This edition of Sparked was published and delivered on March 3rd, 2023.

Sparked is Fired Up! Culture’s bi-weekly email newsletter focused on what drives culture and engagement in the workplace. This newsletter is for leaders who are ready to get intentional about bringing their team together, building engagement, and harnessing the power of culture to drive results.

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Engage your Team by Investing in Their Development

McKinsey lists “lack of career development and advancement” as the leading reason why team members leave and turnover in organizations.

We published The 2022 Culture & Workplace Engagement Report last month—our data set, pulled from nearly 1,200 responses to the Fired Up! Culture Index, showed that 22% of survey respondents agreed that they had a written development plan that was up-to-date. 

Just 22%.

It’s clear that team members are hungry for professional development. 

It’s clear that organizations are struggling to deliver on that desire from their team members. 

And while time, money, and resources are strained for many organizations, leaders must consider how they build and maintain investment for the professional development of their team members. 

For your Consideration

Have you considered what opportunities your organization provides team members for professional development? 

What opportunities are built into the culture of your organization to develop people internally? Is there budget available for team members to attend conferences, take classes, or buy books? 

Have you considered how your team members feel about the professional development opportunities available to them?

Professional development should be an ongoing conversation between you and each of your team members. Some of your team will value these opportunities more than others. That’s fine, but it’s good for you to know where the importance of professional development falls for each person on your team. Understanding that need will help you prioritize when time and resources are limited. 

Have you considered if your team members realize the opportunities they have to professionally develop? 

This comes up from time to time in many of the organizations we work with: the opportunities provided for professional development are thorough, but team members in the organization either don’t realize initiatives are built for their development or they always want more opportunity, no matter what. As your organization invests in individual personal development and provides opportunity around it, don’t miss the chance to champion those investments.

Take Action to Spark Engagement

How can you take action to help your team members with their professional development?

  • Have a conversation: ask and seek to understand what professional development opportunities are interesting for each member of your team
  • Dedicate time: for upskilling, cross-training, and mentorship opportunities within your organization
  • Allocate budget: for classes, conferences, and memberships outside of your organization
  • Clarify: career pathing so team members understand what’s needed for advancement 

Further Exploration on Professional Development