Developing your number one asset often goes to the bottom of an organisation's to do list. Either financial, operational, or time constraints are reasons why investing in people development goes on the back burner. However, an absence of people development in your organisation will ultimately lead to financial waste and operational inefficiencies. Talent leaves, errors increase, and people contribute less than their full potential. If this resonates with you, maybe it is time to look at people development as a profit centre rather than cost in the business. Investing money on the right people initiatives that support improvement and growth will ultimately deliver better returns in the long run. And the good news? There's a lot you can do at low or no cost to make a difference. 
In the current job market, competitive salaries, flexible working hours, and good benefits packages are a must. After what you earn, the main reason people leave a job is due to a lack of development and role progression. Employees who have the opprotunity to learn and grow are more likely to stay in the business for longer, they report increased job satisfaction, and go the extra mile to deliver value. Continued learning has benefits for the individual, organisation, and customer. So, let’s take a look at the value of investing in your staff. 
Attract Top Talent 
You are far more likely to attract motivated, ambitious employees if you provide opportunities for learning. While high performers are still looking for attractive remuneration packages, they thrive on challenges and are always wanting to learn more. Providing a broad mix of opportunites to grow technical and people skills through different mediums will help prospective employees to know they have a future within your company, with the potential to climb up the ladder. 
Staff Are Satisfied & Engaged 
People who have the opportunity to use their strengths, knowledge, and skills every day at work are more satisfied, engaged, and productive. However, people will quickly become bored or stagnate unless they encounter new challenges or assignments that allow them to improve and grow. Investing in learning does not always need to be about paying for courses and qualifications. Moving employees to new teams or projects, assigning a mentor, or inviting them to make a presentation are all low-cost solutions to stimulate learning. The more opportunites to learn you create, the more efficient ways people will find to do their jobs. This all helps save money and speeds up delivery in the long run.  
Employee Retention Improves 
Once you've hired the best talent, what are you doing to keep it? Just like with customers, it is always easier to keep the ones you have rather than invest in attracting new ones. Replacing a lost employee is time-consuming and costly, especially if you need to bring in a recruitment company to aid your search. Losing great employees can affect the overall atmosphere in the office as people feel they are taking on more than their fair share. Your best talent need to know you believe in their potential and you can show that your support for their continued development by putting them forward for key projects,or giving them a platform in front of key customers and leaders in the organisation. These opportunities shout out that you value your best people and or course give them the experiences they need to keep learning. 
Employee Collaboration 
Ceating a space for learning in your organisation is a fantastic way to build trust and collaboration between teams. Investing in training courses and team building events help to improve communication between employees and build stronger working relationships. Ultimately this is great for your workplace culture and helps reduce friction in personal working relationships. At Newland Partners, we regularly use a range of profiling tools from the globally renowned organisation Insights® to help organisations build inclusive and high performing cultures. However, you can quickly inject some energy into building effective teams by creating ways for the team to come together and share their learning; this might be an online 'coffee and chat' or learning lunch where people talk about the challenges of their work and to share ideas for improved ways of working. You might also conisder asking employees who have been on training courses to present their learning to the wider team so that everyone gets some benefit for their learning experience. 
Keeps Your Business Moving Forward 
Innovation is essential for securing new business, staying ahead of the competition, and improving efficiencies internally. Allowing your employees to attend events where they hear about new ideas will help them to build industry knowledge and discover new techniques that you may not have even considered. Simple and low cost ways to encourage employees to mine for innovative thinking and solutions include attending local networking events or conferences. If you hunt about you will be surprised how many are out there that are free and offer a great way to talk with experts in your industry sector. 
Internal Promotion Opportunities 
By developing your staff this can help to identify those who have the skills and the motivation to succeed within your business. Does one member of your team in particular have the drive to become a team leader or even a senior manager? If employees realise that engaging in training could help them excel within the business, they will be more willing to take part. Diversifying the skills of your employees will give you an array of candidates ready to progress within the business. A common challenge for organisations is that they feel they have limited opportunities for people to be promoted. As a result, there is a tendency to do nothing to grow the people who might fill senior posts until the vacancy arrives. Think ahead and start investing in the development of your future leaders and technical experts early; make sure you are working with them on their personal development plan, find them a mentor, and put them on that managment training course even though they are not in a management role yet. 
Overall, continuing development of your people will pay off in the long run and reduce the effort as well as wastage generated from a high turnover of staff. In today’s world, professional development is now an essential requirement, not just a perk like it used to be. High achievers looking to make a real difference in their communities will always look for roles where they feel supported, and can undergo training to develop their skills.  
Wherever you are in your journey to provide learning and development opportunities for your people we would love to talk with you. Why not contact us for a free consultation and benefit from our expert insights that can help you shape a development polan for the people of your organisation that delivers a real return on your investment. 
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