Career Development, Business Coaching and Training
Whilst some will actually prefer it and be reluctant towards any sort of change, the majority of employees within a company will be unhappy if they feel that they have reached a plateau where their career is concerned. For many, the advancement of their career and the added responsibility and rewards that come with it are a key driver for their performance and commitment towards their workplace activities.
They give their all in order to impress management who will then be willing to offer them a promotion when the opportunity arises. In so doing, this effort translates into high levels of productivity, output, new ideas and innovation; all of which contributes greatly to the achievement of the business's goals and targets.
Business coaching and training courses play a significant part in the personal development of an individual, not to mention underperforming teams who are in need of greater cohesion and skills such as communication. The learning of new skills in conjunction with making use of business coaching sessions with either an external business coach or a manager who has obtained the ILM accredited Level 5 Coaching qualification can be a powerful combination for career development.
Whilst managers are often keen to provide the opportunity for training for their staff members so that they can advance their skill sets and be able not only to take on additional work but also to do things to a higher standard, it is important for individuals to keep in mind that quite often they will need to be the ones who drive their personal development forward rather than relying upon a manager to tell them what and when they need training. This can include asking managers for additional responsibility, suggesting possible training courses that will benefit them now or in the future, or even embarking on courses and qualifications in their own spare time outside of work.
In various business coaching articles we have seen how providing business coaching to employees can greatly assist and speed up the acquisition and development of their skills and/or methods of working and the cooperation with other employees of the company. However business coaching can also be utilised to great effect in the career development of workers from their individual point of view.
Many employees will regard potential advancement through promotion as an essential component of any employment package. If this is not present, even if they are paid quite well they are likely to feel stuck in a rut with no prospect of their job role and level of responsibility ever changing. In this situation they will soon begin to lose motivation which in turn will result in lower productivity and a poorer overall standard of their work as they put less effort and dedication into it.
So whilst many managers will view business coaching as a method for developing employees to become more proficient in their current job role and more productive at what they currently do, business coaching also develops the skills that will be needed by that employee when they are moved to a different position within the organisation, either on a permanent basis or as cover for a colleague who is away on holiday or off sick.
In terms of career development, business coaching can not only be used to develop skills but also to identify those particular skills in which the individual is lacking or not strong enough in, and can highlight additional training requirements e.g. first line management training courses if they are being developed with the intention of one day becoming a manager for a particular department, or indeed of the entire company!
Interested In Becoming A Business Coach?
Similar to teachers in schools and other educational facilities, business coaches obtain a tremendous sense of pride and achievement through helping an individual progress and advance their career by overcoming an obstacle which was holding them back, sometimes for years.
Managers too also benefit greatly from being qualified business coaches as they can provide coaching to either all of those working for their company, or just those in their department for whom they are responsible for. By increasing their skills and making them more effective at the job role, they improve the performance of their department and/or the company as a whole.
For more information, see our page about becoming a business coach by clicking here.
Managers Giving Career Advice Through Business Coaching
A key reason many managers have for providing business coaching to their employees is to assist in the development of their careers by preparing them for future roles within the organisation. Unfortunately a mistake that is made by many is to try and impose what role and tasks the manager thinks the employee should advance into without actually listening to what they want to do with their career.
Business coaching sessions can be a tremendous assistance to any employee, but particularly to those at the start of their career journey who will often require a lot of guidance and assistance as their development takes shape and the potential opportunities available to them down the line. Managers or external business coaches who have a lot of experience will often prove to be a tremendous asset for the inexperienced person to learn from, imparting their wisdom and knowledge regarding what to do, as well as the pitfalls in which to look out for along the way on their career path.
Just like a pushy parent though, managers need to be careful that their good intentions of giving advice does not end up turning into them dictating to the employee what they should and should not do.
It may be the case that ultimately the employee wants to do a job which will result in them leaving the organisation and moving to a different one in a slightly different industry. This can sometimes be hard for managers to take, who either hoped that the person would rise to prominence within their company, or feel that they have somehow been "betrayed". Whilst they will not like to spend the time and resources in providing business coaching and developing a person to have them leave straight after, in reality that person is likely to stay with the organisation for a good amount of time yet if they feel they are being developed and have opportunities for growth. Even if they do leave one day, their advanced skills will still provide a tremendous benefit for the company until they do. And who knows, maybe they will stay where they are for decades to come.
Why Development Plans Should be Comprehensive
The Need for an Effective Plan
Any effective plan needs to be thorough and comprehensive, with a staff development plan certainly being no different. A brief, incomplete or wishy-washy plan will contain omissions and a lack of detail and definitive actions which will be necessary for the employee to develop their skills and become more effective in their current job role, as well as having the capability to perform suitably if they are promoted within the company.
Who Should Come Up With The Plan?
Development plans should be devised and created between the manager and the employee rather than the manager simply coming up with a plan themselves and handing it to the employee to work through. This is because an employee who has been involved in the creation process will take a far greater ownership and interest in its successful implementation, including embracing any training courses or business coaching they are required to attend. Employees who want to attend development sessions will take in and learn far more information than those who are ordered and instructed to attend.
Devising the Action Plan Also Identifies Training Needs
The drawing up of a comprehensive action plan also allows for the identification during the process of the exact areas in which an employee has had little or no experience or training in before, and which they are likely to require in order to develop their skillsets.
This action plan will likely be created during one or a series of business coaching sessions between the individual and a manager or external business coach where the current abilities of the individual are discussed, including an honest and frank discussion about which areas the person has a requirement to improve in and become more proficient. This can often be hard for an employee as they may be unwilling and reluctant to mention any deficiencies they have in case it portrays them in a bad light, which is why the role of the business coach is so important to facilitate and encourage this necessary discussion.
A Comprehensive Employee Development Plan Also Includes What Support Will Be Provided
The development plan not only needs to include what the employee needs to do, but should also contain how the manager and the company will support and assist the person with their development. The best plans will often break down and fail to be put into practice due to a lack of support or resources that need to be provided but fail to materialise when they are actually needed.
Will Business Coaching Develop Staff So Much That They Will Leave?
Employees With Many Qualifications May Be Eyeing up a Different Job
One reason for many managers to limit or even eliminate completely any budget or time for training and development of their staff is a fear that developing them will result in them being so knowledgeable and talented that they will leave the company. Managers are reluctant to invest in training up one or more of their employees if the person then were to leave in order to get a higher paid job for example.
It May Be Bad... But The Alternative is Worse
The truth is that staff members can and do leave companies. The provision of training and business coaching for employees may in some ways be considered a risk by some, but the reality is that it is essential for the creation of a workforce which is efficient, productive and achieves the goals and objectives of the organisation.
A poorly trained workforce will not reach its maximum potential without proper training to increase the skills of the individuals, not to mention their team working and ability to work together.
Business Coaching and Training May Actually Prevent an Employee from Wanting to Leave
As well as training being necessary, it can actually have an opposite effect to the fears that many managers have, insofar as employees who are receiving business coaching and training will feel like the company is serious about their personal development. If this is combined with the potential for advancement and increased responsibility, and subsequently an increased pay structure that normally accompanies it, then employees will have very little incentive to leave.
So by investing in training and coaching not only will the business benefit from a more talented and productive worker, but it should also actually increase the chances of that person staying with the company.
Using Business Coaching to Identify and Put Right Issues Affecting the Employee
Additionally, engaging in business coaching with employees allows a manager to have an open and frank discussion with that person in order to identify any issues or problem areas which are causing concerns for that individual.
bviously a worker is much more likely to stay with a company if they feel happy there, so using business coaching to identify and set about addressing any reasonable concerns they have can be tremendously important to prevent employees from leaving the business.