Kaye Aliyah Curtis is a freelance content writer with a strong interest in employee welfare. Views are the author's own.
These days, upskilling employees is more important than ever. In 2021, about 60% of hiring decision-makers said that they planned to reskill their employees by the end of the year, and the majority of large companies said that they would offer reskilling opportunities.
One way decision-makers can upskill their employee base is to invest in employee development programs. Employee development programs are able to train employees in useful skills like communication, leadership and problem-solving, and they help employees combat behaviors that make the workplace unsafe, such as discrimination and sexual harassment.
Here are four of the most important workplace learning and development programs:
Naturally, there's a growing demand for professionals with project management skills. Moving up in an organization often means taking leadership roles, and those who hold those positions need to know how to oversee company projects.
Offer project management training to teach your employees how to look at the big picture, and to analyze a project's costs, risks and scope to optimize time and resources. Through management training, employees can learn modern project management methodologies like Agile, Kanban, Lean and Scrum. These kinds of tools make it possible to focus on essentials and meet goals. Project management training ensures that your employees will have the organizational skills necessary to deliver quickly and efficiently.
Connecting with colleagues is key to thriving in leadership. There's a growing demand for team leaders with exceptional people skills. Companies should teach their employees basic communication skills, which includes verbal communication skills that help with processing and delivering information, active listening and responding, and technical skills such as public speaking and writing. Companies can also facilitate effective group communication by modeling motivation and conflict resolution.
Diversity, Inclusion and Sensitivity
A diverse and inclusive workplace can boost business creativity. Companies that hire people from different walks of life gain unique perspectives that help to improve projects, products and services. However, if a company fails to create an environment that is accepting of individual differences, talented workers may become alienated, and this can create a negative impact on productivity and retention rates. Companies should encourage their employees to accept individuals with different backgrounds and beliefs. Through diversity training, employees can become more aware of pre-existing prejudices and assumptions, thus creating a workspace where diverse individuals can collaborate effectively.
Every worker deserves to feel safe. Unfortunately, despite movements against sexual harassment, such as #MeToo, the problem still exists in the workplace. Among women who have experienced sexual harassment, 69% said those incidents occurred in a workplace setting, according to a Pew Research survey on workplace sexual harassment.
It is imperative for companies to raise awareness of, and help employees identify, sexual harassment; then, take steps that prevent recurrence. This includes enlightening employees on the scope of their employers’ responsibilities concerning allegations, investigations and elimination of workplace sexual harassment.
When companies invest in employee development, everyone wins. Employees gain the skills they need to progress in their careers, while companies get to improve productivity, creativity and collaboration in the workplace.