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Good Leaders Promote Professional Growth

Written by: Santarvis Brown, Senior Level Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.

 
Executive Contributor Santarvis Brown

As a leader who has been on both sides of the desk, I know how important professional training, development, and growth can be. Many employees are constantly looking to refine their skills, but not all leaders are willing to afford them the opportunity to do so. Stagnating employees are rarely happy employees, and while the thought process behind restricting professional growth seems to be that well-trained employees might leave the company, untrained staff likely will, too.

Photo of woman wearing eyeglasses and her team

Good leadership includes helping your employees advance in their careers. Give them all of the training and educational opportunities you can! Then reinforce how much they mean to your company and try to keep them around. Train your employees well enough so that they could leave, in other words, and treat them well enough that they won’t.


Good leaders promote professional growth. Let’s look at how.


Get to know your employees


Before you can determine which opportunities are right for your employees, you should have at least a basic understanding of their strengths and weaknesses and overarching professional goals. If one of your team members is planning on pursuing front-facing actions that rely more on interpersonal communication than anything else, you want to pass along any opportunities that come your way for that kind of growth.

The best leaders know their employees’ professional abilities. It can take some time to interact with them enough to glean their expertise (or lack thereof), of course, but it’s something that you should keep in mind as their time with the company increases.


Be flexible with training opportunities


One of the biggest challenges professional growth opportunities present is their scheduling. Many of them take place during the workday, which means that your team will be down a person for the duration of the training program in question. Before you dismiss the opportunity out of hand based on that, reconsider how it will benefit your employee and advance their goals as well as what the overall team stands to gain from the employee’s advanced knowledge.


Good leaders are willing to be flexible with work schedules wherever possible in order to promote professional growth. Remember that if you won’t make time for their growth, employees will find an employer who will.


Alter job descriptions according to new training and expertise


Sometimes job descriptions remain the same throughout the entirety of an employee's tenure with the company. While that makes sense in some cases, in others it would be more productive to change them a bit as time passes. If your employee has advanced their knowledge in the industry and is now an expert in a certain niche, their daily responsibilities should reflect that change in some way.


Give your employees the opportunity to practice their new skills and continue to gain confidence in their professional growth. Don’t be afraid to sit down with your team members and discuss their current and future roles in the company as their projects and tasks shift.


If you want to be an excellent leader, you must foster professional growth in your employees. Holding them back will accomplish nothing except festering resentment.


Visit Santarvis on his LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook for more information.

Santarvis Brown Brainz Magazine
 

Santarvis Brown, Senior Level Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine

Dr. Santarvis Brown has spent 15+ years serving as a leader, innovator, and changemaker in education, showcasing in-depth insight as an administrator, educator, and program director. A noted speaker, researcher, and full professor, he has lent his speaking talent to many community and educational forums, serving as a keynote speaker. He has also penned several publications tackling issues in civic service, faith, leadership, and education.

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