Career paths — grow your people or hire from the market?

How to succeed with your recruiting and career strategy

The expectation that a career can happen within one organisation is limited.

Still, most organisations are interested in people staying and working for them as long as possible. Especially when they perform well and become experts in their field, it is not only expensive but also impossible to find someone who can fill a vacancy on short notice.

Photo by Brendan Church on Unsplash

Still, complaints about the organisation’s culture, leadership behaviour or a lack of opportunities became part of the daily business.

Which problems does your organisation have to address? How may you act more sustainably?

Real Learning

Making good learning offers should be the standard in any organisation. However, countless organisations fail to do so. Many of them do not even know what learning offer is. A real-world example from a project: employees complained that there are no learning offers available in the organisation. Management and executives claimed the opposite as every employee was sent on ten training days per year. Looking at the details, it turned out that the employees were right. The training consisted of six days of training on specialised tax topics, two days of training on data protection and GDPR, plus two days of training for an anti-money laundering certification. Sending an employee to a training day or programme does not automatically imply that you made a learning offer. Here, we saw that all training delivered was necessary to be qualified for the company’s service delivery or to fulfil regulatory demands defined by law.

A learning offer begins when people can grow beyond the level of must-haves and law-fulfilling, regulatory and compliance-satisfying necessities. Learning is a crucial part of growing as a human being. This process includes but is not limited to knowledge about your work. It includes the development of your personality and skills, which can be used at work and in other contexts. The results of such learning offers are higher motivation, higher productivity, better skills and a will to stay with your company longer than you may probably imagine.

Real Accountability

One of the main reasons people decide not to have a career in your organisation is the leader’s inability to make decisions. Not allowing people to grow will make talented people look for other opportunities. Your organisation will be staffed with people left behind at your place due to a lack of talent or ambition. Just check some of the following questions and wonder if they sound familiar to you. Do your leaders want to do everything by themselves? If they delegate, do they frequently, way too often, check on your daily process (hint: that’s micromanagement)? Do they not give you chances to lead as you “are not ready yet”? Are their decisions often led by feelings rather than factual evidence? When it comes to critical decisions, do they constantly escalate the decision to someone else on a higher level, which repeats frequently? Are specific problems evident to anyone; however, no one addresses them? If addressed, are not actions taken, and the daily business is forced on you to keep working as if no issues exist? If one or more questions seem relevant to your workplace, you must act immediately.

Right Budgeting

One of the main reasons why people leave you is because of bad budgeting. For no logical reason, hiring budgets are higher than the budget to maintain and keep staff satisfied. It is a behaviour that goes beyond parody when an employee gets his demand for a salary raise denied but immediately you match a counter-offer from another organisation’s salary offer. Do you think that people feel much valued when they see this behaviour? It makes managers and executives look like they are playing a game, and it is not a fun one.

No matter which benefits you offer, excellent pay is part of the job. Nice promises, some apples in the break room, or coupons for a gym do not pay any bills, and it is time that organisations understand this aspect of the business. To ensure that employees stay and cope with the rising costs of living, Microsoft nearly doubled its salary budget (Source). If your salary offer is not up to the market standards, people will leave you rather sooner than later. If you promote internally or hire externally, every step of designing and offering career paths is accompanied by the question about a decent salary. Your offer must be an excellent one, or people will choose to not work for you but for other organisations, including your competition.

More about career paths in this week’s
podcast: click here to listen and learn.

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Niels Brabandt

Niels Brabandt

Niels Brabandt is in business since 1998. Helping managers to become better leaders by mastering the concept of Sustainable Leadership. Based in Spain & London.