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Investing in Employees Can Boost a Business

Most managerial teams and executives realize they could ill-afford to lose their key employees and the valuable work they provide on a daily basis. However, by failing to work on employee development and invest in internal talent, a company may find itself scrambling to retain top employees. Those workers who don't feel valued or who aren't advancing with a firm may be tempted to leave and pursue other opportunities, making it critical for companies to recognize - and reward - their most impressive team members. 

The importance of development in the workplace
Investing in current employees has multiple benefits, one of the most obvious being that top workers may be less likely to leave if they are reassured their careers are on track and they are receiving the support they seek. This prevents a business from having to hire consistently, a resource-draining activity that leaves workers, management teams and HR departments exhausted and overwhelmed. 

Development also matters to employee morale - any company leader dealing with a low morale workplace knows just how damaging it can be. Low motivation and a lack of interest in work can result in serious problems, such as wasting company time and resources and executing projects poorly. Uninspired employees can also cause client relationships to deteriorate, as they may let complaints sit unresolved, fail to respond to inquiries and provide low-quality work. 

Keeping employees engaged and interested is critical to company success. Retaining top talent and keeping workers eager to complete projects can make or break a company's reputation and its ability to perform. This makes working on development absolutely key; often, bonuses or compensation raises aren't enough to stop workers who feel as though they aren't getting any support in their growth goals from heading to a competitor or slacking off until they find a new position elsewhere. Those workers who receive the guidance and development they're seeking are more likely to remain loyal to a firm, further enhancing their productivity and morale.

What are the reasons companies fail to implement development programs? 
It's not hard to find ways for managerial teams to avoid development planning; even if higher ups agree an employee has serious potential, their growth may still be put on hold. If a business finds its managers putting off development for the following reasons, it may be time to institute new policies in regard to growth planning:

Lack of time. No time is never a good excuse, especially when it involves assigning tasks to employees eager to advance their careers with a company. Management teams may sometimes put off talking about potential opportunities or new projects a worker can take on, but this is a dangerous habit. Those in charge should always find a few minutes to discuss options and future opportunities for employees eager to advance. 

Prioritizing the current moment. Today's projects are always important, but failing to think about the future and work ahead can get teams into trouble. Managers should always be thinking about the future, even when they're working on time-sensitive projects and are caught up in the moment. 

No real strategy. Some management teams may fail to help employees grow because there's no set company policy in regard to internal development. This can make it confusing and complicated for those in charge to help workers achieve their goals, take on new responsibilities and write up self reviews. 

Creating strong internal growth policies 
It sounds simple to implement new strategies that will focus on helping strong employees grow with a firm, but many companies fail to use the right tactics. It's important to recognize the importance of certain policies that will help retain top performers and ensure they're moving up the company ladder.

Frequent reviews are essential. Assessments are critical to internal employee development - without them, neither employees nor their managers will know exactly where a worker stands and how he or she can improve to achieve a promotion. While it's important for supervisors to write up their own thoughts and determine an employee's performance, it's also helpful for workers to write up a self review. This may give a management team valuable insight and indicate a worker has taken it upon him or herself to take on more projects, assist coworkers or enhance client service. 

Genuine interest in employee goals. While many managers may be concerned about employee growth, those who express this and work with their teams to ensure each member is getting the support they need may have more success boosting employee morale and promoting from within. If workers don't realize their managers are there to help them achieve their career ambitions, they may seek employment at other firms where they feel their chances of growth are stronger. 

Consider using technology to help. Some companies utilize tools such as analytics applications to assist them in the development process. Such aids can help a company determine how an employee's performance stacks up and if the quality of their work is progressing to a level that calls for a promotion, allowing a company to hire from within and not waste resources hiring, training and developing a new employee. 

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