When it comes to developing employees, most organizations only focus on their high potential employees. However, this can be a huge mistake. In order to develop your entire workforce, you need to take a more holistic approach. This means that you should develop your high potential employees and your low potential employees simultaneously. In this blog post, we will discuss 9 steps that you can take to develop all of your employees!
1. Define what “high potential” means for your company
So, what does “high potential” actually mean? There’s no one answer that fits every organization, but at its core, being a high-potential employee means having the ability to grow into leadership roles. This might be based on factors like talent, skillset, work ethic, or any number of other qualities
To figure out what it means for your company, start by thinking about the kind of leader you want to develop. What qualities would they need to have? Then, consider what sort of employees you already have who might be able to develop into that role.
Once you have a good understanding of what being a high-potential employee means for your company, you can start to develop a plan for how to help them grow. Moreover, there are many employee development plan examples out there that can give you a good starting point. Just remember, the key is to tailor your plan to fit your company’s specific needs – there’s no one-size-fits-all solution.
2. Assess employees’ skills and potential
Of course, you can’t develop your employees if you don’t know their strengths and weaknesses. And, more importantly, what they’re capable of. By conducting a skills assessment, you can get a better understanding of where each employee stands and what kind of development plan would be most effective for them.
A skills assessment can also help to identify any gaps in your employees’ skillsets. If you know what skills your employees are lacking, you can make sure to focus on those areas in their development plans.
3. Coach and develop employees using a tailored approach
Naturally, you can’t develop all employees the same way. Understand what motivates each individual and develop a plan that will work for them.
Some may require more frequent check-ins, while others may need more freedom to experiment. The key is to coach each employee in a way that meets their needs so they can reach their full potential.
When you take the time to develop a tailored approach, you’ll see greater results from your employees – and your business will be better for it.
4. Encourage risk-taking and innovation
To develop a high-potential employee, you need to encourage them to take risks and be innovative. This means creating an environment where they feel comfortable trying new things and failing.
One way to do this is to give employees the opportunity to work on projects that are outside of their comfort zone. This allows them to develop new skills and knowledge, while also expanding their horizons.
Another way to encourage risk-taking is to provide employees with the resources they need to be successful. This includes things like access to training, mentorship, and opportunities for career growth.
By encouraging risk-taking and innovation, you’ll help your high-potential employees reach their full potential.
5. Give employees the opportunity to learn and grow
In order for employees to develop their skills, they need opportunities to learn and grow. This can be done through training programs, mentorship relationships, and stretch assignments. By providing employees with these opportunities, you are investing in their development and showing that you value their growth.
Employees who feel like they are constantly learning and growing are more engaged in their work and are more likely to stay with the company. They are also more likely to develop into high-performing employees who contribute to the success of the organization.
6. Offer feedback and recognition
Another way to develop high-potential employees is to offer feedback and recognition. Feedback shows employees that their work is valued, and it also gives them an opportunity to learn and improve. Recognition is a key part of motivation, so be sure to give credit where it’s due.
When you give feedback, try to focus on the positive. For example, “I really appreciated the way you handled that difficult customer” is more effective than “You didn’t handle that customer well.” And be specific – “Great job on that project!” is more meaningful than “Good work.”
7. Reward progress and success
Never underestimate the power of positive reinforcement. When employees feel like their hard work is being noticed and appreciated, they’re more likely to keep up the good work. Consider implementing a formal recognition program that gives employees the opportunity to earn rewards for meeting specific goals.
You can also show your appreciation for individual employees by writing personal notes or giving small gifts on special occasions. These thoughtful gestures can go a long way in showing your employees that you care about their development and success.
8. Celebrate the diversity of thought and experience
If you want your team to truly succeed, you need to create an environment where everyone feels comfortable sharing their ideas. That means celebrating the diversity of thought and experience that each person brings to the table.
When employees feel like their voices are being heard, they’re more likely to be engaged and motivated to do their best work. So don’t be afraid to encourage open dialogue and debate on your team. It’s the best way to ensure that you’re making the most of everyone’s unique talents and perspectives.
By creating a culture of inclusion, you can develop high-potential employees at every level of your organization. And that’s good news for everyone involved.
9. Help employees grow their networks
Last but not least, employers should encourage high-potential employees to develop their networks both inside and outside of the organization. A strong network can help an employee become more visible, access resources, and develop new skills.
Organizations can support networking opportunities in a number of ways, such as providing funding for professional memberships and conferences, hosting internal networking events, and connecting employees with mentors. By helping employees develop their networks, employers can create a pipeline of high-potential talent that will benefit the organization for years to come.
Developing high-potential employees requires a thoughtful and individualized approach. By taking the time to assess each employee’s strengths, weaknesses, and goals, you can create a development plan that will help them reach their full potential.
While there is no one-size-fits-all solution, following these nine steps will set you on the right track. Moreover, making the effort to develop your high-potentials will result in a more engaged and productive workforce, which is good for business. Good luck!