Template for personal career development plan
As a business leader, one of your primary roles is to help your team members improve and achieve their professional goals. Of course, your motivation isn’t entirely selfless. The more your employees grow and add to/refine their capabilities, the more they will be able and motivated to contribute, and the more successful your company will be.
As a manager, then, it’s your job to determine the best way to motivate and enable your employees’ career development and to monitor their progression. By working closely with them, you can also proactively explore how they can be cohesively aligned to same business goals.
By this point, you might be saying, “I’m not quite sure what each of my employees really want out of their individual careers.” If that’s the case, you’ve just found your next New Year’s resolution. As a manager, you not only need to be aware of your employees’ career aspirations, you need to be actively encouraging and counseling them to develop a strategic plan for making those goals a reality. A large portion of this will fall on the employee to formulate their individual goals and actively execute against them by adding various skill sets, but it is up to you to help them by removing impediments and determine how you can help along the way.
Of course, another concern many managers may have is keeping employees focused on their current roles and the task at hand. How do you keep them engaged in the here and now while also strategically going after goals that will allow them to grow later in their careers? The key is to develop a solid foundation that will allow for short-term and long-term career goals to be shared in an open setting and taken seriously for what they are. This will require you as a manager to be able to relate with your employees on a personal level and build a rapport of sharing goals and thoughts freely within the organization. It goes beyond a simple do’s and don’ts list, which is why you will want to instill a more formalized process to serve as the backbone.
Use This Employee Career Development Plan (Free Template)
My recommendation is to focus on creating a more tangible process by having all of your employees complete an Individual Development plan to keep track of their own goals and their progress towards those goals. The University of California Berkeley has a great model that you can personally tailor to create a similar structure that will be directly aligned with your team and industry.