers should provide professional-development training, 71% say they should identify job opportunities and career paths, and 68% say they should provide career-advancement mentoring.” And if employees don’t believe they have a career path within your organization, this directly impacts how they show up and how long they stay with your organization.
Career Planning Conversations also help:
- Attract top-level employees. Top talent is looking for organizations who actively promote career planning and career advancement opportunities.
- Develop your Leadership Pipeline with individuals who are invested in growing their career within your organization.
- Increase employee engagement while decreasing employee turnover. Your staff comes to work believing they are developing their skills and experience to help them advance their careers.
- Circumvent resignations and dismissals by offering adjustments to job responsibilities or roles, offering lateral moves, or providing career-changes that are better aligned to the employees’ needs.
Launching into a Career Planning Conversation
If your organization already engages in performance reviews, incorporate career conversations within that process. If not, start today by adding Career Planning Conversations to your next employee one-on-one meetings.
Here’s a step-by-step process for leading Career Planning Conversations which I teach during my workshop Retaining & Engaging Your Employees Workshop: A Manager’s Guide to Leading Career Conversations.
- Set up an individual employee meeting with each employee. If your time is limited, at a minimum, engage in these conversations with your top talent to avoid losing them to your competition.
- Ask each employee: What are your career goals and aspirations? Or, How do you want to grow your career with our organization? If your employees are unsure of their options, outline potential career pathways within your department or organization-at-large that align with their skills and talents.
- Help them close the Gap: Identify the specific skills and experience they need to develop to support their career growth. This is particularly important as employees often do not understand what key skills or experience they need to develop before being promoted. Particularly with Millennial workers and within unionized work environments there is often a disconnect between the employee’s performance and the skills required to be promoted.
- Suggest Career Tools which support the employee’s growth: Present opportunities including cross-training, mentoring, educational courses, stretch assignments, projects and acting roles to help your employees reach their career goals.
- Develop a Career Action Plan: This plan outlines what they are committed to doing to achieve their career goals. It is critical that the employee drafts their plans as: “The more an employee feels … they’re managing their own career, the more engaged and efficient and productive they are in their day-to-day work.” Source: Software Advice
- Champion their Success: Throughout the year and during your regular employee check-ins, touch bases to find out how things are progressing and demonstrate your ongoing support of the employee’s career goals.
A manager who goes beyond just getting the person to do their job and instead inspires them to work hard and be a top performer is a manager who knows their employees’ career aspirations and is funnelling those aspirations into meaningful work. As management expert, Tom Peters states: “Management is about arranging and telling. Leadership is about nurturing and enhancing.” and further, “Before you are a leader, success is all about growing yourself. When you become a leader, success is all about growing others.” – Jack Welch.
For more info about Career Planning Conversations read our articles: Attracting, Retaining and Engaging Your Employees; Employee Career Development Programs: Your Employees, Your Competitive Edge; and Building a Career Development Roadmap for your Organization.
Author: Joanne Loberg of JL Careers Inc. is a Certified Executive Coach and Internationally Certified Career Management Professional. She has a reputation as a highly sought after Career Consultant and she has been referred to as “an absolute expert at navigating the complex territory of career advancement.” Copyright JL Careers Inc. All rights reserved.
Need Help Developing a Career Planning Program for Your Organization?
Joanne Loberg, our Lead Career Coach, has over 20 years’ expertise developing career planning programs that are easy to implement and highly effective. From the Employee Workshop: Ignite Your Career to Retaining and Engaging Your Employees: A Manager’s Guide to Leading Career Conversations Workshop she provides customized solutions to help your organization retain, engage and grow your employees. Contact Joanne for more information.
Wishing you much career success!
Certified Executive Coach & Internationally Certified Career Management Professional
JL Careers Inc.
Looking for insightful, tailored career coaching or retirement planning? Contact us today to learn how you can fast-track your career and create a life you’ll love.
Wishing you much career success!
Joanne Loberg Certified Executive Coach & Internationally Certified Career Management Professional
JL Careers Inc