Develop Employee Potential
Professional Development Small Business

Ways to Develop Employee Potential

Employee development initiatives can help take your business to the next level and foster growth and inclusion.

With the world heading towards progress, diversification, and inclusivity, employees are no longer viewed as individuals with specific skills and can only do one job. Instead, they are valuable assets that can be better contributors while the company also scales up. Looking at the potential of each individual means having to consider their growth and development. You should be looking at your employees as worthy investments.

However, determining employee growth and development areas can be a challenge. Although companies recognize the need to develop employees, some are still hesitant to roll out development programs. One of the main reasons for this is the risk of employee resignations. As this undertaking requires long-term investment, they may not be confident about their future returns. 

With that said, helping your employees grow should not have to be costly and require long periods.  Here are four tools to help you develop employee potential. 

Psychometric Tests

If your goal is to develop employee potential, you should considering rolling out psychometric tests. You will have to frame this creatively, considering most of the time when people hear the word ‘test’ or ‘exam’, a bad memory from school always immediately comes to mind. But while people tread down memory lane upon hearing the word, psychometric tests are not the same. Instead, they shed light on an individual’s personality, interest, and aptitude.

What are Psychometric Exams?

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Psychometric exams are different because of the rigorous process to craft one. This gives employers the confidence that it will make sense whatever the result may be. Psychometric tests are usually standardized. Standardization is the process of making the test fit across various demographics and cultures. This ensures that it will be less biased. It can also help accommodate people from different walks of life.

Standardized tests have also undergone validity and reliability testing, making the test and its results mathematically sound. This means that the assessment is scientifically crafted and is agreed upon by experts in the field. 

Associated Benefits to Develop Employee Potential

Nowadays, some companies incorporate psychometric tests in the recruitment stage. This could be advantageous as it gives them a clearer picture of the candidate’s personality. It may also shed light on how the employee will fit with the company’s culture. If the candidate is brought onto the team, having information on their interests can help company HR teams with succession planning and retention programs that meet employee needs.  

Because it might be quite challenging and costly to conduct tests independently, some businesses partner with talent assessment platform providers, such as Thomas International. Not only does it provide their HR team convenience, but more importantly, it makes it easier for them to understand results and look beyond skills and experience to improve employee performance. 

If you plan to incorporate psychometric tests in your organization, outsourcing could be a good option. This is especially true if you haven’t done this before. Don’t let inexperience with this discipline stop you from working to develop employee potential. Seek out professional advice for your business when needed.

Needs Assessment and Competency Framework

A needs based assessment and a good competency framework can help the business stay on track, especially if the business is growing. This is because as the company grows, its needs change. Key competencies that can help maintain and develop it further may also change over time. Conversely, a growing business means leveraging employees’ potential.

That’s why a scaling competency framework paired with a specific and data-driven needs assessment can help you gain insight into the blind spots of the company. Ultimately, this will enable the business to grow more while working towards the goal of developing employee potential.

A company’s needs and pain points require competent people to fulfill them. Identifying these can help you discern which ‘potential’ to develop. Furthermore, while drafting a competency framework may be slightly off-topic, having the management understand the competencies of the current employees can be a directive when it comes to recruiting more talents to fill in the business gaps.

This means knowing which talent to hire. This may also create the opportunity for you to upskill current employees depending on business needs.

Coaching and Mentoring

As a manager, part of your job is to train and coach employees. This also extends to you as a leader, to be as trainable and coachable as everyone else in the organization. However, it’s high time to up the ante and forget about sitting down with an employee to review KPIs.

You can do this by levelling with your employees and seeing them eye-to-eye. One of the most common mistakes among coaching sessions is putting too much emphasis on hitting monthly targets. Doing this puts unnecessary pressure on the employees. It may come across that you are blaming them.  Instead of taking this route, ask what happened and what could’ve been improved.

Instead, use and manage their personality and aptitude profile in the workplace to understand where they’re coming from. In some cases, employees may have failed to hit the target because of a personal problem. Employees may be going through some difficult times which are hampering their ability to perform. Or, it may have been a misalignment of their skills with the business needs. In this case, transition them over to a more befitting business unit where they can thrive and grow.

Placing your employees in roles that best suit their skillset is a great way to accelerate small business growth and keep everyone happy, motivated, and productive.

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Training and Seminars

Training is an excellent tool for employee development as it can target hard and soft skills. You can design programs focusing on training and development according to the business and employee needs. Internal training is a great way to develop employee potential.

Plus, a business can use various methodologies to keep things interesting. Some platforms for trainings include lectures, hands-on exercises, videos, and podcasts. Offer some free lunch to get even more attendance!

At the end of the day, training will help your employees improve their current roles and support skills development for future positions.

Aside from one-on-one training opportunities, you can also hold company-wide seminars. These generally help everyone improve, and may include financial literacy training. Workshops like this meet people’s basic needs which cultivates a sense of improvement and empowerment. This is yet another way to help them develop their potential.

Develop Employee Potential – Summary

Like in every learning environment, developing an employee’s potential starts with understanding their personality. It is also beneficial to determine how their minds work, as well as their personal behavior and disposition. Especially in the workplace where employees are preoccupied with their work, self-improvement and upskilling are neglected. 

Luckily, HR teams have tools and resources to support talent and skills development.

4 comments on “Ways to Develop Employee Potential

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