How to Offer Growth Opportunities

Growth is the only guarantee that tomorrow is going to be better.” ~ John Maxwell

A common challenge in working with your team is to ensure that people are committed to their position, the team and ultimately your organization. One of the key ways to do this is to develop your people – don’t let them get bored with the status quo.

When we are growing, we are expanding which builds excitement. Remember the last time you went to a key conference or presentation where you learned a new concept that inspired you to see things differently? There was the value in that right? So when you commit to your team members’ growth and help them build on their skills and interests they are more likely to stay engaged.

How can you develop people?

  1. Encourage them to share their goals. Have a frank discussion about where you see them going – it may be that you see an opportunity that they aren’t aware of it, and would be interested in.
  2. Then ask (both them and yourself) what can we do to support those growth goals?
  3. Look at your resources. What’s the budget you have? What’s the people resources internally that you can call upon?
  4. Set up mentoring opportunities where two team members from different teams can support one another’s growth.
  5. Read a book as a team. Have a monthly book club where you buy lunch, or have a potluck lunch and discuss this month’s book. Topics might be leadership, a new book in your industry, conversation techniques that work, etc.
  6. Seek out on-line training opportunities that lessen the cost of travel.
  7. Hire a great trainer to come in and provide training that a number of your direct reports are interested in.
  8. Of course, if funds are there, have people go to conferences and outside meetings. Think about creative ways for them to share what they learned. Sometimes as a lunch and learn or have them write a short article on what they learned.

Growth is important to our careers and in working with our teams. Encouraging people’s development will ultimately improve your innovation and thinking of new solutions. Not to mention the benefits to your customers of a highly trained, up-to-date team!

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