Building a learning culture is not just an HR fad, it is about driving the business forward. To thrive in a changing landscape, organisations must make employee development, growth and mobility a top priority.

A study by Amazon finds that almost three-quarters of Millennial and Gen Z workers are planning to leave their jobs in 2023 due to a lack of skills-building opportunities.

  • workers are concerned about staying competitive 78% fear they lack skills to advance their career
  • 71% are concerned they lack education to advance their career
  • 58% are worried their skills are already outdated
  • 70% feel unprepared for the future of work

These are employees considering quitting their current roles for better opportunities to upskill in a move to a new role.

Focus on the whole workforce

A focus on skills and the skill readiness of employees is increasingly important. Leaders and HR need to deliver tailored development and progression opportunities that will engage and motivate employees.

Developing their skills is about more than getting a salary boost or climbing the career ladder, for greater status and recognition. The hope is that career development will lead to increased sense of purpose, better work-life balance, and will advance their ambitions and create a better work experience.

Our colleague, Anne Fulton the founder and CEO of Fuel50, maintains that employers should prioritise the development for all employees, no matter their position, title, or experience.

Democratise development

The traditional career model makes managers the controllers of employees’ career paths and only some individuals are offered opportunities for growth and development. Such hierarchical systems are out-dated. I have never got that HR/LD knew best when it came to manpower planning. We need to move away from these elitist practices. We need democratised development, ensuring every employee has opportunities to develop and progress their career.

Effective career development initiatives facilitate personal growth, enhanced self-confidence, greater meaning and purpose, enhancing employee engagement, thereby enabling real transformation. Organisations need to build their talent pipeline and leadership and people professionals must ensure that all employees have the training, support and resources to be effective in their roles.

Anne suggests that: “Democratised development is a step forward in creating work environments that support every employee to develop their skills, grow their career, and experiment with new roles and opportunities within an organisation.”

Access for all

We know that the most engaged employees were from organisations that:

  • Prioritise career development – reskilling, upskilling, and initiatives to improve capabilities across the workforce.
  • Offer access to career resources and learning – including incentives for acquiring and developing new skills, can create career journeys, map to future opportunities, and understand skills gaps.
  • Provide access to learning opportunities where employees feel part of an open learning culture surrounded by valuable experiences.

I believe that organisations providing a high level of support for skills development with better learning and development initiatives will be able to stay ahead of the game in the ongoing war for talent.

Investing in employees strengthens the workforce

It’s only right that organisations embrace development when it comes to their people. It’s imperative to create an inclusive and democratic work environment where all employees are equally invested in and have opportunities to thrive and grow. This is the only way to future-proof the skills of the whole workforce and prepare an organisation for the future.

Best-in-class organisations invest more in training and development to achieve powerful bottom-line business gains. Facilitating career development ensures a broad talent base that adds value, while enabling an organisation where people want to work because they have access to opportunities to gain valuable skills and experience to support their future.

Employees want more transparency around career path and career growth plans and 10Eighty can design learning and development experiences, coaching and mentoring programmes, and learning gigs for employees that facilitate career development and growth, which are both visible and trackable over time.

Michael Moran

Michael is CEO and Founder of 10Eighty. He is passionate about helping people maximise their potential and believes everyone should have job satisfaction and a successful career. He helps organisations design jobs and career paths that maximise employee engagement. As an avid reader/commentator on the world of work and sport, he regularly draws parallels between the two. You could describe Michael as a budding author with “The Guide to Everlasting Employability” already under his belt, and technophile who’s created 2 career management apps to help people manage their careers.

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