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Get the most from your talent development solutions

Updated: Mar 14

June 28, 2022|Leadership

A challenging talent economy. Shifting markets requiring new skills. For many reasons, companies are realizing they need elevated or different skillsets and deciding to invest in their teams. This is wonderful news! As with so many things, step one is admitting there is a problem. But then… how do you solve it?

Like anything else, it's all about smart investing. So how can you invest your development dollars for the highest payoff? Here are 4 do's and don'ts to consider.

Don't waste your dollars

First, let's start with where NOT to invest those dollars. Two costly mistakes we see organizations make are:

  1. Throwing their money at the "wrong" problem. Before you jump to a solution, or bite on something someone is trying to sell you, ask yourself, "Is this really going to get me the results I need?". Your flashy new CRM won't fix a broken sales process, and fancy training won't make up for problems with role clarity or expectations.

  2. Thinking a "one and done" solution will get you uplift. Skill development is only PART of the answer. Individuals also need other factors addressed if you want to see real, sustained improvement.

Do consider the big picture

If performance change was easy, we'd all be hitting results every quarter, right? In reality, there are a lot of factors that can enable or inhibit your performance.

Our organizational capabilities model (shown right) depicts the 18 areas that organizations need to have working to win. Think about the model as a wheel. Each spoke needs to support the center, and if any of them are lacking, it will be a bumpy ride. Considering the whole helps you determine where you might need to adjust to get the results you seek.

But let’s assume for our purposes today, you DO know that you have a knowledge, skills or ability gap (this is what training targets). How do you know what are the right investments to make in that one area?

Do fill the gaps with wise investments

Should you build or should you buy? The best route here depends on what you have the capability and capacity for internally. But realistically, the question isn’t even just about building or buying because it’s not an either-or. It’s a spectrum.

Every spot on that spectrum has pros and cons. Smart investors will leverage different points on that spectrum: building things they have the internal capability and capacity to build and buying things that they do not. Not sure where to start? Address the areas you believe to be your unique competitive advantages internally or with a trusted partner.

Don't limit your potential solutions

You may already have solution in mind when you started reading, and maybe that is the right next step for your team. But also consider:

  1. Traditional training is not the only solution. In fact, depending on what you’re developing there could be many better answers, and certainly more options.

  2. Make sure you're leaving some room for individual needs. Equipping managers to support individual development planning is an investment that will continue to pay off.

Not sure what the best approach or next step is for your team? Give us a shout, we are happy to give you a no-strings opinion or some considerations.

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