Do you individualise development plans?
- November 22, 2018
- Posted by: Arron Skillen
- Category: Development Plans
The modern workplace has changed significantly from the way that business operated in the late 90’s. The 90’s workplace was a regimented, 8am-5pm operating machine in which every employee, regardless of their capabilities was expendable. Fast forward to 2018 and the demand for high quality employees is as active as ever and businesses who provide flexible work hours along with outstanding development opportunities not only have desirable businesses, but tend to be the most successful. But providing a desirable environment is more than a funky office or cool work perks – it requires a genuine desire by all stakeholders to improve and develop.
A learning organisation is one that is open to learning at all levels and one at which learning is intrinsically embedded into their strategic and operational planning. Learning organisations are able to adapt to new technologies or changes to market; are able to innovate their offering and are able to empower their employees to grow and succeed. There are plenty of examples of a learning organisation – think W.L Gore; but the method on how to achieve it in the busy business life we all endure is not as clear. It is where I reflect back on my learnings whilst completing my Education degree. One such learning was the concept of individualised learning plans for students.
An individualised learning plan is an agreed operational plan that details where the student is now, where they need to be and a pathway on how to get there. Whilst the concept seems simple and logical, the pathway can be difficult to plan and account for. It requires finding resources, mentors and checkpoints to ensure that it can be monitored and adjusted accordingly. It can be quite time consuming, particularly for 5 classes of high school students with 30 students in each class.
Applying this concept however within the workplace can be a little less time consuming. Whilst at Bell Partners Melbourne, I started with the mid-level staff members because deciding on their career path was relatively straight forward. We looked at the skills they have currently and those that need to develop to reach the next stage of their career. We then looked at both internal and external training opportunities and exposures and agreed on the path. This also required committing to a training budget and a set of KPI’s that holds both the employee and mentor accountable for its success. From here, it is a great stepping stone to start to build the learning culture.
The challenge for the strategic planners in the office is ensure that each individualised development plan is aligned with where the business is growing and in relevant timeframes. There are of course staff members that may grow too quickly or not quickly enough, but an understanding of how these development plans integrate with the overall business plan is key to its success.
Only through cultivating a development and learning culture can a workplace be truly desirable. If you are unsure where to start on this path, Bizee can provide all the solutions to help you through. Contact us today to see how we can assist.