1223 RB Hilversum
"The roles we know now will disappear. There is much more focus on what you already know, and based on that, you will be graded or classified. "
– Job van Dijk, Product manager
How we think about work has changed significantly in recent years. Especially the new generations (Millennials and Gen Z) don't just work for the money. They want to belong somewhere, make a positive impact, and bring out the best in themselves and their environment. These ambitions contribute to their job happiness. But how do you provide all your employees with the perspective they deserve?
By opting for growth paths!
What is a growth path? Check that in this article.
When this happens, many employees feel their talents go underutilized on a daily basis. If expectations aren't met and an employee decides to explore new opportunities, the organization loses both the talent invested in and the resources spent on hiring and onboarding.
Employees desire clear pathways for development, career progression, and necessary competencies. Understanding an employee's priorities and providing ample challenges is crucial.
In many organisations, compliments, pats on the back and rewards for good work remain scarce. While not every manager excels in people management, acknowledging and rewarding achievements significantly impact employee morale. It's crucial to recognize that employees feel valued when their contributions matter, emphasizing the importance of acknowledging and rewarding successes.
This hinders the growth and development of your employees. Modern companies are increasingly bidding farewell to job descriptions. They hire talent and provide the right resources to grow in skills that are relevant to both the employee and the organization.
An endless array of training options doesn't work either. Libraries of training and 'all you can learn' concepts bombard you from every direction. But if you don't know where to start and what truly is the best step for your career, we mainly observe that a thousand trainings result in low engagement (we call them flatliners) and unused learning platforms that you're paying for.
"Why are you taking a particular training, and does it align with your needs? This question is often not asked. Therefore, reflect on the activities and training: do they meet the requirements you need to fulfill to take your next step?"
- Job van Dijk, Product manager
For sustainable perspective, growth paths are the best choice! Setting up a growth path is actually quite simple and resembles something you might know from games. You offer an employee a glimpse of new skills just outside their comfort zone. And the crucial point is: you limit it to a maximum of 3. Because, in this case, less is truly more.
With growth paths, employees can see where they are heading. It also clarifies what they can actually achieve at the end of the journey and what changes once they have completed it.
When developing growth paths, you begin with the end. It may sound contradictory, but it's actually quite logical. Otherwise, you might end up with far too many options for each employee. By determining your end goal on the growth journey, you can establish the steps to get there.
First, identify the top 5 roles and skills that are most important in your organization. Then, using growth profiles, specify the competencies, skills, knowledge, and behavior that an employee needs to successfully navigate the growth path.
While vertical growth remains an option, growth paths offer an intriguing perspective for broader development. Vertical growth isn't suitable for everyone, and it might not always be feasible for every organization. With horizontal growth, you cultivate robust generalists equipped with the right skill set for your organization. It's a win-win!
Growth paths also prove valuable when the work is no longer sufficiently challenging. By introducing additional tasks through growth paths, an employee can further develop and potentially evolve into an expert in the field or create new opportunities for an internal career move. Thus, the growth path remains a dynamic guide for continuous growth and change.
By incorporating growth paths directly into your onboarding strategy, you enhance the overall employee experience. Those who benefit from an effective onboarding process achieve their full competency level in their role more quickly than their peers. This increases the likelihood of their continued engagement with the organization and strengthens their connection right from the very beginning.
Involve managers in this strategy as well. Clearly articulate the organization's goals and identify the personnel required to achieve them. Managers can identify and align opportunities within the organization with employees and their ambitions.
People want to contribute meaningfully to the team they work in and to your organization. Growth paths boost the engagement and dedication of all employees. Due to the clear structure, employees can see how they can develop within your organization over the coming years. Providing growth opportunities ultimately has a positive impact not only on retention but also on your growth.
If you ensure that each step is just outside someone's comfort zone, you consistently challenge your employees to look a little further. Have a conversation with Job today and ask him everything you want to know about growth paths for your organization!