You walk up the steps.
You ring the doorbell.
You wait patiently ... and eventually hear footsteps.
The door swings open and you exclaim:
“Trick or Treat?!”
But why should you have to choose between a trick and a treat? Who even makes the final decision on which one you get? I’ve never fully understood the phrase. But this isn’t a blog about the semantics of Halloween slogans. This is a blog about talent development! And this … this is a cheap attempt at making a link between a holiday and what we love to talk about, as blogs are wont to do.
And how are we going to do that? Well, we’re going to provide you with some tricks to up your talent development game! And what do those tricks come with? Great outcomes…or treats!
It’s cheesy, I know. But I think it’s sweet.
Trick #1: Do a better job of defining “great” employee performance
In order to develop your people to where they need to be, we first need to set the proverbial “dot on the wall.” Helping your people reach their full potential does not involve setting the bar at “good,” but at “great.”
Our pal Kris Dunn recently did a video on this subject in his TalentTalks series.
The treat: Your people aim for the right target
Setting expectations is incredibly important to keeping your teams aligned and driving towards a common goal. The obvious treat that comes with this trick is improved performance, but if things land well, your people will be more motivated than ever to go above and beyond.
Trick #2: Let your employees make some choices about their L&D content
Learning departments are great at sourcing learning content that lines up with business goals, but sometimes it can get a little too “high-level.” The fact is, while learning departments have a great handle on what the business needs as a whole, it’s tough to get into the weeds and identify each individual contributor's needs from a learning standpoint.
This is why you should give your people a chance to take the lead on (at least some of) their learning efforts. The fact is, they know what knowledge they need better than anyone else. And as long as employees are kept accountable for keeping their learning choices relevant to their job, it can be a great way to get your people to upskill in a way that works for them.
The Treat: Learning is personal, enjoyable, and relevant
Self-driven learning means your people learn exactly what they need to know at the time of need. No waiting for course development or purchasing by the learning team, no red tape, just your people getting the skills they need.
And they can find it in their preferred format (audio, video or written). It just makes learning more personal and enjoyable.
To find out about the benefits (AKA treats) of self-driven learning, check out our blog post 4 Reasons Why You Should Let Employees Drive Their Own Development!
Trick #3: Start using your 1:1 meetings to support learning
Regular manager-employee check-in meetings are well-known for their use in performance management, but did you know these means have huge applications in learning and development as well? As part of discussions about employee feedback or goals, managers and employees can pinpoint skill gaps or obstacles to great performance and identify learning opportunities to help develop their way through them.
The Treat: Personalized learning that aligns to the business
Bringing learning into these 1:1 meetings does two things. First, it helps create learning plans that are personalized to exactly what the employee is trying to accomplish, and second, it allows managers to ensure that learning efforts are aligned to high-level business goals.
Want to learn how it’s done? HR expert and author of the HR Bartender blog Sharlyn Lauby wrote two great posts on bringing learning into 1:1 meetings earlier this year. You can check them out at the links below.