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Article -> Invest in Development of Employees

Date Added: June 2016

A few months ago, this column addressed effectively coaching and mentoring employees. More detailed leadership evolution is to recognize, train and develop others.

Here is a brief sampling of what leaders should seek, and more importantly, what employees should request from their leaders.

·        Recruit and coach people to be in multiple roles rather than one position. This encourages creativity and adaptability, while keeping people engaged.

·        Adapt roles to fit people. Customize positions based on employees’ gifts and strengths.

·        Set clear expectations and hold people accountable. This inspires people to always give their best and understand they are part of special team and organization.

·        Find undiscovered talent. Ask lots of questions to really understand employees’ interests and passions vs. assuming you know them.

·        Be flexible with career paths. Find ways to accelerate growth, learning and responsibilities; rather than relying on rigid policies such as being in roles for a certain number of years.

·        Accept people leaving. High quality people may leave for other organizations. While not ideal, keeping in contact with these individuals and having transparent communication may encourage them to return in the future.

·        Relentlessly invest in coaching and mentoring. Share stories and give employees hands-on experience to succeed or fail. Continuously provide immediate feedback vs. waiting for an annual review or one-on-one meeting.

Years ago, my executive coach told me her brother died unexpectedly in his early 40s. At his funeral, nearly 30 young professionals separately commented how he invested time coaching and mentoring them. That story affected me so much that I committed to doing the same.

There are numerous young professionals in their 20s and early 30s who I always make myself available. This includes those I mentored more than 10 years ago and now work out of state. The best part of many days, weeks or months is my communication with them; and when they contact me because they seek input on an issue after not hearing from them for many months.

Many people speak of a legacy. For me, the only legacy is positively impacting the lives of others and hoping they do the same.

David Yeghiaian is committed to positively impacting the lives of others through faith, inspiration and leadership. Reach him at david@unique-solutionsinc.com.

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